[Podcast] Earbud_U, Season Five, Episode # 6 – Randy Shain

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[Podcast] Earbud_U, Season Five, Episode # 6 – Randy Shain, Author, 173 Pages Every College Student Must Read, Entrepreneur, Speaker, Mentor & Coach

[Podcast] Earbud_U, Season Five, Episode #6 - Randy Shain

Dear 2017 Graduates of High School and College-

Congratulations, you have come to the end of a long, traditional, mostly academic journey, whose steps and path were mainly decided for you by other people.

Now, upon graduation, you are in charge of your own decisions. And, where you may wind up at the end of the path known as your life.

I have been thinking a lot about your path, future conflict, and where you might wind up as adults.

I will not lie to you: Your seeming multiplicity of choices about when, how and why to start on your path really comes down to one deeply black and white choice. No matter what you have been told by professors, faculty members, or parents, the choice really comes down to answering unequivocally and thoroughly one black and white question:

Do you want to work or not?

Your work is not your job.

Your work is also not your passion.

I am not going to write here and tell you to “follow your passion.” That is often given, facile, advice provided to you by well-meaning, but misguided, people who operate organizations that may seek to hire you post-graduation. But more likely than not, they won’t.

But more likely than not, they won’t.

When you answer the much more interesting and pivotal question about whether or not to work in your own mind and heart, and to your own satisfaction, then you can make all of the other decisions that will cascade dividends throughout your entire life.

Let me paint you a picture:

I decided after the first ten years of being in the working world after college, that I wasn’t going to work a job—any job—another day in my life.

Think about that.

Now, make no mistake, I work at my business.

I work at my corporate training gigs.

I also work when I advise clients, take them through the sales process and get profit at the end.

I work when I write blog posts, do research, create videos and even do my audio podcast.

Like the one right here I did today with Randy Shain, author of 173 Pages Every College Student Must Read. But go get it after you read the rest of this.

In the traditional understanding of “labor,” both the Marxist and the Capitalist have it wrong: Labor is something that you can do for no money. And that labor—the labor that you decide needs no compensation—will assuredly be the labor that reflects your truest passions, desires, interests and goals.

And—trust me when I write this—money soon follows.

Your job (current or future) is not your work, college and high school graduates. Your job is merely a series of tasks that you accomplish in an organization in the pursuit of someone else’s passion.

This does not excuse you from performing in said job with excellence. As a matter of fact, it is your moral and ethical duty to perform any job task that you take on in the pursuit of working another’s passion, with excellence and moral verve.

At this point, you may be thinking, “This guy is crazy. First, he tells me that he’s not going to tell me to pursue my passion. Then he tells me something that sounds remarkably similar to that advice that I hear very often.”

Let me be even clearer: Many people, from James Altucher to Tim Ferriss talk a lot about “choosing yourself.” This is the idea that no one—not a boss, a parent, an authority figure in government or anybody else—can truly provide your life with security and meaning anymore. The rules, the safety net, and the promises of the Industrial Revolution are dead and gone. They represented a brief, flashpoint in world history and humanity is gradually and fundamentally, moving away from those promises, all the way from cradle to grave. What this means is you have to pick yourself and do the hard work of actually building yourself up. You have to research and employ the tools that are laying around everywhere for free on the Internet—but that you haven’t been fully integrated into for the last 22 or so years—to develop yourself and your truly meaningful work.

This is the work of your life that you have to choose to do. Or not

Yes, answering, truly answering, the question about whether or not you really want to work, means that you will have to commit to doing two—or more—things at once. You will have to delay gratification, show grit and persistence in the face of rejection, and preserve empathy and remain courageous, in the face of dismissal, passivity, and societal apathy.

School didn’t teach you how to deal with this.

Work—in the way that people traditionally think about it—won’t teach how to deal with this either.

The church and your volunteer civic life may have gotten close to teaching you these lessons.

These fine line distinctions that come from committing to one choice and doggedly sticking to it. But I can guarantee you that the rich, meaningful life for which you are searching, will become available to you if you answer this one question firmly, unequivocally and then act on it in the same fashion.

Oh, and by the way, don’t worry about all of those banks and student loan debt that you’ve piled up while dutifully learning and regurgitating the meaningless lessons of a dead, industrialized system. There are plenty of smart people out here who are tap dancing as fast as they can to undo the banking system, which is the second to the last edifice of the old Industrial system.

That is their passion.

Their true work.

If you really want to do something about your debt, go get a job working at one of these organizations.

They are growing, they are hungry and no one sees them coming.

So.

Do you want to work or not?

Connect with Randy in all the ways that you can below and click on the player above to listen to his thoughts on all of this:

Randy Shain on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/randy.shain.7

Randy Shain on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/randy-shain-68b03010/

One on One Mentors Website: http://www.oneononementors.com/about/

One on One Mentors Blog: https://www.facebook.com/oneononecollegementors

One on One Mentors on Twitter: https://twitter.com/oneononementors

 

An Academic Question

By | Emotional Intelligence, Advice, Blog, Education, Entrepreneurship, Leadership, New Posts, Organizational Development, Persuasion, The Future & The Singularity

The question that academics should be asking (and answering) is this one: “What value do I add to a college students’ experience in a world where information is just a Google search away?”

The answer to this question requires academics to admit, out loud, that research may not be the best way to add value to a students’ experience in the wider world.

The answer to this question requires academics to admit, out loud, that the systemized expansion of the administrative class in colleges and universities may be a value subtraction rather than a value-add for students.

The answer to this question requires academics to adopt a posture that ensures that acquiring tenure is not about research that no one reads, publishing in a few august journals that can’t be accessed via Google, and then maybe teaching some classes.

The answer to this question requires academics to position themselves as true advocates of student learning, rather than giving lip service to the thought.

The answer to this question reduces class sizes, increases educational quality (higher education, that is…there are other questions to answer for K-12) and reduces the impact of the administrative class—and renders opaque the ‘black box’ of administrative decisions.

The answer to this question allows real, lifetime, impactful learning to occur inside of the institutions that we all know and love. Learning that becomes less about lecturing and information transfer (that’s what Google and Youtube are for) and becomes more about coaching, encouraging and watering minds.

There are a few academics who are asking—and answering—this question, but not nearly enough, not nearly loud enough, not nearly often enough, to bring the genuine change that students—both now and in the future—will need to meet the challenges of an ever more confusing 21st century.

Three Places to Thrash

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When faced with a project there are three places to thrash:

Early—before the project begins.

Middle—as the project is proceeding.

Late—as the project ends.

When you (or your team) thrashes early, brainstorming becomes a way to develop new ideas. Speed and immediacy become the primary goals of early thrashing: Speed to actionable ideas and immediacy to the implementation of action, moving toward accomplishing end-of-project goals.

When you (or your team) thrashes in the middle of a project, brainstorming becomes a place to hide. Hiding emotionally, “getting to know your team,” or struggling to decide about the efficacy or practicality of an idea, become the unstated, primary goals. Speed becomes less important than looking good to peers, and groupthink really kicks in at this point, bogging down the implementation process.

When you (or your team) thrashes at the end of a project, brainstorming becomes a place of panic, anxiety, and on some teams (or with you) a place of abject fear. The combination of pressure to ship something out the door encourages a mindset and attitude focused around speed (but for negative reasons) and impatience with people and processes. The implementation process recedes in the face of the attitude of “just get it done.”

Thrashing—that is brainstorming a direction, deciding on an approach, planning a process, managing opinions and conflicts, and implementing a plan for action—should be done early, rather than late if you’re really interested (or your team is really interested) in shipping a product, idea, or service out the door and direct to the market.

If I Have A Dollar More Than You…

By | Emotional Intelligence, Blog, Conflict, Conflict Communication, Conflict Engagement, Conflict Resolution, Entrepreneurship, New Posts, The Future & The Singularity

If I have a dollar more in my pocket than you do in your pocket at this moment, by all modern monetary conceptions of wealth, I’m richer than you.

If I have a dollar less in my pocket than you do in your pocket at his moment, by all modern monetary conceptions of wealth, I’m poorer than you.

If I add a dollar more of value to the economy through the writing of this blog post, and you gain more than a dollars’ worth of value from reading this post, then who is richer and who is poorer?

Value is hard to quantify (it always has been) but if the market doesn’t figure out a way for more people to add more value in ways that dovetail with their innate talents and skills (that may never have been valued before) then we’re all in a lot of trouble.