If something is important enough to have a meeting about, then a table must be found and people must travel to sit at it. Photograph: Getty

At 10.30am one day last week I got a reminder on my phone saying that at 11am I had to join a conference call. I spent the next 30 minutes mildly drea(...)

A male chief executive’s ideal book club  is just like a board meeting. Photograph: David Sleator

About a decade ago the editor of the Financial Times invited me to a dinner party at his house along with a dozen important people. I was slightly dre(...)

Jeff Bezos, chief executive officer of Amazon.com: “Our culture is friendly and intense, but if push comes to shove we’ll settle for intense.” Photographer: Mike Kane/Bloomberg

Last week, after a long period of stupidity from the corporate world, three astonishingly sensible things passed over my screen all at once. Two of th(...)

Doing expenses: “I started the job at 3.30pm and by 5pm was close to tears.” File photograph: Getty Images

Coming back to work after two weeks away I felt so out of the swing of it and so overburdened with undone things, I did what I almost never do and mad(...)

The head of Accenture said  he is going to free all 330,000 of his staff from the charade of the annual job appraisal. Photograph: Getty Images

Last week I did the most unexpectedly uplifting thing I’d done in ages. I needed cheering as I’d just sat through a documentary in which the brilliant(...)

Recruiters and managers are so faceist that the good-looking have been found to earn some 10 per cent more than the bad-looking. File photograph: Stockphoto/Getty

Not long ago I found myself addressing a room full of newish hires at one of the big four accountancy firms. As I surveyed the crowd, I noticed someth(...)

Missing skillset: Antony Jenkins, the former chief executive of Barclays. Photograph: Toby Melville/Reuters

In the official statement from Barclays last week announcing the sacking of Antony Jenkins as CEO, three little words stood out. At first I did not no(...)

Microsoft  chief executive Satya Nadella: “I want to share more on the overall context and connective tissue between our mission, world view, strategy and culture.”   To have a mission, vision and world view is greedy, but to have so many abstractions with lots of connective tissue between them leaves one feeling sick.    Photograph: Jason Redmond/Reuters

About 10 days ago, Satya Nadella sent a 1,500-word email to all staff to tell them about Microsoft’s new mission statement. A reader duly forwarded th(...)

Taking part in a workout outside  the New York Stock Exchange  after Fitbit’s  IPO in New York earlier this month.  “It is a dismal sort of status symbol that says ‘I am up to date, I am fit’ and is an invitation to people with bare wrists to feel out of date and out of shape.” Photograph: Michael Nagle/Bloomberg

During a long meeting the other day, I found my eyes straying to the wrists of the people sitting around the table. On the lightly tanned arm of the w(...)

Every chairman will say his board is ego-free. Photograph: Getty Images

Last week I received an email inviting me to join a panel of self-important people talking about something I do not know much about. I said no. It was(...)