When I was younger I can’t say I had a thought out career strategy. I arrived in the U.S. at 17, as an immigrant from Mumbai with a total of two bags. My strategy was to put one foot in front of the other. (more…)
Emergency drills featuring dire scenarios are standard operating procedure for schools, universities and colleges, corporations, and communities. After working through the solutions, we pat ourselves on the back and assume that we’re ready should anything disastrous happen. Then it does, and we find out if we were right. (more…)
When was the last time you drove from point A to point B and had no memory of how you actually arrived at your destination?
We can use our turn signals, occasionally check our mirrors and obey the speed limit—but how often do we go through those steps mindlessly? We do it all the time, don’t we? (more…)
I have a daughter and not once during her young life have I thought she deserves less because of her gender. Not at home, in the classroom or on the playing field. The idea seems ludicrous. (more…)
I graduated from graduate school in 1982. I thought the key to my future was about keeping my head down and working hard.
It was. But, in retrospect, it was about much more, too. (more…)
I consider myself a pretty good mentor. I like to work with people coming up in the field – in my case that would be the culinary arts.
So when the National Restaurant Association Education Foundation asked me to be part of a CEO panel to discuss career trajectories at the recent Armed Forces Culinary Forum, I was excited. (more…)
Sodexo North America
We were about three-fourths of the way up the mountain and my friend’s breath grew rocky in the thinning air. He needed a break. He might need to turn back. The guide told the rest of our group to continue onward and he’d wait with my friend. (more…)
In what feels like a lifetime ago, I was in my first year at Harvard Business School. I learned a tremendous amount that year – including one lesson that was more consequential than I thought possible. (more…)
Most new jobs come with a significant learning curve. There are new colleagues to meet, new systems to learn, new protocols to lead. But sometimes, the biggest learning curves are more personal – figuring out which life experiences can shed light on the challenges ahead. (more…)
In many communities, colleges and universities walk a fine line between “town and gown.” While cities are proud to be home to educational institutions, the difference in demographics between those on and off campus are often considerable. Conflicts can arise based on differences in socioeconomic status, educational opportunity, race and ethnicity, political viewpoints and immigration status, particularly in cities. (more…)
It has been over 30 years ago since I finished college and that education has helped me climb the proverbial career ladder all the way to CEO. But last fall I decided it was time to go back to school. (more…)
The world is increasingly driven by technology. Certainly, university and college campuses are no exception. A whopping one billion more digital-native millennial students will emerge worldwide over the next 20 years, predicts IBIS Capital/Ed Tech Global 2016. (more…)
The first rule of business is to know your customer. For those of us in the higher education community, this would be an easy question, right?
Our “customers” are generally 18-25-year-olds, recent high school graduates who feel fortunate to receive guidance on how to expand their horizons and launch their careers. (more…)
Welcome to November, when college and university students are well into their first semester, deeply engaged in their classes, cheering on their sports teams and enjoying campus life. (more…)
A casual observer might think educational success is an outcome of good teaching and a well-constructed curriculum. Many (including myself) in the education community know that those elements are a crucial parts of a massive landscape.
And, now more than ever, we know that students reach their potential when they are supported academically as well as personally by a community that fosters individual growth, independence and meaningful engagement. (more…)
About 30 years ago I met the person who would inspire me in so many ways, and especially in my understanding of gratitude. He had been graced with a second chance before we met and carried with him a constant appreciation for that and for those who helped him along his sometimes difficult journey. (more…)
Inclusion is an important word in the business community, and one we hear often, particularly in the human resources field. Leaders in every industry are striving to build cultures of inclusion, creating workplaces that value all employees. (more…)
A few years ago, my wife and I sent our oldest abroad to high school. We were all equally nervous. This was a boy for whom we had cared, worried over and fed for 18 years. Yet, suddenly, he was supposed to do it all himself? (more…)
“You don’t have true freedom until you allow a diversity of opinion and a diversity of voices.” Journalist Don Lemon’s outlook is highly relevant as an increasingly eclectic student demographic returns to college and university campuses. Once relatively homogenous, today’s students include a mix of first-generation, foreign and older students who bring distinctive cultural backgrounds, needs and experiences that shape their opinions and contribute to a richer, more vibrant dialogue. (more…)
It’s a message that never gets old; take care of your body and mind and they will take care of you. In the line of business I’m in –improving the Quality of Life for those my team serves – it’s a professional hazard not to care for myself. My brain rationally understands this fact, yet my body gets caught in the everyday currents of travel, team meetings, tackling operational challenges with my Onshore Energy client partners. (more…)
This is my daughter and brand new grandson. What beautiful creatures. I want them to have joy and love and fulfillment in their lives. And, now that I am old enough to be a grandmother twice over, I especially want them to have health. I know how important – and fleeting – health can be. (more…)
This week I had the privilege of speaking to graduates of Florida State University. (No, not as a sports commentator, but I had a great time acting like one.) As a commencement speaker. I’m an odd choice for a commencement speaker for many reasons, including that I don’t like to sit through commencement speeches. (more…)
A few years ago, I overheard my daughter talking to a friend about work-life balance. She marveled that even as her mother worked a corporate job, she had been to every one of her volleyball games. (more…)
The ability to accept change and its concomitant challenges and opportunities is an uncommon strength. University administrators develop complex strategic plans to grapple with economic, technological and demographic challenges and increasing competition as their students struggle with a multitude of changes and challenges. (more…)
My belief is that leadership is all about giving back. By giving, I am granted the gifts of life that nothing else ever could. In the last 10 years of my career, I have mentored over 30 people and currently mentor three colleagues. (more…)
This week, I used an iPhone app to summon a car. The driver arrived a few minutes later and greeted me by name. He delivered a friendly, comfortable ride to my destination. (more…)
Almost exactly five years ago I learned a leadership lesson I never wanted to learn. But as I look back on this anniversary and one that makes Valentine’s Day bittersweet, I appreciate that I grew personally and professionally in a way I might never have otherwise. (more…)
This past year, I did the unthinkable and followed through on a resolution. And, by following through, my CrossFit journey didn’t just help me find my abs; it also gave me a crash course in business endurance and career success.
The start was all mental obstacles. My career had forced me to ruthlessly prioritize my time. I fit in exercise, but it was more of a squeeze-in than a priority. (more…)
I just turned 60. It’s an interesting age. (more…)
This week on the news, I saw Congress grill social media executives. I heard about the spread of fake news and the negative things that social media has wrought. There was lots of focus on young people and how they use these forums – I even heard one report when an expert being interviewed mentioned that he was an undergraduate. (more…)
Sodexo North America
Some of the buzz these days surrounds women in the workplace and the various barriers to their professional advancement. My personal experience over the years, probably like many others, has varied between amazing bosses and mentors who encouraged me to grow, and of course the not so great bosses and the leaders who felt threatened and excluded me. Over the past 9 years, my journey has been more about the evil two words we call “mommy guilt.” It’s the other hidden barrier that so many of us share which often holds women back from the next big promotion. (more…)
Imagine a room with 4,000 people from every state and 40 other nations. It’s a giant room which intersects many ages, genders, races, abilities and ethnicities along with a diverse range of talents, experience and professions. In fact, they come from more than 250 employers including my own, Sodexo. You might wonder what makes this global business conference unique? (more…)
Every day, I see incidents and injuries around me waiting to happen. Maybe I’m clairvoyant. Or perhaps I have a heightened sense of awareness because I lead the North American Safety team for a global organization. (more…)