Sunday, September 12, 2010
Work in Progress
It has been just some time since I have started work. Hardly a few months back I was a graduate fresh out of college, ready to take on the world with my brainstorms. If you would look around, none of them seem to have reached any of you yet :-)
Things haven’t really been as fast paced and exhilarating as I expected yet. But today, when I think about it, slowly and steadily a number of things have changed. The most important thing work has brought in my life is the same as any major incident does – perspective.
I came to work with a number of aspirations. Noting really concrete, except the cliche overdose of ambition. The first lesson I learnt at work was that enthusiasm cannot be faked. It is something I am still learning. The only way to do something really well is being interested,genuinely interested, and that crucial factor really does change the way you work. So it seems that the only solution to that is to always do what excites you.
But the second lesson I learnt was that work is not fun. It seems like a contradiction with the first lesson. No matter how glamorous a profile sounds, the bottom line is that when one has to go day in and day out doing it, the charm wanes off. But the beauty of it is that the only solution is to accept from the very beginning that work isn’t fun. That it isn’t fun for anybody, no matter what they say. So, when you expect nothing, you enjoy every good thing that comes your way. With that outlook, you only keep looking for interesting things you can possibly do within the things available to you.
There is so much to learn out there, its simply overwhelming. Another thing I learnt is that there always will be quite a large number of people smarter than you. But over the long run, does it matter so much? After going through a zillion profiles of distinguished people on the net (yep, I do get distracted easily at work!), the one thing I can say with reasonable certainty is that there are just too many successful people out there. Which, I think, means that if you can stick in there, stay interested and put in the effort, sooner or later you are going to start getting things right. There just cannot be so many brilliant people in the planet. Therefore, most must be going through the old fashioned way of putting in the effort and doing things that interest them.
Here, at least in our generation, we are a market that rewards specialists rather than generalists. Having a well rounded personality is not really such a big necessity to succeed. If you are good with people, there is a job cut out for you. The same applies to those who are good with numbers but hate people. Of course, there are careers which require both qualities. But the point is that there are careers which don't. The problem only arises when you seek to be someone whose qualities you neither have and neither want to develop. Then, there will always be a mismatch. Figuring that out, that is, my own limitations vis a vis what I aspire to be, is something I am far from figuring out...
Seems like I have my work cut out for me (for now) after all :-)