Newport, who graduated from Dartmouth College (Phi Beta Kappa) and earned a PhD from MIT, contends that trying to find what drives us, instead of focusing on areas in which we naturally excel, is ultimately harmful and frustrating to job seekers. The title is a direct quote from comedian Steve Martin, who, when once asked why he was successful in his career, immediately replied, 'Be so good they can't ignore you', and that's the main basis for Newport's audiobook.
Skill and ability trump passion. Inspired by former Apple CEO Steve Jobs' famous Stanford University commencement speech in which Jobs urges idealistic grads to chase their dreams, Newport takes issue with that advice, claiming that not only is this advice Pollyannaish but that Jobs himself never followed his own advice.
From there Newport presents compelling scientific and contemporary case study evidence that the key to one's career success is to find out what you do well and where you have built up your 'career capital' and then to put all of your efforts in that direction.
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It was the most important book I have read so far
What makes people love their work? How can I avoid spending my life doing something I hate?
These very important questions, that a lot of people ask themselves, are the subject of this book. Current wisdom says to find your passion and pursue it in your work life. Cal Newport argues that this is a bad idea. Instead, one needs to build skills, or career capital, that can be leveraged to find work you love.
It is the most important book I have read so far. So far, I was asking myself "will this career choice make me happy?" before I had acquired the skills to be good enough in that respect to find happiness doing my work.
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