Happy Friday! Today, do the hardest things on your list first.
Getting lost in email or mindless tasks can suck away much of your energy. It’s also a great way to avoid tackling the tough projects. But ultimately, when you’re not focusing your greatest energy on your most important tasks, you’re wasting it. He’s a big proponent of doing the most challenging,most important things first-thing in the morning when you’re rested and less prone to distraction.
“First thing always is always believe in the product or the project. Most of the times when a guy says ‘hey give me a million, I’ll turn it into five,’ that shit never happens like that. A lot of times you have to believe in the product. For example, this company I’m working with, TIP Solutions, their whole thing is about building call management technology for smartphones. For everybody. Because we’ve all be on a call on a cellphone looking for a way to improve people’s mobile communication. When I saw this company I’m like ‘yeah, everybody would like that.’”
"I went to work for a startup where the job I took was never posted," John Gannon writes at the Daily Muse. "I interviewed with the CEO of one of the most successful open source software startups—for a job that didn’t technically exist yet."
How does such surreptitious serendipity happen?
“On Sunday nights, will you dread going back to work on Monday? In three years, will you want to be at the same company? These are all small, but important things. When ‘work doesn’t seem like work,’ quality of life soars.”
“Geniuses produce a lot of crap before they get to the good stuff.”
American culture places a premium on the ability to speak confidently before a crowd. Career counselors will tell you it’s a sure path to professional success. Compelling speakers can achieve positions of power and wealth.
"Think of it like a planned conversation. You know where the conversation’s going…but you’re loose enough in the moment to make it up a little bit as you go along. You want to have 80 percent of it prepared and allow 20 percent to be spontaneous.”
"Unless you have a retail store or office, it doesn’t make sense to put physical address in your signature. Include one or two social icons but not all of them. The more choices you offer, the less likely any of them will be clicked.”
“If you were a box of cereal, what would you be and why?”
Bed Bath & Beyond, Sales Associate interview.
- "Why don’t you tell me about yourself?"
This question, often the interview opener, has a crucial objective: to see how you handle yourself in unstructured situations. The recruiter wants to see how articulate you are, how conﬁdent you are, and generally what type of impression you would make on the people with whom you come into contact on the job. The recruiter also wants to learn about the trajectory of your career and to get a sense of what you think is important and what has caused you to perform well.
There are many ways to respond to this question correctly and just one wrong way: by asking, “What do you want to know?” You need to develop a good answer to this question, practice it, and be able to deliver it with poise and conﬁdence.
The right response is twofold: focus on what interests the interviewer, and highlight your most important accomplishments.
“Every now and then go away, have a little relaxation, for when you come back to your work your judgment will be surer. Go some distance away because then the work appears smaller and more of it can be taken in at a glance and a lack of harmony and proportion is more readily seen.”
More than any other aspect of your job, your direct supervisor has the power to make or break you. Research has shown most people that leave their jobs, don’t leave the organization, they leave the person that they directly reported to. If this person is the biggest indicator of how successful you will be in your new work, shouldn’t you know as much as you can about him or her?
- Talk to people within the company.
- Ask detailed questions during the interview. (What type of person do you like to work with? Describe a time when you had to discipline one of your staff. If I talked to your staff, what would they tell me about you?)
- Do research online before showing up.
“I’ve started keeping a running list of personal open loops: buying plane tickets, getting my hair cut, getting a chair for the guest room, buying new sunglasses.
I then assign myself one big project, and two smaller projects per week. Three projects is doable, so I don’t feel like I’m mentally overloaded. On the other hand, three projects is enough to make progress.”
“The traditional interview questions do not allow a candidate to demonstrate their uniqueness, personality, or dynamic skillsets,” explains Shara Senderoff of Intern Sushi, “I love to catch candidates off guard with the following:
- What color is your personality?
This gives me a look into how a candidate views themselves without having to ask them for a list of adjectives. When you ask in this manner, you can identify traits about the candidate based on social interpretations of colors that may not have been apparent in that first interview, even when you can’t get a candidate to go into depth with his or her answer. I’ve also found this to be a great lead in question because it relaxes the candidate and allow them to think outside-of-the-box.
- Tell me three things you could do with a brick.
This always lends itself to very original thinking and believe it or not, demonstrates experience and maturity or lack thereof. At this point I could create a list of over 100 unique responses and with each response I can understand how an individual thinks and what they’ve been through.”
"It’s compassion. It’s humility. It’s saying thank you. It is always putting yourself in the other person’s position. I know it might sound weird, but empathy is one of the greatest creators of energy. It’s counterintuitive, because it’s selfless.” (!)
—Meet Angela Ahrendts, soon-to-be Apple’s Retail Chief. Her goal? Making Apple shine again.