Saturday, July 25, 2009

Ego...success...Joyce and sunshine

I've been contemplating a lot about the role that ego plays in the job search and in the running of companies. Certainly, Entrepreneurs need egos. But when does ego get in the way as companies grow. Steve Jobs is a data point that says maybe never! Others I've seen who were great had/have very little ego. I guess it comes down to a) how you manage it b) how you use it. After all, isn't charisma an output of ego? Don't we want our leaders to be charismatic, isn't that what drives new companies and old to success.

Being in the job market, and doing consulting both mean putting a lot of ego aside....after all, as a consultant, your role is to deliver for the company, not for your ego, it's a quickie relationship, and for it to work it's ALL about the results. In the job search, if you let your ego get in the way, well it is very easy to slip into defensiveness or depression or both. I've been think that James Joyce might have been in a job search when he said...."

The artist, like the God of the creation, remains within or behind or beyond or above his handiwork, invisible, refined out of existence, indifferent, paring his fingernails. "

I think you do need to rise above your resume', get perspective, space, remove the ego, and then get on with it!

I've been trying to view my career as a piece of art, most like a novel. It's got an arc, and a destination, but it's not always been or will it be a straight line. After all, how many of our careers are predictable? For that matter, it does intertwine with our lives too. I was speaking with a old colleague who provided wise advise..."Your next job isn't what you are doing with your life, you are doing so much more..." So if our lives are stories, then our career is just one of the story lines. Then there's family, friends, spirituality and yes, the arc and story of our ego...

Now I am waxing randomly and philosophically, guess that's what happens when you take the kids out of the day. On to a beautiful day in the Seattle with old friends and new, always a nice refrain.



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