ABL - Always Be Learning
In my 33 year career, I’ve had 36 bosses in 29 roles at 21 companies. Yes, that’s a lot of numbers – and a lot of bosses.
I was fourteen years old when I got my first job as a grocery store clerk earning a whopping $5 an hour – working to repay my debt to my parents for $1200 worth of baseball cards.
Throughout all of these experiences, I’ve continuously looked to accelerate my career and one concept still triumphs above most.
Let me explain:
1. The more you learn, the more you earn. There is a lot of data to back up this quote attributed to Warren Buffet but I’ve seen it in action countless times in my career. You’re a project manager in tech that just learned to code? A marketer with a background in finance? A VP in HR with a decade-long career in sales?
You’ll not only bring a different perspective to the table but according to research, will likely double your lifetime earnings by adding an additional skill when compared to your counterparts in the same job family.
2. You’re not one-dimensional: why should your career be? Simply put: we have many interests and we should explore them at work. This was different a few decades ago when we were instructed to go to college, learn one trade, and then stay in it for our entire career.
I don’t have to tell you that the trends are shifting nor that the pace of change is quicker. Sure it can be intimidating but it can also be freeing.
You can wear different hats. You can fall in and out of love with your career and that’s okay.
Because guess what? You can do something else.
3. Willingness to learn pays off in hiring. I speak a lot about the importance of being coachable. It’s a trait I’ve worked to have in myself and one that I look for in others when hiring.
Instead of hiring Person A that fulfills all of the requirements on paper but stops upskilling – I would much rather hire Person B that doesn’t have all the credentials but actively strives to learn.
Because when the role evolves, guess what? Person B will evolve with it.
What are your beliefs when it comes to continuous learning?