It’s November… You Know What That Means!

Every year, it comes.  No Shave November.  Folks either love it or hate it.  I am on the fence.  Whereas I love not having to worry about whether or not to shave for work in the morning, I know that, depending on who I am meeting with, a trim might not be the worst thing in the world.  And it’s raising awareness for a worthy cause so, hey, why not?  But I’m also not crazy.  I know that I cannot come home and say “Babe, I got fired because I didn’t want to shave.”  So how can you look professional when you’re not shaving?  I’m glad you asked.

1 – Know your facial hair style.  No Shave November (also known as Movember) allows for you to just sport a mustache and that, for some guys, is an acceptable alternative to not shaving.  If your facial hair comes in patchy and all you can solidly grow is a mustache, go for it.  Enjoy the mustache.  But having spotty hair while meeting with a potential investor is not the smartest thing in the world.

2 – Know your office culture.  If it is a conservative one and is unwavering in that conservatism, guess what?  You can’t eat the awareness you raise.  So find another way to give back to the cause and let it go.

3 – Trim your facial hair when needed.  I am all for supporting the cause.  But do it with some commons sense.  I am the first one to line up my beard and mustache so that it’s not unruly.

4 – Make sure the rest of your appearance is a perfect 10! In my industry (and many professional industries), there is a standard and, though many companies/organizations are becoming more liberal about appearance, looking well put together is still a requirement.  So make sure that everything else is as close to perfect as can be.

So, let’s go ahead and commit to raising awareness for men’s health to the best of our abilities.  And, if you want to donate, visit the Movember website.

Make professional development a priority.

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What Are You Reading? Pt. 2

A couple weeks back, I wrote an article titled “What Are You Reading?”  If you didn’t catch it, now would be the perfect time to click the link (It’s ok.  Click it now and then click the back button to come back to this one).

So, you’ve got a few good book suggestions but allow me to be the first to tell you that, if all you’re reading are books about your field, you need to get a life.  Do you ever talk to people outside of your own field?  Thought so.  And do you want to be known as the person who only has a one track mind?  Didn’t think so.  It is much better to be known as the guy who can suggest a great whiskey at an office social or the lady who knows what color is going to be in this spring when fashion is being discussed at dinner.  And how do you find these things out?  Well, because most of us aren’t born with a taste for whiskey or a sense of Spring 2015 fashion, newspapers and magazines are great sources of general knowledge.

 

So what periodicals do I read regularly and recommend?

News: Time Magazine has been around for the better part of a century and it doesn’t look like it’s going anywhere soon.  Even though print journalism has faded to the background, Time has evolved and, today, is still a leader in weekly news.  And you cannot mention news without reading the New York Times.  Anytime I get an opportunity to, I read at least the front page and check out a couple articles they tweet.

Business: Forbes will always put out the most relevant business news.  Anyone who is serious about growing as a professional needs to use Forbes to strengthen his/her business acumen.  In addition, the Wall Street Journal is a must follow on Twitter (Yes, Twitter is still very relevant if you plan to keep up w/ great online reading).  If the economy affects you at all, you need to be keeping an eye on the WSJ.  And if not, please let me know what you’re doing because we need to hang out more.

Men’s Issues: Valet Magazine is an online magazine.  I honestly do not remember how I came across it but it reminds me of a newer, fresher GQ or Men’s Health, both which I still read as they will forever be staples in a man’s magazine rack.  Articles in all of these magazines will help with your well-roundedness.  From knowing what drinks to order to knowing how to put a great outfit together for any occassion, I look to one of these three for inspiration.  Sidenote: Valet has an awesome app that you should definitely download.  Just search the App Store for Valet Magazine.  Like The Reader, Valet comes out with great content five days a week.

Up and Coming: Infinite Magazine is a new magazine that focuses on creative young people who are stepping out on their own to write their own stories.  With both an online and a print presence, you won’t go two days without getting great reads and images from experts in fields ranging from fashion to music.