Life is too precious not to be thoughtful and deliberate about how you allocate your time, talent and treasure. Managing a career can be a complicated topic with many aspects to coordinate and consider. The path we choose and the decisions we make each day have a significant influence on our health, happiness and prosperity.
Surprisingly, how to approach career strategy effectively is rarely taught in schools at any level. Organizations are not in the best position to offer a comprehensive curriculum given that career strategy starts with understanding who you are at a deeply, personal level. The topic we all struggle with had to be demystified.
In 2008, I authored a framework of seven connected strategies to give professionals a process for answering critical questions and shaping their mindset. I continue to evolve it as I learn new ideas and experiences in a new phase of my life.
Even in the light of daily chaos and uncertainty that surrounds our life, there is a sense of calmness and confidence when you have a deliberate and strategic career direction. Start the journey to reach your full potential – we only get one shot.
How do you feel about your answers to the seven questions?
The Know and Target strategies of the Career Strategy Framework set the foundation for finding and activating your unique path. It requires deep introspection of who you are and using unique talents and what you love to target a specific market. It’s a continual process of adapting to the rapidly changing external business environment and where you are in life.
Robert Greene is a master strategist that delves deep into finding your life’s task in his book Mastery. In this YouTube video, he talks about his core ideas for making the most important decision of your life. Learn why he believes that if you are following everybody else you are in trouble. The discussion starts at 21 mins into the video.
On this first day of 2019, take some quiet time to reflect on your 2018 journey and where you want to go in 2019. The choice is yours – follow your unique path to freedom.
For most of my life I have relied on the laws of physics, mathematics and strategy to explain phenomena and influence how I engage with the world. These laws, theorems and concepts influence our thoughts and decisions. Once internalized, the physical and technology worlds can most often be explained simply and logically. Our studies of first order principles establish the foundation for clear, true and rational thinking.
But, success and fulfillment in life requires relationships and collaboration with people both personally and professionally. Every human is unique, often irrational, making it challenging to explain behavior or how best to engage with someone for mutual success. It is well documented that social intelligence is as important or even more important than intelligence quotient (IQ) in life. Just as the laws of science are explained in physics books, we would all benefit to learn the laws that explain human nature.
Robert Greene’s latest book, The Laws of Human Nature, is a masterpiece for helping you become a better person and learning strategies for engaging with the right people while avoiding others. From the opening chapters on irrationality and narcissism to meditating your mortality, it’s a book that will change your life. It will likely provide frameworks and answers to aspects of your life you could not explain. I highly recommend this book for anyone that can relate to the five value propositions outlined on the back cover above. Understanding these laws, are an essential complement to the expertise that you have developed in your specific field of study.
Ryan Holiday interviews Robert Greene on the background and writing of his latest book.
In the interview, Robert Greene highlights that many people don’t know who they are. Ten years ago when I began running career strategy workshops at Microsoft, it became clear that this indeed was the case for most of the people I worked with. I too was challenged with an identity crisis at various stages of my life. People lacked an inner understanding of who they were now, why they behaved in a certain manner and how to collaborate with the wide range of personalities and cultures.
This intent of the “Know” part of the career strategy model is exploring deep into “knowing” as much as we can about ourselves. It’s a never-ending journey as we navigate through different phases of our life. The “Connect” part of the career strategy model outlines principles and virtues for interacting with people to achieve success and fulfillment.
The Laws of Human Nature has been added to the recommended reading list that aligns with the Know and Connect domains. Just as a new pair of glasses sharpens vision, internalizing these laws will adjust your mental model on how you carry yourself and see the world.