Is your job setting you up to succeed? - James MacDonald
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Is your job setting you up to succeed?

Is your job setting you up to succeed?

The technology and digital markets are candidate short, meaning if you are a professional in these industries there is a very high chance you’ve been approached with multiple job offers or at least discussions about opportunities over the past twelve months. The urgency  for tech and digital professionals in the industry is growing and the people suitable to fit these roles are getting harder to find. Choosing a job that motivates and drives you to work hard and achieve your goals is extremely important. There is power here to choose a job that is more than just a 9 to 5 but something that interests and inspires you to achieve your goals whether they be personal or professional.

Everyone has different motivators in making their decisions but I believe there are a couple of  key factors you should consider in helping make sure you are putting yourself in the best position to succeed. Two of these factors were highlighted in the book by tennis great Andre Agassi, ‘Open: an Autobiography’.

To provide more context, early in the book Agassi comments about the loneliness he experiences playing tennis;

“Only boxers can understand the loneliness of tennis players – and yet boxers have their corner men and managers. Even a boxer’s opponent provides a kind of companionship, someone he can grapple with and grunt at. In tennis you stand face-to-face with the enemy, trade blows with him, but never touch him or talk to him, or anyone else. The rules forbid a tennis player from even talking to his coach while on the court. People sometimes mention the track-and-field runner as a comparably lonely figure, but I have to laugh. At least the runner can feel and smell his opponents. They’re inches away. In tennis you’re on an island. Of all the games men and women play, tennis is the closest to solitary confinement….”

This sense of loneliness he describes became so powerful that he began to despise the game as a whole. Agassi goes into detail about his mental state when first playing tennis. The trophies, awards and accolades meant nothing to him, he hated tennis as a sport and had no love for the game until he set up his educational institution outside of Vegas The ‘Andre Agassi College Preparatory Academy’, which ultimately gave him a greater sense of achievement than ever before and fueled him to succeed not just for himself but for the good of his organisation. Agassi explains that when he started to do things for other people he began to really see the value in his life. This gave him purpose and allowed him to thrive in his career.  After going through many struggles, ups and downs and different coaches throughout his career Agassi came to a point where he was seemingly at peace and was able to put himself in the best possible head space to succeed;

“It’s not like me to want a win this badly. What I normally feel is a desire not to lose. But warming up before my first-rounder, I tell myself I want this, and I realize precisely why. It’s not about my comeback. It’s about my team. My new team, my real team. I’m playing to raise money and visibility for my school. After all these years I’ve got what I’ve always wanted, something to play for that’s larger than myself and yet still closely connected to me. Something that bears my name but isn’t about me. The Andre Agassi College Preparatory Academy.”

This is an important message we can all look at when assessing different job opportunities. Work shouldn’t be just for financial gain, having a team around you that supports your growth and working in a job or industry where you feel connected will lead to your best work.   

When assessing your current and new job opportunities I urge you to ask yourself;

  1. Is there a team in place to support my growth?
  2. Am I working toward something I actually care about?
  3. Is this a company or industry I can connect with?

Answering these questions should go a long way to making sure you’re in the best scenario to achieve success. There is power in the ability to achieve something that gives you a sense of accomplishment. I’ll leave it with another Agassi quote:

“To be inspired – that’s the secret”.