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Pieces of career advice from successful business leaders

December 26, 2019

Pieces of career advice from successful business leaders

More often than not, you will receive career advice in your life – a few of them will be good, and a few bad. Of course, it is up to you as to what you do about the advice you received.

The piece of advice can be from your mentor, peer or family – it can help you change the way you go about making your career choices. But also, be sure to ignore the pieces of advice and take the road less traveled to challenge, discover and explore yourself.

It is reported that the successful leaders of today received valuable career advice from their families and loved ones that they still adhere to today. We have compiled a few great career advice from successful business leaders. Get ready to be inspired and learn why it made all the difference.

1. Kevin Harrington: Time is the most valuable thing you have.

My father, Charlie Harrington, was my first and best mentor. He taught me to analyze my day on a dollar-a-minute basis. Every Sunday, I examine the week ahead. I evaluate where to dedicate my time before moving things around. I ask, How long will this take? What’s my upside? What’s the opportunity cost?

I turn down free equity in people’s businesses every day because they want too much of my time: a weekly one-hour call, a monthly face-to-face meeting, a quarterly retreat. But it’s a startup. If it makes $1 million in three years, I’ll get 5 percent, which is $50,000. The math isn’t worth it.

I recently acquired 2 million shares of stock in a public company, trading at 60 cents a share. They only asked for a quarterly board meeting—two in person. The upside made it worth my time.

—Kevin Harrington, inventor of the infomercial, pioneer of the “As Seen on TV” industry, and original Shark on Shark Tank


2. Deepak Chopra: Embrace the wisdom of uncertainty.

In a LinkedIn post last year, Deepak Chopra, author, and founder of The Chopra Foundation said he wished he embraced the wisdom of uncertainty at a younger age.

“At the outset of my medical career, I had the security of knowing exactly where I was headed,” he wrote. “Yet what I didn’t count on was the uncertainty of life, and what uncertainty can do to a person.”

“If only I knew then, as I know now, that there is wisdom in uncertainty — it opens a door to the unknown, and only from the unknown can life be renewed constantly,” he wrote.

3. Steve Jobs: Don’t just follow your passion but something larger than yourself.

Steve Jobs in an interview said to a reporter that “we’re always talking about following your passion, but we’re all part of the flow of history … you’ve got to put something back into the flow of history that’s going to help your community, help other people … so that 20, 30, 40 years from now … people will say, this person didn’t just have a passion, he cared about making something that other people could benefit from.”

Life is more than pursuing your career goals.

Sure, you should give it to you are all for your career, but what about adding something to the community, to the world. That counts more than anything.

4. Tim Ferris – You are the person you associate yourself with

“The best advice I’ve ever received is that you’re the average of the 5 people you associate with most.”
They say “company matters” and that holds true because the more you associate with a certain type of people, you get influenced by their behavior, their opinions, their thought process subconsciously.

Make sure you make friends who are not toxic and those who discuss ideas but not people.

5. Azim Premji – Self-belief is all you need

Azim Premji is the chairman of Wipro, one of India’s biggest companies, which specializes in IT and technology services and consultancy, systems integration and outsourcing. He is also known for his charitable donations to the elementary school system in rural parts of India through the Azim Premji Foundation.

Premji has been recognized across the world for his part in making Wipro one of the fastest-growing companies in India.

“I was 21 and had spent the last few years at Stanford University Engineering School in California. Many people advised me to take up a nice, cushy job rather than face the challenges of running a hydrogenated oil business.

Looking back, I am glad I decided to take charge instead. Essentially leadership begins from within. It is a small voice that tells you where to go when you feel lost. If you believe in that voice, you believe in yourself.”

6. Richard Branson – As long as there is a market gap, there is a business

“If you can improve people’s lives, you have a business. People think, well everything is been thought of,’ but actually, all of the time, there are gaps in the market here and gaps in the market there.”

As long as there’s a market gap, you can create and distribute and make the lives of people better.

There are products out there that are fulfilling all basic necessities of people but there are many loopholes which an entrepreneur can find out if he just looks into the problem faced in day to day activities.

7. Sophia Amoruso – Bringing your best self to work

In her book, Amoruso says, “Everyone has a different personality in the workplace,” “By bringing your best self and not letting the small things sway you, that will allow you to keep rolling ahead in work and in life.”

You have your own original personality, your own talents, and your own authenticity. Bring that to the table.
There are politics and partial decisions involved in the workplace, see to it that you don’t get easily affected by such things and you do your own best work, give your results and stand ahead.

8. Eric Schmidt: Say yes to more things

During his speech at Berkeley 2012, he inspires students to take the steps towards their career because the future just doesn’t happen.

He says in his speech,” Say yes to invitations to a new country, say yes to meet new friends, say yes to learning a new language, picking up a new sport. Yes is how you get your first job, and your next job. Yes is how you find your spouse and even your kids. “

What he tries to convey is to go out of your comfort zone, do what scares you and make your adrenaline rush. That’s the first step to experience something new and build your career.

9. Sheryl Sandburg- Take new challenges

“Always take on new challenges—even if you are not sure you are completely ready.”
—Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook

Never wait for an opportunity or wait to take on a task just because you feel like you are not ready to take on such things. Whenever someone knocks at your door for a new challenge, a difficult task or a huge opportunity to take it.
You should be ready for challenges, not wait till you feel like you are ready.

10. Mark Bartels: Plan your future career before you start your job

In the talk with the Business Insider, Mark Bartels says “We talk about budgets; we talk about planning your finances, but what a lot of people don’t do is plan out the next 12 to 18 or 24 months of their careers,”

Planning and following the goals will take you forward than ever. Planning helps you focus more on your future goal and helps you measure your success. When starting a new job, plan out your long-term goal for that job and what actual end goal is.

Does this take you closer to your end goal?

Plan out your years and take a turn towards the right or left, don’t be glued to the exact plan but make sure it takes you to where you want to reach in your career.

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