I can has inspiration?

I have to pick a topic for my term paper. We’ve been told to do this early, so all the good ones aren’t gone, but my brain still thinks it’s in the grace period between courses where it can shut off and concentrate on naught but NBA playoffs and snickerdoodles. Maybe y’all can help? Here’s the direction the prof gave us:

Any topic in the area of strategic leadership and change is potentially acceptable for the paper. I suggest you pick a topic: (1) of personal interest and whose mastery is likely to make a positive difference to your career; (2) for which academic research material is accessible in reasonable quantity (perhaps through our library); and (3) narrow enough to be do-able within imposed time and space limitations. Acceptable topics include, but are not limited to:

  • alternative cost leadership (or differentiation) approaches and their performance implications in your industry;
  • alternative customer-centric strategies and their implications for your company’s performance;
  • personnel diversity, organisation strategy, and organisation performance;
  • reward systems, behaviours, and organisation performance;
  • dimensions and performance implications of the your company’s organisation culture;
  • why and how your company should become a better learning organisation;
  • alternative large-scale change strategies and their implications for your company.

Any ideas? The only one I’ve had so far involved distilling and bottling my monstrous apathy and releasing it into the water supply of our competitors, but the ROI on that…not good.

[tags]mba, term paper, strategy[/tags]

Day three of the plague

Yea and verily, this cold is kicking my ass. I had to stay home again today; even if I could summon the energy and concentration to do my job today, I’d just make everyone else sick. I can still get some more basic work done here this afternoon, but I need to find a way to get functional by tomorrow. Can’t miss three days in a row.

I’m sure some people would think I’ve gotten sick like this because I’m (largely) off meat, but that’s not it. I still eat seafood occasionally, I still take vitamins, etc. If anything I probably don’t eat enough vegetables (ironic, for a vegetarian…) or fruits. The Toronto Star actually has a story today about how easy it is to be vegetarian in this city.


Speaking of my job, my title includes the word “strategy”, a term used inaccurately and far too often. I take some flak for it — I often get accused of task-oriented people of “not doing anything, just thinking about things” — which doesn’t bother me, but it does start me wondering if what I work on is really strategy.

That depends largely on the role description, I suppose, and I won’t go into that here, but I read an interesting article last week by Penelope Trunk (aka The Brazen Careerist). In it she states that people inclined to think strategically are (Myers-Briggs personality type) typically INTJs.

The best thing you can do for your career is take a personality test to understand your strengths. If you are an INTJ you really are a strategist.  If you are not an INTJ, the fewer letters you have that match that, the further away from strategist you are. So get some self-knowledge before you declare yourself a strategist.

I am, in fact, an INTJ — I was an ISTJ in university when I first took the test but a few years ago came out INTJ — so while this may not mean much in itself, and I would never refer to myself as a “strategist”, it does help to reassure me that I am, in fact, in more or less the right field of work. Which is, you know, nice.


I haven’t used Schmap.com myself, and until Monday I’d never heard of the site, but whoever they are they decided to use one of my Flickr pictures for one of their new Paris guides. It’s a shot taken in Place des Vosges, for their Marais neighbourhood guide.

Of course, I can’t take any credit whatsoever for the shot; Nellie took it, just as she took all of the best shots from our trip to France. The girl has an eye.

[tags]vegatarian, strategy, myers-briggs, intj, schmap, paris, marais, place des vosges[/tags]