Comparing Yourself To Others

fatmanurerdogan.com | When we read inspirational stories of people who quit their stressful jobs to start their own businesses, it moves us. We say to ourselves, wow, if they can make it happen, so can I. The other day, I read three stories about women who left their jobs in the finance world to start their own businesses. One woman was a stockbroker, and after a major health crisis brought on by work-related stress, she left her job to start an organic farm and sell vegetables at farmers’ markets. The second woman quit her banking career to open a restaurant. […]

The Limits of Career Coaching

It’s a hot new trend. Five years ago, you almost never heard about it. Now it’s everywhere you look. It’s called “coaching” and it takes various forms. Sometimes it’s life coaching, sometimes it’s career coaching, but whatever it is, people are leaving their jobs left and right, hanging out their own shingles as coaches. Some of them have undergone a “spiritual conversion” and they want to help others make that conversion, too. Others just got frustrated in their careers, and are hoping they can teach others to do what they couldn’t. Regardless of how a particular coach arrived in the […]

Business Is Social, Too

By Fatmanur Erdogan, Hurriyet Daily News Twenty years ago, very few people knew what an email was, and even fewer had actually sent one. Instead, we were passing memos around the office, sending faxes, and calling in the bicycle messengers. A lot has changed since then. The idea of distributing a printed memo around the office seems quaint. People get puzzled if you ask them to send a fax. You can spend an entire day in New York City without seeing one bicycle messenger. Email seems to have taken over the world. Actually though, many baby boomers and Gen X’ers don’t realize it, but an entire […]

Logical Incrementalism

By Fatmanur Erdogan, Hurriyet Daily News  Entrepreneurship isn’t just for the young. You can start a business at any age. Yet many older adults struggle to overcome a major obstacle – which is that they know too much. When “knowing too much” means accurately understanding the nuances of a market, it’s a good thing. But when “knowing too much” means knowing too much of the wrong thing, or accepting a conventional wisdom that’s sometimes wrong, it gets in the way. Take the conventional wisdom that in order to be successful, a business needs to execute a well-planned, long-term strategy. After a few years having that […]

Change Isn’t Easy For Anyone

By Fatmanur Erdogan, Hurriyet Daily News In life generally and in business in particular, we like to think of ourselves as being receptive to change.  We like to imagine we are open-minded and adaptable.  Being comfortable with change is considered a great asset in any profession.  When someone calls you a “change agent”, it’s a compliment, and you walk around the office taller, prouder, and more confident.  In fact, 20 years ago, being open to change was considered a plus, something that set you apart.  Now, it’s assumed.  It’s almost become a prerequisite for getting hired for any job in […]

Coming Home Is Harder Than Leaving

By Fatmanur Erdogan, Hurriyet Daily News If you are an expat, you may find that moving back to your home country is actually more disorienting than going abroad was in the first place. You won’t be the same person you were when you left. You’ve been exposed to another culture and learned how to thrive in a completely different environment. Whether you come away from the experience with good, bad, or, more likely, mixed feelings, you’ve grown personally. Your perspective on the world is broader than it used to be. When you get back home, you’ll be bursting with stories to tell. You’ll feel a […]

Someone else’s Dreams For You

By Fatmanur Erdogan, Hurriyet Daily News “Women who are exposed to repeated images of other women who are unusually attractive – for instance, when they read a lot of women’s magazines – feel less attractive themselves, and their self esteem is diminished. The same thing happens to men when they read descriptions of other men who are more dominant or successful,” writes Richard O’Connor, Ph.D., a practicing psychotherapist and the author of the book “Happy at Last.” Advertising has learned how to leverage this phenomenon for sales growth. A typical ad shows an attractive woman dressed in highly fashionable clothes, standing […]

Thinking Like A Grown Up

By Fatmanur Erdogan, Hurriyet Daily News When we’re young, we go to school to learn the basics: reading, writing, arithmetic. You can see some kids starting to question everything at that age, but most of their time is spent learning facts that everyone around the world accepts, things like the basic multiplication tables, or the definitions of words, or the major dates of World War II. As we get further along in our education, we spend more time learning how to question. Science class becomes less focused on teaching us facts, and more focused on teaching us how to test […]

Our pasts are prelude

By Fatmanur Erdogan, Hurriyet Daily News In the old days, people had simpler expectations of life. Our parents taught us to be grateful for the food sitting before us on the dinner table. They taught us to be grateful when the whole family was there to break bread together. Saying grace before a meal took only a few moments, but it reminded us that we could find happiness in the simpler aspects of life, and that message was hammered home with daily repetition. Somewhere along the way, we let the world become more complicated. We decided it wasn’t enough to eat regular meals and […]

The Science Of Self Help

By Fatmanur Erdogan, Hurriyet Daily News Whenever I go to the bookstore, I marvel at how the self-help section keeps getting bigger and bigger. It seems there is a book for almost every kind of problem. Maybe your struggle is with romantic relationships, maybe it’s with weight-loss, maybe it’s with work. Whatever aspect of life has you down, chances are there is a book that will help you, or at least promise to. And these days, self-help isn’t just limited to books. You can go to a seminar, or find help online. Whatever the medium, all the gurus claim something new and magical. Just do what […]