I wrote about branding in the blog article “Marketing Yourself,” and mentioned, “Communicate truth about yourself or to communicate who you are and what you can do through the facts”.  It is also important to have a goal of how and to what you want to transform yourself.  In order to achieve the goal, we have to make efforts filling gaps between the goal and the current situation and, at the same time, express what we have now as much as possible. 


Talking about myself, when I graduated from the undergraduate school in US, I aimed at becoming my own boss in 40’s through various types of business experiences after gaining a MBA degree in the States.  To do this, I had to earning lots of money for the tuition by working for an investment back.  Becoming my own boss means for me was living in a risky but rewarding life.  As my father was also running his own company, it was quite natural for me to think about becoming entrepreneur.


The time when I thought about gaining a MBA degree was when I was at undergraduate school, right after I became a junior by transferring from Japanese women’s college through admission upon recommendation.  Until the time of gaining bachelor’s degree in arts and science, I was able to strongly consider about a way of living my life.  Many American friends asked me how I would live with a degree in English Literature.  Back in Japan, women with bachelor’s degree usually work as Office Lady (OL) whose main job in the morning was to serve tea for male colleague and clean their desks.  OLs usually worked two to three years at a company and then got married and left.  For those rare women who want to become a professional and continue working after marriage aimed at becoming a secretary.  Therefore, I was lucky to have American friends and professors who asked me questions about my life and how I live.  Of course, I did not want to become one of OLs but I was convinced that with the degree in English, I will not be able to earn money for a long time to maintain economic independence.  I concluded that I should get a master’s degree in Business from a good Business School in the States.  Yes, Economic Independence.  This was one of the answers that I came across when I asked myself, “Hiromi, what would you like to do in your life?”  However, I did have knowledge about economy and other that would be required for Business degree.  Therefore, with some advice from faculty of the undergrad school, I started to look for a position in financial institutions.  This, I believed, was perfect to learn about world economy. 


At the first company that I joined, I was able to learn about interest rates, foreign exchange, and stock market before becoming a bond trader at a Canadian investment bank.  In Japan, the economic bubble had been already creating when I joined the financial market and no one ever doubt about the market to crash.  However, finally, the NY stock exchange collapsed on Black MondayWhen the market collapsed, I bought some stock at Toronto Stock Exchange to earn my tuition for MBA.  I believed that it was the perfect timing for a buy.  Of course my lot was minimal but my boss, without knowing who made an order for how much, blasted in the trading room saying, “Who the hell is buying in this crisis!?  Cancel the deal!”  After a while, he found out the order was from my personal account, he quietly said to me, “You’re crazy, Hiromi.” and left for home.


Now, after experiencing Black Monday, I don’t remember how many of my friends and colleagues were asked to leave.  Some US Primary Dealers had to get integrated to survive.  Observing the restructuring of the financial market, I understood that the future of financial institutions would not be bright.  I changed the timing of going back to the States for MBA earlier within a few years, as a result. 


Usually, it takes time for us to fill gaps between our mid-term goal and our current situations but the working environment tends to change quickly.  Therefore, we have to always observe things changing and become flexible to adjust ourselves accordingly  without changing a long term goal.

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