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The Secret to Finding Lasting Career Satisfaction

https://www.gsb.stanford.edu/insights/secret-finding-lasting-career-satisfaction

gsb.stanford.edu

The Secret to Finding Lasting Career Satisfaction
The career path for Stanford Graduate School of Business alum Michael Melcher has been anything but linear: He earned a BA in 1986 from Harvard College, served as a foreign service officer for the U.S. government, earned JD and MBA degrees at Stanford University, worked as an attorney with Davis Polk & Wardwell and D.E.

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Looking At The Big Picture

Ask yourself these questions:

  • Values: What do I like to do? What brings out my best?
  • Vision: How do I want to grow? What do I want to create for myself?

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"Incremental efforts add up. You don’t have to do a big dramatic thing to make progress. What you do every day matters more than what you do once in a while."

Michael Melcher

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Don’t Wait Until You’re Unhappy

We tend to only do something about our careers when we have a problem. But if you wait until you’re laid off or dissatisfied, you may take action but it won’t feel authentic.

A better...

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Working Toward a Goal

What you do every day matters more than what you do once in a while.  Incremental efforts do add up.

Like compound interest, if you make steady progress of your goals, you can get...

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Instead of Pondering It, Do It

We learn through experimentation, not by pondering.

We can’t really think our way into the right answer. We just have to try different things and then see how well we learn from those....

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Ask Someone Else How They See You

Ask a friend: "What do you see in me? What patterns are you detecting?"

Often, that will identify some of your core values.

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Chart Your Options

If you are uncertain about your next step, but you have 5-6 job possibilities in your mind, chart out these options and ask:

  • How interesting would it be? Use a 1 to 10 scale to rank i...

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Career Paths Are Not Linear

Every career has transitions and cycles. Accept that.

Don't try to avoid them, rather think about what we can do for that cycle and move forward.

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Inattention caused by multitasking

Inattention caused by multitasking

Recent research describes multitasking as paying insufficient attention to multiple things at once.

Another new study found it is even worse than that - it prevents people from remembering what they've done and seen, especially is they move from screen to screen.

Media multitasking

Moving continually between screen-based activities, such as texting, checking Instagram, or watching a video may make us forget information we want to remember.

Even though we continually devour information, we will be left frustrated because we're not able to bring knowledge to mind to express what we know. In an experimental exercise, researchers found that people who are less able to sustain attention and those who reported being heavy media multitaskers both performed worse at memory tasks.

Strengthening your memory

Remembering occurs best when it's goal-oriented. The things that happen before you begin remembering will affect whether or not you can actually reactivate a memory that is relevant to your current goal.

Paying attention to your attentiveness may help you stay aware and prepared to store new memories of what you are currently doing.

Corporate Speak

Corporate Speak

Corporations have a language that they use while talking in meetings or communicating in email. It’s called Corporate Jargon.

Corporate jargon is a forced and complicated way to express something that can be said in simpler language, and in effect, take less time and mental energy.

Language With No Substance

  • The corporate jargon is often described as fluffy, without any real substance and aimed towards the speaker’s self-inflated ego.
  • Words are substituted for analogies and references that take longer to process, and have the intention of wrapping, hiding or impeding actual, effective communication.

The Emporer's New Clothes

Corporate speak may not mean anything of value to anyone in a meeting, but like the Emperor's New Clothes, no one wants to point out the inefficiency and mind-numbing nature of the constant use of the jargon. Everyone pretends that they are on the same page as everyone else.

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Portfolio career

Portfolio career

Multiple income streams can add up to be equal or more than a full-time salary.

Your career does not have to be a linear journey to be successful, nor do you have to be confined to just one type of work.

Diversify the way you work

The full-stack freelancer has proven to be a new kind of stable where the smart thing to do is to have a diversity of income streams.

You don't have to use the same skill set in all the work you do. You can mix and match the different ways you want to work, how you want to spend your time, the clients you prefer, and the frequency in which you want to get paid.

Your business model

  • Ensure you have a stable income stream before you take attention away from it.
  • Let your audience, customers, and fans tell you what they want. If you can understand when your market wants something from you and if they are willing to pay for it, creating other revenue streams will naturally develop.
  • Testing ideas is essential.
  • Not all projects should be monetized. Some will pay you back in other ways like creatively energizing you or letting you experiment and fail, that may be valuable.