Archive for April, 2012

Book Review: Presentation Zen

Monday, April 30th, 2012

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Reynolds, Garr. Presentation Zen : simple ideas on presentation design and delivery. New Riders Pub., 2012.

At a conference earlier this month, I gave my first presentation in the Pecha Kucha method.  Pecha Kucha means “chatter” in Japanese and under this method, the presenter uses 20 slides, each shown for 20 seconds each.  The slides advance automatically and when the last one ends, the presentation is finished.

Pecha Kucha is only a sidebar in the book Presentation Zen by communications expert Garr Reynolds, who advocates the use of Zen principles of restraint, simplicity and naturalness when making and delivering presentations.  Author Reynolds encourages people to rethink their approach from the beginning, using creativity, clarity and time away from the computer when deciding on the main points to make.  He encourages the use of stories to emotionally connect with the audience.   And he recommends returning often to the core message.

In design, Reynolds advises his readers to create simple Powerpoint or Keynote slides with few words and no bullet points.  As the presenter speaks, the slides serve a supporting role with a balance of images and data that amplify the verbal message and improve the recall of key information by the audience.  Reynolds includes a host of examples of presentation slides, both good and bad.  The book ends with a section on delivery, connecting with the audience.

Recommended for all presenters who want to engage the audience in a meaningful way.  I will definitely incorporate Zen in my next PowerPoint.

© Reviewer: Meg Trauner & Ford Library – Fuqua School of Business.
All rights reserved.

Book Reviews: In the Eye of The Beholder?

Monday, April 23rd, 2012

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Hamermesh, Daniel S. Beauty pays : why attractive people are more successful. Princeton University Press, 2011.

Mears, Ashley. Pricing beauty : the making of a fashion model. University of California Press, 2011.

On summer breaks while in college, I worked in the Computer Operations Department at Indiana National Bank.  The head of the department was a smart and personable man, who was respected by all who knew him.  His secretary told me that he could never be promoted at the bank because he was unattractive.

That was the early 70’s, and much has changed since that time.  But even today, attractive people are more successful.  Economist Daniel Hamermesh shows in Beauty Pays that attractive people are more likely to be employed, to receive higher salaries and to negotiate loans with better terms. Using an economic approach, he proves that being in the top third in looks in America generates a 5% premium in earnings.  And surprisingly, cosmetic procedures to improve attractiveness make little difference in perceived beauty.

Author Hamermesh argues that employers are rational to favor attractive employees because looks are part of the goods and services sold to customers, who unconsciously discriminate against bad-looking people and do not want to pay as much for associated products and services.   Perhaps even more unfairly, beautiful people are also happier than less attractive individuals.   In the end Hamermesh concludes that while differences in beauty have large impacts, bad looks can be partially overcome through actions, for example by avoiding careers that are influenced by attractiveness, such as acting and modeling.

The modeling business is the topic of Pricing Beauty by Ashley Mears, former model and current faculty member at Boston University.  She demonstrates that models’ looks are a cultural product like art, with a value that is fluid and unpredictable.   She explains why some cultural objects succeed while thousands of competitors fail. In modeling, bookers, clients and models themselves cannot articulate what is the “special quality” that they are seeking in a supermodel.  Author Mears shows that in the fashion market, the players watch each other and the special quality is formed among the ongoing negotiations.  Value is formed through the relationships among the producers.

Both of these books are academic works yet quite readable.  Recommended.

© Reviewer: Meg Trauner & Ford Library – Fuqua School of Business.
All rights reserved.

Need to de-stress during exams?

Friday, April 20th, 2012

Dear Fuqua Students,

Final exams are coming up and many of you likely find this to be an exciting yet stressful time of year. Let the Ford Library help you to relax and unwind during finals this Spring!

Monday, April 30th and Wednesday, May 2nd please visit the Ford Library before or after your exams to visit with our two library dogs, Mr. Anders and Jonas.

Mr. Anders, a hypoallergenic Miniature Poodle, is a calm and affectionate trained agility dog.

Jonas, a Golden Retriever, is an easy going and all-around friendly dog.

They will be waiting for you outside the entrance of the library on the second floor of Breeden Hall.

Good luck on your exams!

The Ford Library Staff

Book Review: The 2-Hour Job Search

Monday, April 16th, 2012

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Dalton, Steve. The 2-hour job search : using technology to get the right job faster. Ten Speed Press, 2012.

The last time I applied for a job was in 1982 when the sought after technology for creating a resume was the IBM Selectric typewriter with an auto-correct feature.  Typists could get away with a typo or two, since the Selectric could lift the ink off the page.  While creating the perfect resume and cover letter was tedious in those days, the job search was a simple 3 step process of finding a job opening, mailing a resume with cover letter and waiting to be contacted for an interview.

Today all is changed and technology makes creating the resume and cover letter easy.  However, the job search process is far more difficult, thanks to that same technology, according to Fuqua’s own Steve Dalton in his new book, The 2-Hour Job Search.  Using the internet, it is simple to find job postings and to submit resumes, but each applicant finds herself competing with thousands of others.  Author Dalton explains that hiring managers are swamped with resumes and avoid reading them, relying instead on internal referrals.  The challenge of the modern job search is efficiently obtaining internal referrals, or finding people to advocate on one’s behalf.

Dalton describes a new way of conducting the job search that is highly efficient and effective, using technology to identify the most appropriate hiring companies for any given person and to build relationships with people inside those companies.  His method involves three steps that he calls Prioritize, Contact and Recruit.  He describes how to create a long list of preliminary companies, collecting information on each one and focusing on the strongest.  Then he shows how to form contacts at the A-list companies, using alumni databases, LinkedIn and Facebook, and to request  informational interviews.

This practical book provides the job searcher with precise instructions and helpful examples on how to execute an effective job search in two hours.   Author Steve Dalton draws on his extensive experience as a senior career consultant and associate director at the Duke’s Fuqua School of Business, where he is also an alumnus.  Recommended to anyone conducting the independent job search.

© Reviewer: Meg Trauner & Ford Library – Fuqua School of Business.
All rights reserved.

New Movies For April

Thursday, April 12th, 2012

Our latest titles are:

The Adventures of TinTin
Alvin & the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked
Bag It
Dangerous Method
The Descendants
Enter Nowhere
Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close


The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
The Muppets
The Rebound
The Sitter
Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy
War Horse
We Bought a Zoo
Young Adult


Tuesday, April 10th, 2012

With only a few weeks before graduation, many of our students have accepted positions and look forward to a new employer.  However,  for those  still looking for that elusive company that fits their needs, I recommend Onesource.

A jack-of-all-trades database, Onesource allows students to build a list of companies meeting their needs for where they want to work, which industry, how large or small, and/or whether the headquarters are in the US with subsidiaries in Tahiti.  From that list, they can download the list and include data such as location, size, and officers names’ and titles.

Though Onesource can’t tell you if there’s a job opening within a company, it can help you pinpoint your search to a select list.  Need more information?  Feel free to ask us now.

Book Review: I’d Rather Be In Charge

Monday, April 9th, 2012

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Beers, Charlotte. I’d rather be in charge : a legendary business leader’s roadmap for achieving pride, power and joy at work. Vanguard Press, 2012.

Charlotte Beers, former CEO of Ogilvy & Mather and Undersecretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs from 2001 to 2003, talks about women, leadership, and advertising on Tuesday, April 10, at the Perkins Library’s Gothic Reading Room, open reception at 5 PM, followed by presentation at 6 PM.

In I’d Rather Be in Charge, Charlotte Beers chronicles her successes and missteps in her trailblazing career in the advertising industry, as she advises women who face their own workplace challenges in achieving positions of leadership.

Beers explains that women and men have different leadership styles and while women work hard, they are rarely included in the tight circle of decision makers at the very top of their organizations, a world still dominated by men.   Women need to change the way they see themselves and the way they communicate to highlight their own potential.  Women also need to choose to be bolder and braver to make their leadership skills obvious to decision makers.

Believing that self-knowledge is critical for true leadership, Beers advises women to keep a journal and to consider how family history influences behavior.  She also describes ways to identify one’s own inner drives.  Beers explains that self-assessment enhances emotional intelligence and magnifies work performance.

The latter part of the book is about navigating the world of work, including topics such as, developing and maintaining work relationships, making presentations, and assuming the lead.  Written in a conversational tone, this book is engaging and thought provoking to the end.

© Reviewer: Meg Trauner & Ford Library – Fuqua School of Business.
All rights reserved.

Book Review: Virtually You

Monday, April 2nd, 2012

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Aboujaoude, Elias. Virtually you : the dangerous powers of the e-personality. W.W. Norton, 2011.

For a generation, educators and physicians, alarmed at the number of hours Americans spent in front of the television, cautioned viewers to cut back.  As technology advanced, television programs appeared on DVR’s, computers, smart phones and  iPads, and people watched more television than ever. New uses were discovered for these devices including email, shopping, games, dating, gambling and pornography.  Now additional concerns  are being voiced about how people and society are changing as the public spends more time than ever on these devices.

A psychiatrist at Stanford, Dr. Elias Aboujaoude writes about his patients in Virtually You, people whose normal use of these devices has interfered with their home lives, romantic relationships, careers and roles as parents.   The ways people act, speak and negotiate online is different from the ways they handle issues offline.  Online, people are bolder, braver  and more terse.    They see themselves as more intelligent and charismatic, superior to others.  They act on impulse.  Over time these new ways of behaving become incorporated into the life of the offline person.

Dr. Aboujaoude describes the e-personality as “more assertive, less restrained, a little bit on the dark side and decidedly sexier.”    Using personal experience and those of his patients, Dr. Aboujaoude discusses how the anonymity of the internet allows ordinary people to behave viciously and tempts good students to cheat.  People who would never been seen in an x-rated store become addicted to pornography.  The vast number of news sources allows people to avoid contrary views and to see themselves as experts.    People neglect their families while they maintain relationships with friends on Facebook or on dating sites.

In 2010, I reviewed The Shallows by Nicholas Carr, an excellent book about the effect of cloud technology on attention.  Dr. Aboujaoude’s new book is about the effect of this technology on our souls.  Recommended.

© Reviewer: Meg Trauner & Ford Library – Fuqua School of Business.
All rights reserved.