Jeremiah Owyang created a great post for career advice to those within corporations–his disclaimer was that these principles apply to moving up within companies, not entrepreneurially. I actually think some are universal, so here’s a recap, the entrepreneurial view and my a few career tips of my own:
- Learn something new every day (this isn’t just career advice, it’s life advice and how to stay youthful)
- Often, the fastest way Up is Out (not so applicable entrepreneurially)
- Reverse engineer the job you want (note out of the entrepreneur’s playbook–“no one would pay me to do this, so I had to create a company that lets me do it”)
- Education matters, but not as much as you thought (in fact, as an entrepreneur, it could get in your way. I know a lot of companies that took off with wild success because the founders didn’t know the challenges to getting there.)
- You are a company of one (nope, not in an entrepreneurial firm. you’re a-players pulling together with single minded-goals or you die).
- Develop your plan, and put it in writing (other than paul newman’s company, haven’t heard too many successes entrepreneurially that didn’t have something written down on a napkin, placemant or even b-plan. how else are you going to ignite and inspire others towards your vision?)
Here are my additional builds on Jeremiah’s list:
1) Think like your boss, then out think them. Know what’s important to them (usually core business drivers) and then bring innovation that outstrips the status quo.
2) Add real value and you’ll find it more enjoyable. So many can but don’t. If you add real value you’ll make others around you successful (not the objective in many organizations) and become a core asset
3) Be willing to put your job on the line every day. Anyone willing to say “I’ll bet my job that I’m right on this,” probably won’t have their job at risk. Shows confidence, conviction and decisiveness.
Rebuttal to Huperniketes: don’t reveal salary history at your own risk. If you and the employer can’t qualify-in or -out an opportunity quickly, you’re wasting each other’s time. I’ve also subscribed to Coleen Bensen’s philosophy about not being all about the money. By making a game of the compensation discussion you’re putting money first and it will shout louder about your values and objectives than anything else you say.