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Seeking a Meaningful Life Finding a Career in the Process …and a Logical Proof that Everything is Going to be OK Spring 2014 Lecture 10 Prof. Dell Can.

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Presentation on theme: "Seeking a Meaningful Life Finding a Career in the Process …and a Logical Proof that Everything is Going to be OK Spring 2014 Lecture 10 Prof. Dell Can."— Presentation transcript:

1 Seeking a Meaningful Life Finding a Career in the Process …and a Logical Proof that Everything is Going to be OK Spring 2014 Lecture 10 Prof. Dell Can I Get an Amen!

2 Obituary of Robert Rines MIT 800 Patents (Sonar / Patriot Missile) Republic of China Patent System Law Degree Professor Helped start a law school in Singapore Accomplished Musician / Composer Loch Ness Monster Hunter Married & Children

3 What Do You Want? By a show of hands, when you look back upon your life, what do you want to have accomplished? “I had a good career & made enough money to support my family. It was all pretty straight forward.” Or “I pursued my passion.” “I changed the world.”

4 You should shoot for both! Very few people who changed the world set out to so. They simply pursued their passion. If you find your passion and pursue it, I guarantee you’ll have both a successful career and a meaningful life. So, enough of the platitudes. How do you do that?

5 8 Step Program to Finding a Meaningful Career 1)Make a list of your strengths (be precise and honest). 2)Make a list of the jobs you think you’d enjoy. 3)Talk to someone who has achieved success in that field. 4)Determine if a) you still think you’d enjoy that job, and b) if there is a high correlation between your strengths and what the job actually entails (be precise). 5)Draw a map plotting out short and long term goals that contemplate where you are today and getting to the job you want (be precise). 6)Find a mentor who can help you along the way. 7)Commit yourself to making the pursuit of that job your job. 8)Once you have committed to this plan: a) set short term goals (1-2 years), b) take action, and c) seek feedback.

6 Some Examples of Personality Traits vs. Jobs SalesSocial Gregarious Honest Deal well with rejection Hunter Marketing/ Bus Dev.Creative Emotional Intelligence Team Oriented / Work well with others AccountingMath Detail oriented Comfortable working for others Stable LawAnalytical / Research oriented Deal oriented / Adversarial Comfortable working for others Stable

7 Some Examples EntrepreneurBrilliant / Insane Thinks differently High tolerance for risk High tolerance for failure Good at dealing with adversity Stubborn Passionate Willing to bear emotionally volatility Dreamer VCHigh risk tolerance Good at managing (difficult) people Analytical Deep understanding of business models & operations Social / Broad Network Deep technical proficiency Decisive Good at dealing with adversity Pattern Recognition

8 8 Step Program to Finding a Meaningful Career 1)Make a list of your strengths (be precise and honest). 2)Make a list of the jobs you think you’d enjoy. 3)Talk to someone who has achieved success in that field. 4)Determine if a) you still think you’d enjoy that job, and b) if there is a high correlation between your strengths and what the job actually entails (be precise). 5)Draw a map plotting out short and long term goals that contemplate where you are today and getting to the job you want (be precise). 6)Find a mentor who can help you along the way. 7)Commit yourself to making the pursuit of that job your job. 8)Once you have committed to this plan: a) set short term goals (1-2 years), b) take action, and c) seek feedback.

9 Roadmap to Becoming a VC High risk tolerance - Join a small startup and help it succeed (2-3 years) - Join a VC firm as an associate Good at managing (difficult) people - Work with entrepreneurs (help them write business plans, raise $) Analytical / Technically proficient - Pick an area of the market (storage, desalinization, wind energy) and get deep and smart Deep understanding of business models & operations - Work in a business in a line job (3-4 years); learn what makes a business have great operating margins Social / Broad Network - Meet and get to know everyone who is relevant in your industry Decisive - Collect information, evaluate, decide….. repeat Good at dealing with adversity - Never take no for an answer Pattern Recognition - Study the past, formulate a framework predicting what will happen in the future

10 How Do Be Passionate About ….? The difference between a good employee and a great employ is passion. Passion can mean a lot of things: commitment, love, hunger, fear, competition. In every one of my companies there is some stellar performer whose effectiveness so far outweigh their peers that there is simply no comparison. That is what employees are looking for. So when you pursue of job, don’t be a resume. Whatever is there area of industry you are looking to jumping into: - study it, know the companies in it - know the cutting edge R&D - know the business models, financials - know the team Be someone who is passionate.

11 Logical Proof Everything is Going to be OK Its scientifically well established that we view are well being on a relative basis. Scientists call this “relative deprivation” theory. As long as I’m not the only one on the subway without a seat or a sandwich, I’m ok. This is wrong. We should view are relative well being against a denominator of billion people. The average household income in the US is $51,000. The average household income globally is: $1,000. Three billion of the seven billion live on less than $2.00 per day. Compared to that base, you are: Safer Richer Smarter Healthier Have access to more opportunities ….than virtually everyone else on the planet.


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