Book Review: Escape From Cubicle Nation

IMG_3771 [Photo by joelogon] (CC BY-SA 3.0)

I read this book while travelling across Nepal. Actually, I read most of it while hanging out in a lovely Nepali town called Pokhara, with beautiful mountains and Lake Phewa Tal surrounding me. It was during those times, that I felt free.

What drew me to reading this particular book?

I’ll tell you why. A few weeks before getting into this book, I actually finished up with my last “job”.

It was the last time that I was engaged in some sort of 9 to 5, full-time work as a Programme Officer for the United Nations.

I did enjoy the work, and I learned alot, although I was constrained at the desk for most of the time – perhaps more than I would have liked, and there were too many times when I sat at my desk bored and unchallenged and unfulfilled. I didn’t like the cynicism. I didn’t like the hierarchy. I didn’t like the bureaucracy.

And it’ll probably be the last time I’ll ever work in a traditional sort of job with pre-defined hours for a boss, ever again.


So that’s what drew me to read Pamela Slim’s “Escape from Cubicle Nation.”

In addition, I also liked the title! It grabbed me, because I could relate. I didn’t want to work in a conventional office again where I had to drag myself to work.

Escape and Be Free - Entrepreneurship

From Prisoner to Entrepreneur

The book Escape From Cubicle Nation: From Corporate Prisoner to Thriving Entrepreneur by Pamela Slim is meant to inspire those people who hate their jobs to start their own small business as an alternative. While the idea is appealing, very few actually try this because the process can feel as scary as jumping off a cliff.

No matter how stressful or boring a job might be, it is hard for most to give up the salary and benefits that it provides. However, for some people making this leap can be the best decision of their lives.

Pamela Slim is a former corporate training manager who decided to go solo twelve years ago, and has found much happiness by doing so. She started a blog in 2005 called Escape From Cubicle Nation to help others make the same transition, and it quickly attracted a loyal following and lots of media attention.

Highlights of the Book – “Life First, Business Second”

Pamela Slim also conducts workshops on various book topics, including how to decide what to do with your life. Slim spends several chapters discussing how to get in touch with what’s important to you. Even if you currently have no intention of quitting your job, advice in the book can help you to protect yourself from future layoffs.

Recommendations include developing a wide social network, investing in personal development and pursuing a small business on the side. Her “life first, business second” approach involves becoming clear about what you want from life, including what your ideal life would be, and then creating an entrepreneurial vision to help you pursue this goal.

One of Slim’s key messages is that it’s important to pursue work that you’re passionate about. Finding work that people will pay you to do which you also have great passion for and that plays to your natural strengths is what she terms the “sweet spot”.

What Are You Passionate About?

For me, I realized that entrepreneurship, personal freedom and helping other people were very important to me. These are ideals that I am passionate about, and that’s why I’ve dedicated this blog to social entrepreneurship, and helping you get passionate about your life and work too.

How about you?