Switched On

Emma De Vita reviews the new book by Sahar Hashemi, the entrepreneur who co-founded Coffee Republic

Sahar Hashemi, the successful entrepreneur who co-founded Coffee Republic, has written a book that describes the eight habits of being effective in your job.

She begins by quoting the world's most famous private investor, Warren Buffett: "I tap dance to work," he says. She then asks: "Do you?" Well, do you? And if not, would you like to?

To feel fulfilled in your job, you need to cultivate a "switched-on" mindset, the book says. You can generate this by developing eight everyday work habits. These range from "being clueless" and "prototyping" to "taking 100 per cent of yourself to work".

Perhaps the most pertinent habit for the third sector manager is "being clueless". Not that charity managers are clueless, of course. What it actually means is getting out of the rut - getting away from the daily grind, turning off the autopilot and rejecting the "how we've always done it" mentality. It means ignoring the way things are usually done and thinking afresh instead.

Ditch the boring routines: vary your journey to work; move your desks around. And how about injecting some fresh blood into your team? Even work experience volunteers can provide an invaluable new perspective. It's time to get clueless.

- Emma De Vita is books editor of Management Today.

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