Martha Joh Reeder-Kearns

Martha Joh Reeder-Kearns - A professor and an author

"Where are you going?" This simple yet poignant question is at the core of Martha Joh Reeder-Kearns' book, "Ready, Set, Go!"

Kearns, an adjunct professor in the College of Business at Montana State University wrote "Ready, Set, Go!" a how-to guide on taking control of one's professional future. Inspired by her students to write the book, she saw a need for young people, particularly college age, soon-to-be grads, to outline their career goals clearly. "I think they (college students) are at the point in their lives when they know it is time to take responsibility and control," she said, "but they simply don't have the confidence and clear direction to do it."

The heart of her inspiration to write the book, however, came from home. As a mother, Kearns acknowledges that it is often difficult to impart much needed wisdom to her own children. She explained, "That is no doubt the basis for the expression, 'a stranger can teach your child in a short time that which you cannot teach in a lifetime.'" Kearns suggests this book for parents in her shoes that need a tool for communicating insight and advice to their children.

The underlying message of Ready, Set, Go!, is definitive - The world is at your fingertips. Believe it! You are limited only by your vision, direction, and determination, -- or lack thereof! This message, together with the evaluative process of discovering one s own strengths, talents, needs, and desires, and the step-by-step tool and skill building exercises, provides the impetus and opportunity to set and to reach goals unique to each reader. Kearns said, "From the very beginning, "Ready, Set, Go!" guides the reader to establish what is really important in the long run and then guides them on their way to make that happen!"

Kearns identified a number of individuals who have benefited from her book, including a former student, Jessica Mackley, who said, "I love it! Each step is broken into manageable tasks so the process does not seem so daunting."

Recently honored among 17 other Montana State University authors, Kearns was recognized for her literary accomplishments by MSU President, Geoffrey Gamble. Her book, however, is catching the attention of more than just her peers and students in Montana. Quincy Martin III, Director of Career Services at Lamar University wrote, "This book will change the lives of those who aspire to live out their dreams." And Megan Shaw, a junior at the University of Virginia said, "'Ready, Set, Go!' is very cool structured and concise I am completely excited."

After the book was written, Kearns says she was not sure how to package it. Her experience in marketing and insight as a marketing professor provided a unique opportunity to explore the possibilities with her students a good demographic cross-section representing the largest portion of her target market. Her marketing students broke into teams and competed in a simulated Marketing Design/Concept Presentation in which they made a pitch for the best cover design. The winning design was then actually created by a student, Kalynne Lee, a graphic design major at MSU. The cover for Ready, Set, Go!" which uses a vibrant combination of orange and yellow was born!

Currently, Kearns is working on a revised version of "Ready, Set, Go!" This new edition will be more comprehensive, providing specific examples of tools and exercises for use in the job search. She then plans to complete its sequel, which she plans to title "And the Cream Always Rises" or "How's Your Penmanship?" In this book, Kearns will address professional success from the perspective of many successful business persons, while providing provocative questions for self evaluation, sharing insight and advice for improvement and movement to the top, and challenging readers to "make their move."