Books, Work

What I’m Reading This Month: Work Smarter

I’ve been having to return to my day job because, you know, reality, so I have been reading books about work philosophy to get me back into the swing of things. I’m lucky enough to work at a company that allows us to do the majority of our work remotely on our own schedule, so work-life balance, or occasionally the lack thereof, is mostly up to me.

Remote: Office Not Required by Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson – As I work primarily remotely, this book made my list this month. Remote provides a great overview of the state of remote working and remote work best practices. I’ve been working remotely for almost 6 years now, so the information in this book was nothing new to me. However, it would be great for someone just entering the remote workforce.

How Google Works by Eric Schmidt and Jonathan Rosenberg – This is a business and management book for those who want to foster a culture of innovation in their work environment. It shows how Google functions from the inside, while also providing guidance for how to model good behavior as an employee. Many companies have adopted similar cultures, so much of it may sound familiar if you’ve read about Zappos or Amazon (in theory, maybe not in practice).

Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead by Sheryl Sandberg – While I’m a little late to the Lean In party, I liked reading it now after the hype has died down and people have had time to also be critical of the concepts that Sheryl Sandberg put forth. Reading a book like this several years later gives you the perspective of hindsight so that you can see which principles have actually endured and which have not. Another example of this is #GIRLBOSS by Sophia Amoruso given that Nasty Gal is not the successful company it once was.

Bringing up Bebe? No thanks. I’d rather raise a billionaire – A counterpoint to the French parenting books I have been reading. A rather simplistically presented idea, but worth considering. When I think about parenting philosophy, I like to take pieces from different places that I think work best for us, so I’m always interested in the pros and cons of each.

It’s time to acknowledge that parenting is real work – We all know this, but it’s reassuring to hear it from someone as well-respected as Melinda Gates. When you start to think that you can’t do it all, there is a reason. Parenting is a lot of work. It is a full time job, and once you start to add in other commitments, such as blogging, working or both, you are bound to feel overextended. What this means for parents in the workforce in particular is still up for debate, but the acknowledgement is worth its own consideration.

Writers with Toddlers: Creating Amid Chaos – Great article that compiles strategies from several authors with toddlers on how they create their own balance while taking care of their little ones. It’s motivating to see how others can be productive in similar circumstances and reassuring that it’s not just you who struggles with concentration and other sundry issues of motherhood while attempting to create and be creative.

This post contains affiliate links, but all opinions are my own.

Rhyming with Wine
Diary of An Imperfect Mum

Diary of an imperfect mum

14 thoughts on “What I’m Reading This Month: Work Smarter

  1. Oh I love some new recommended reading material that stretches my mind a little! Love the sounds of the Sheryl Sandberg book – I have to admit that I’m totally unaware of this one – how did I miss out on that hype?! Oh the writing with toddlers – I have total admiration for those women – I have teens and struggle enough – let alone toddlers! #DreamTeam
    justsayingmum recently posted…How Well Do Your Children Know You?My Profile

    1. Both great reads for women with small children looking for balance. After the hype for Lean In, the criticism was that she was too wealthy to have it absolutely right for everyone, especially for single moms, but there’s still a lot to take away from it. After her husband died, she publicly admitted that it was harder than she thought. Thanks for commenting!

  2. Sounds like some interesting reads, I rarely read business books but I’m interesting in learning how to work remotely so I may add Remote to my to read list. Nice to have found your blog.

  3. I’m lucky in that I only work 2 days a week, and away from the home which I think helps the transition between “Mum” and “Employee”. My train to work is a bit like Clark Kent’s phone box where I shed one identity and pick up another. All of these sound like excellent reading, especially for anyone working from home. The last one in particular is jumping out at me as trying to do parenting and blogging always feels like a plate spinning act to me. Thanks for sharing with #DreamTeam x

    1. Ha, yeah, I could go into the office more. I definitely see the advantages to separating your roles. When I’m working at home and his dad is watching him, I still feel obligated to help out. The blogging has been oddly more motivating for me to leave the house. Taking my laptop to a bar and having a glass of wine is my favorite. 🙂 Thanks for commenting!

  4. Ohh I’ve not heard of the first two and they sound right up my alley! I’ll add them to my list. Seriously, this list is getting so long. I need to actually READ some of the books!! I also love that you noted the criticisms of Sandberg’s book. Clearly I love the concept (I named by blog after her book!) but I also don’t agree with everything she says. #DreamTeam
    Lucy recently posted…Start with WHYMy Profile

  5. Ohh some really interesting reads. I do not work but the reads sound great. Love to read new and interesting reads #EatSleepBlogRT

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