One of the regular feeds I read is not on Warcraft, it’s about business – and today Peter Bregman on Harvard Business‘s Blog wrote a short great piece on Preparing for the next Downturn. It’s personable, reflective, succinct, and enjoyable.
OK, it is also miles off what I usually blog about, but if you’re connected to a business you might get something out of it. Go read it; and if you need convincing the section that made me pay attention was this advice:
- Do work you love. Choose work you’d be happy doing the rest of your life. That almost guarantees you’ll be great at it. In demand, even during hard times. Hopefully it will be profitable. If not, at least you will have enjoyed it. If the money disappears, the fulfillment will still be there.
- Build strong relationships based on who you are, not what you achieve. Your character is something you can control. If your business fails, you may lose the friends who hung around for a piece of the action, but you won’t lose the ones who hung around for a piece of you. As long as you are surrounded by people who trust you and whom you trust, rebuilding from a loss is likely. Also, research points to strong relationships — not money, not power, not title or position — as the determining driver of happiness. And after losing money or a business, your state of mind is critical.
- Spend less money than you have. No matter how much or little that is. Do everything possible not to go into debt. If you’re in debt, do everything possible to get out.
Now I’m not expecting a downturn any time soon (maybe its tomorrow – who knows), but I am expecting professional services to continue to change focus, and as changes occur both people and business will need to recognise what affect that has on them and the people they interact with. It could get ugly, it may mean folks learning some hard truths, and will hopefully lead to growth.
It also kind of relates to what a mate said online a week ago about the “perfect role”. We were discussing how he’s changed roles a few times in his company, and now may have out grown the progression path. So What does he do now? And like any good business man he’s already starting preparing himself and thought about what he’s after. The goal is to aim for work which is:
- Doing good work,
- with good people,
- for good money.
He said it so well, that I had to share it. Combine those two sets of goals and I think business and work life becomes pure enjoyment.
It made me think. Ponder even.