The first years of your career can be brutal.

You're on your own and you have no clue what you're doing.
I wish I had a guide back then so I made one to share with those that are working on career growth.

Here are 11 principles to accelerate your career now:

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1. Hard work is overrated. Consistency is underrated.

It's not about how hard you swing your bat.

It's about swinging over and over again till you learn to hit it out of the park.

Consistency gets you places hard work doesn't.

2. Optimize for learning over salary and role.

A high salary is the byproduct of a valuable role.

A valuable role is the byproduct of a valuable skillset.

And a valuable skillset is the byproduct of valuable learnings.

So start by focusing on learning first.

3. Goals are bullshit.

Successful and unsuccessful people have the same goals.

You never rise to the level of your goals. You always fall to the level of your habits.

Goals are just dreams. Habits make them a reality.

4. Pick a company in a growing industry.

Opportunities are hard to come by at companies in a shrinking industry ― it's a zero-sum game.

Instead, pick a company that has lots of potential to grow.

A rising tide lifts all boats (and employees in that boat).

5. Build skills that are rarely found together.

Example:

Storytelling is a pretty common skill.

So is data analysis.

But when you combine both - you've got an extremely rare and valuable skillset.


6. You gain confidence after doing something hard - not before.

Too many people never try hard things because they think confidence is a precondition when, in reality, it's a side effect.

7. Promote your work shamelessly.

It's your job to communicate the value and impact of your work ― no one else is going to do it for you.

8. A good manager is more important that a good salary.

A good manager will mentor you, champion you and accelerate your career.

A bad one will stall your career and make your life miserable.

Great managers are easily worth over $1m over the course of your career.

9. Just because it's not your fault doesn't mean it's not your responsibility.

Take ownership of your career.

Never complain. Never blame others.

Everything you are thinking and feeling is your responsibility.

10. Never do anything that hurts your reputation.

Skills matter.

But the opportunities you attract depend just as much on your reputation.

It takes a decade to build a reputation.

But one mistake to destroy it.

Act ethically - especially when you have an incentive not to.

11. Work is the local maximum. Life is the global maximum.

Work hard and make the most of your career.

But there is more to life than work and money.

Don't forget to nurture your health and your relationships along the way.