Jillian is a renowned American novelist as well as a senior management consultant at the Segal Group. She is an award-winning corporate writer with a record of success in developing strategic communications programs designed to help organisations achieve large-scale change. She is the author of four novels; her newest novel, THIS COULD HURT (HarperCollins), offers a satiric look at the corporate world. She's also the author of three other novels, two of which were national bestsellers. Her first novel, HUNGER POINT, was published in 1997, and became the basis for an original Lifetime movie of the same name, which first aired in 2003. She holds an MFA from NYU and a BA from Barnard College/Columbia University.
I refuse to be the office Den Mother. True, I’m perfectly suited for the position: middle-aged, middle manager, generally forgiving, with a deep understanding of my business (corporate communications). Also true: I’m a mother in real life. But of all the roles I’ve played in my career — and after several decades in management consulting, there’ve been several — Den Mother would be the absolute worst.
"Be regular and orderly in your life, so that you may be violent and original in your work."— Marcelle Proust. I’ve eaten the same breakfast—Cheerios, frozen raspberries, skim milk, and black coffee—every day for the past 35 years. I’ve had the same job—management consulting—for the past 22.
The following is an essay by Jesse Kornbluth on HeadButler in conversation with Jillian Medoff. Ursula Le Guin had contempt for most modern novels, which she described as “fiction about dysfunctional urban middle-class people written in the present tense.” Me too. Every week I get a pile of books by noted writers, and every month I give a large bag of books away. Why? They’re all “bubble books” — written about white people who live in one of 20 American zip codes.
As a management consultant, I talk about money all day. Since it’s my client’s money—not my own—these conversations are more transactional than emotional; they’re not personal, it’s business. When I talk about my own money (particularly my book money), however, it’s entirely different. Offering even cursory details has the air of confession; I feel exposed, vulnerable and can barely choke out words. I’d rather describe my darkest, dirtiest sexual fantasies than tell you how much I’ve earned writing novels. But this essay is about my corporate career, which means it’s mostly about money; to tell it right I have to come clean.
A few weeks ago, I met a woman (let’s call her Andrea) who doesn’t believe transgender people deserve special protections, either at her company or under the law. She made this clear during an industry conference on discrimination and diversity. The moderator had been explaining how many Fortune 500 firms were adopting policies on restroom usage with the goal of inclusivity, when Andrea suddenly interrupted her.