On Cooking and Studying – Day minus 21

Sunday 18:02, 35,000 ft over the Atlantic Ocean on route to Denver, Colorado, USA

I recently read in The MBA Handbook by Sheila Cameron that reflective writing can prove to be an effective way of collecting thoughts and digesting these into manageable chunks of information, allowing these chunks to be absorbed as knowledge, inspiration and ideas. While I’m not buying everything I’m reading in this handbook, I’ve decided to give this a go.

I love writing; it has this therapeutic effect on me that cannot compete with the best shrink in New York or household chores such as doing the washing up, hoovering or ironing.

I decided to call this blog The Executive Kitchen as I thought it was an adequate description of what I’d like to write about.

This blog will primarily be about my experiences, thoughts and ideas of doing an MBA whilst working full time. Yes, I know – how on earth will I have time to write! Well, truth be told, I don’t know, but I’m quite happy in this unknowing state. I won’t make promises I can’t keep; but I’ll do my best. After all, the whole point of The Executive Kitchen is for it to be a tool that will help me become a better professional.

Why ‘kitchen’, you may ask yourself?

Well, I can’t say I’m a very good chef. My definition of a very good chef is somebody who can effortlessly whisk a collection of ingredients together into a well balanced and delicious meal. Now, to be fair to myself, I can certainly provide this (and a few glasses of wine) at a dinner party, but it certainly isn’t effortless. On the contrary, it takes a hell of a lot of effort. I have to think about exactly what I want to cook, I need to choose what and where to buy the ingredients and then usually I need to follow a recipe from the few cookbooks I owe. The end result is generally pretty good, if I can say so myself.

The analogy of the kitchen and cooking serves me well in my own pursuit of learning the theory and implementing best practice of business administration. Just like a well balanced and delicious meal is the end result of having worked out what to cook, which ingredients to buy and where, and following the instructions of a recipe, a successful marketing strategy, for example, is the end result of similar thought patterns, but dishes, ingredients, cooking and serving are replaced by tactics, objectives, implementation and conversion rates.

And just like a kitchen, I’m sure this blog will be messy, but I hope anyway, that it’s a way to share thoughts and experiences – even if it’s just to a few of you or even just myself.


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