- A score of 90% is only an “A” in school. In the workplace 90% is only a passing score. Unlike college, there are much higher grades than “A” in the workplace.
- Only the problems in school all have answers. The ability to quickly assess whether a problem has a ready answer, identify how much work is required to get an answer, and when to let it go, is a key skill for the workplace (and life).
- What you do is more important than what you know. School rewards correct answers. The workplace rewards correct results. Getting it done is more valuable than simply knowing what to do.
- Execution is often more valuable than the idea. A mediocre idea can result in success with great execution. A great idea will die with mediocre execution. If you can’t execute, it doesn’t matter whether the idea is great or not.
- Humility and gratitude are as important as creativity and passion. Creativity and passion fire people up! Humility and gratitude keep them working hard with you.
- Culture is more important than title for work satisfaction. Culture is king in the workplace. If you don’t fit with the culture you won’t enjoy what you do, regardless of your job title, compensation or your “dream” job.
- Tests occur in the workplace every day. Every task and responsibility in the workplace is a test. How well you do what you are given. How long it takes. How you treat your fellow employees. And most important, how you deliver to exceed the customer expectations.
- If you don’t have a plan for your career, neither does your employer. Create your own plan. Then measure your career against your personal progress, not just how you progress in the workplace. Your dreams are your own and they are your responsibility to make happen.
- Excelling remains important – regardless of your job. I know it is just your first full-time job. And it is not where you imagine yourself two years from now. But if you don’t excel, you may not get the opportunity to do something else.
- If you don’t apply yourself and work hard, none of the rest of this matters. The essential thing you prove in the workplace is who you are. If you do your best regardless of the circumstances you are essential and investable. If you do not you are just one of the masses. “Luck” and opportunity come to those who deliver every day.
It is easier to close strong, when you start right.
“Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can.”
— Arthur Ashe