How not to screw up your career

Start­ing a career is daunt­ing. Office polit­ics, poor man­age­ment and unchal­len­ging work are issues that many of us will have to nav­ig­ate in our jobs.

Ryan Hol­i­day’s advice to young career­ists is cyn­ic­al and prag­mat­ic.

The point isn’t just to prove that you’re cap­able, but also that you’re sane. In fact, if you had to pick between the two, being well-adjus­ted the bet­ter one. You can teach people how to do things. You can’t make them nor­mal. In oth­er words, leave your crazy at home.

Have an exit strategy. Know how this all fits into your grand strategy, this is the Start-Up of You. But also have the eas­ily explain­able, non-threat­en­ing goal that you tell people so you can man­euver in peace. If you’re work­ing at a man­age­ment com­pany, don’t tell every­one your goal is to be a stand up comedian. The grand strategy is just for you.

Most import­antly, remem­ber that you are not spe­cial. There were a mil­lion oth­er kids on this path before you and there will be anoth­er mil­lion after. […] What will set you apart, what is rare, is humil­ity, dili­gence and self-aware­ness.

Advice to a Young Man Hop­ing to Go Some­where (Or Get Some­thing From Someone Suc­cess­ful)

2 thoughts on “How not to screw up your career

  1. Kimberly

    This is really use­ful, sens­ible, and obvi­ous if you think about it, but most people don’t. I really need to action some of this stuff rather than just enjoy­ing it/finding it inter­est­ing

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