Sharpen Your Heels: Mrs. Moneypenny's Career Advice for Women Hardcover – 2 Feb 2012
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Straightforward, to the point, idealistic and pragmatic: wonderful woman.
Christina Falcone, World Economic Forum
This wisdom-filled guide obliterates the myth that women can have it all, and in the process does an invaluable service of redefining success and happiness for everyone.
"Straightforward, to the point, idealistic and pragmatic: wonderful woman."
--Christina Falcone, World Economic Forum
"This wisdom-filled guide obliterates the myth that women can 'have it all, ' and in the process does an invaluable service of redefining success and happiness for everyone."
About the Author
Mrs. Moneypenny has been entertaining readers of the Financial Times for twelve years with her views on everything from Wellington boots to waxing.
Heather McGregor is a leading UK headhunter who owns and runs an executive search firm. Strangely, no one has ever seen Mrs. Moneypenny and Dr. McGregor in the same place at the same time.--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top customer reviews
This is an excellent and inspiring read. Mrs M points out that many women lack a strategy for career success and gives guidance and on how to develop one. The book is full of practical tips and real-life examples from many fields (eg makeup artistry), not just corporate life. She points out some of the differences between men and women (men want to be admired, women want to be liked etc) and gives concrete advice on how to combat these. It's great to hear all this from someone with her level of experience and success. All women can learn from this, though it is perhaps fair to say that it assumes the reader will have a degree of intelligence, ability and application.
I feel slightly ashamed to admit I'm not a regular reader of the FT or the Economist - I just can't seem to tear myself away from the Guardian. Neither do I work in the City or possess a degree in accounting (Mrs Moneypenny is currently studying for one and somewhat regrets she didn't do this earlier in life but personally, I couldn't imagine a duller way to spend my time). I haven't attended the World Economic Forum (as yet) or ever been invited to a shooting party at a country house, both of which Mrs Moneypenny recommends as a fine means to improve one's network of contacts and oil the wheels of business. Nonetheless, I rather enjoyed reading about this high-flying, megabucks world, which is testament to Mrs Moneypenny's humorous style, so finely honed over a number of years in her FT column of the same name.
Although Mrs Moneypenny clearly intends, at one level, for her advice for to be taken literally - attend the poshest university you possibly can, study finance, network with the right people, hire a great nanny, sit on the board of a charity and so on - it was the principle of the thing that I really took away: plan ahead, work hard, seek out opportunities, grow some cojones, help others and (some of them) may later help you. In this respect the book has something for you whether you are a primary school teacher aspiring to become a deputy head, a newly-qualified nurse-practitioner looking for your first higher-level prescribing position, an optician studying sports science at night in the hope of becoming a personal trainer, or a mum of toddlers working very part-time whilst looking to the future. Did you guess it? Yes, these ladies are all real people, my chums, and I shall be recommending this book to all of them.
And if your goal is to become a fully paid-up member of the Establishment or to advise an ambitious, clever but not-very-socially-well-connected girl on how to become one (and by this I mean that daddy can't fix her up the right internships), then this book is also for you. Although I think they probably broke the mould after they made Mrs Moneypenny, her advice on how to reach the dizzy heights of blue-chip CEO is solid gold, as well it should be given that, in real life, she runs a headhunting firm.
Do I plan to take up shooting as a result of reading this book? Probably not. But I'm having a very hard think about what the equivalent activity is for my own industry.
1) Network as much as you can
2) Study at Oxford or Cambridge
3) Do a finance qualification like ACCA or CFA
4) Take up a prestigious hobby such as shooting game, flying airplanes or alternatively sit on the board of a well known charity
5) Find a stay at home husband and an unattractive nanny/au pair who'll look after the children.
Although her experience clearly is most relevant to those with some social and monetary capital, I'd still recommend it to everyone else as an amusing read that provides some useful insight for any woman looking to forge an identity outside the home.
It feels hugely relevant for me early-ish in my career, but see that it would be equally useful for both more experienced and also pre-career ambitious women. Have already recommended to lots of girlfriends and still have a few chapters to go.
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