The other day a Brainzooming reader told me I was the oldest person she knew creating social media content all the time.

Then she said it was a compliment.

Then we both laughed.

That was followed by an awkward pause.

While her statement clearly CAN’T BE TRUE, being relatively seasoned in business means I HAVE learned many valuable career lessons that would have been great to know when my business career started at Kansas City Infobank.

Going back through recent tweets, here are 9 career lessons for YOUNGER Brainzooming readers from further into a business career:

1. View your entire business career as a portfolio. Manage every element of the portfolio to create your “art.”

2. As a species, humans chase after lots of things we think will be glorious that will really make us miserable.

3. It’s okay to have a list of things you’ll never do and then to let them go without a second thought.

4. Don’t correct someone who has a better perception of you than you have of yourself.

5. Some things we demand answers for are completely insignificant. Keep moving forward.

6. If you read a business case study in a magazine, it’s likely a highly fictionalized work by that point.

7. The thing that pisses you off may just be what saves you. Next time you’re mad, look for what you should be learning.

8. Never underestimate the positive value of a fresh start. They’re incredible. Seek fresh starts out.

9. No amount of helpful advice can really outshine someone making a personal sacrifice to help another person.

Anybody else with a few years of experience have some lessons to add? Mike Brown

If you’d like to add an interactive, educationally-stimulating presentation on strategy, innovation, branding, social media or a variety of other topics to your event, Mike Brown is the answer. Email us at [email protected] or call 816-509-5320 to learn how Mike can get your audience members Brainzooming!

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Mike Brown

Founder of The Brainzooming Group, and an expert on strategy, creativity, and innovation. Mike is a frequent speaker on innovation, strategic thinking, and social media.

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14 Responses to “9 Lessons from Further into a Business Career”

  1. Average Jane says:

    How old can you possibly be? I’ve always assumed that you and I are were fairly close in age.

    • Anonymous says:

      I think I’ve probably got a few years on you! Since you have a birthday coming up, we’ll compare notes at the next #smckc!

  2. Cheri Allbritton says:

    Unlike Average Jane, I’m pretty sure I have a few years on you Mike…so here’s what I ‘d add:

    10.)  Always set aside a day for family and friends and mind rejuventation. Maybe Saturday or Sunday or a day during the week. It doesn’t really matter as long as the only To Do list you’re clearing contains items that involve the people you love. One of those items may be someone else’s memory about you. Make it a positive one.
    11.)  Stay out of personal debt as much as possible and start a retirement fund. Please don’t fool yourself into thinking you have time….you don’t!
    12.)  If you haven’t practiced it already, learn to L-I-S-T-E-N.

    • Anonymous says:

      Those are all great additions Cheri. I’m pretty solid on #11 and #12. #10 . . . well, I’m not so good at that.

      And I don’t remember why, but somewhere along the way I somehow figured you and I were within about a year of each other.

  3. Some great observations, to which I would add:
    1) If you have something worth teaching, share it, but shun the mantle of “expert”…there’s no such thing.
    2) There’s always something worth learning, so practice a smidgen more professional humility than you were practicing yesterday.
    3) Share your ideas. They’re worth absolutely nothing until they start being traded.
    4) Find at least 2 opportunities each day to uplift and inspire others.
    4) Laugh. Giggle. Blow milk out of your nose. 

    • Anonymous says:

      Love these additions, Nicholas! I so appreciate you taking the time to share them (in keeping with #3). #2 should be in everybody’s office!

  4. Anonymous says:

    Hi Mike,

    One of my favorite posts I’ve read in a while. Thank you!

    I’d simply add: allow yourself to embrace melancholy once in awhile; it can actually add value and imbue light into one’s life. A melancholy song, a few tears shed here and there and a reflective, thoughtful period to focus in on what and ‘who’ are important actually can lift you to a new state of enrichment and happiness.

    Cheers, from Texas : )

    Jacqui (@ValueIntoWords)

    • Anonymous says:

      Jacqui – Until the other day, I had NO idea you’d moved; hope everything is going great! I appreciate your suggestion and definitely wouldn’t have thought to add that one. Thinking back to some of the biggest projects I’ve implemented over my career though, I usually get to the point where it definitely takes an emotional release to clear the air and keep going!

  5. nateriggs says:

    I’m going out to the store to get a new black ink cartridge so that I can print this and heg it on the wall in front of my desk.  Wise words, Mike. Thank you…

    • Anonymous says:

      Thanks Nate – be sure to print the comments from Cheri, Nicholas, and Jacqui too. Really appreciated their add-ons!

  6. Karen says:

    Is pulling an all-nighter really necessary?  Many people will work on a project into the wee hours just to say it was finished “on time”.  Is the person on the receiving end staying up into the wee hours to review it?? 

    There may be times when the long night is necessary, but often we put the pressure on ourselves much more than the receiving party ever could. I started asking myself the question, what’s the worst that could happen if this is completed tomorrow?


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