AKA career lessons from people who have lived them
Sure, not everyone has the same career path, but we can all learn from the same lessons. It might not be the exact same situation or the exact same application, but career lessons are definitely something we should keep an ear out for. After all, there’s no harm in learning from someone else’s experiences.
So we asked people who have been working for quite some time: What’s the best career lesson you can share with someone? With the years to back you up and the people you’ve met, fought and formed relationships with, what’s the best thing you’ve learned?
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The career babies
Work life balance is very important
—Angela, Teacher, working 4 years
You have to like what you are doing
—Frank, Manager, working 5 years
Keep your options open always.
Society’s definition of success isn’t the only definition.
—AL, Graphic Artist, working 6 years
Do your best until you can’t. Leave before you burn out.
—Louise, Writer, working 6 years
Come to terms with the fact that you have to earn your stripes wherever you work.
Leave any sense of entitlement at the door.
—Nicole, Writer/Stylist, working 7 years
Learn grit—the ability to rise again every time you fall.
Don’t take every failing so personally.
—Ana, Business Group Director, working 9 years
1. Always fulfil your promise to your head/boss.
If you can’t, let them know of plans B to Z at least 3 days ahead.
2. Nobody wants to hear excuses, especially not the boss. Apologize and just do better.
If you feel that the you’re not cut out for it or you need help, say so.
3. Boundaries. Know them, respect them
4. If it’s about work, reply even just to acknowledge because liking doesn’t count
5. Find a hobby—work is not life—which is what I need to do
—Sarah, Manager, working 9 years
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The professional veterans
Minimum input, maximum return
—Miks, Banker, working 11 years
Manage your boss
—Emman, Banker, working 11 years
Don’t take too long to figure out what you want and need
—Princess, Analyst, working 11 years
Learn how to delegate but make sure you’ll be there for your people
but have a backup plan when they fuck up. When your people fuck up, it’s still on you, not them.
—Illa, Entrepreneur, working 11 years
Value your relationships, not [just the] work
—Ana, Banker, working 12 years
Find a mentor. Find a sponsor, find someone who will inspire and support you.
At the end of the day, work is a journey—you can learn all the skills but how that journey fares out,
you will need someone to go with you and support you.
—Puff, Marketer, working 12 years
Travel the world. Don’t listen to when they say, “Money is everything.”
—Jonas, Controller, working 13 years
Creative, professional, young or old, there’s always something to work on, something to learn and something to share. Let’s make things a little easier for everyone, ey?
Art Alexandra Lara