Book Review: So good they can't ignore youOct 13, 2016 2 minute read
Do you feel stuck in your job? Do you feel you don’t like any profession? You have no idea what to study? So good they can’t ignore you is the right book for you. It is a data driven book about real life examples of successful, and not so successful individuals. So good they can’t ignore you revolves around the idea that following your passion won’t get you anywhere. Instead it proposes to look at your job with a craftsman’s mindset until you become so good they can’t ignore you.
Industry leaders usually have significant amounts of control over what they do. They choose what to work on and how to do things. Control is what many of us crave for. So good they can’t ignore you illustrates several individuals’ path to gain control over their careers. Hint: None of them followed their passion.
Caveat: Only pursue more control if you have evidence other people are willing to pay for it.
Career capital are the skills you have that are both rare and valuable and that can be used as leverage in defining your career
Making enough Career capital is the safest way to gain control over your career.
Employers will usually promote you once you have enough career capital. Beware though, most of these promotions will limit your ability to gain control over your career.
Example: The best QA technician gets promoted to QA supervisor. Suddenly she’s working twice the hours and has practically no time to spend with her family.
The Craftsman’s mindset
So good they can’t ignore you illustrates how the Craftsman’s mindset is the best way to gather Career capital. Think about your job like a craftsman would do. Practice deliberately to become better. You need to get good at what you do before you can get good work. Moreover, try to incorporate frequent feedback into the practice.
Example: Don’t write the entire book before somebody else reads it. Share each chapter with as many people as possible and incorporate their feedback.
Talent is overrated. The majority of the leaders in their fields are so because they spend countless hours practicing. Practice outside of your comfort zone. Practice to get better.
Finally, the book describes the concept of the Adjacent Possible. How breakthroughs are only possible if they’re built incrementally on top of what’s already possible.