I've had a bunch of friends asking for career advice recently and my advise is always some version of the same message:

Don't treat your career options as a deterministic path from A -> B
It's a category error to think that you can equate your current identity and label with a future identity and label.

Even a known label like "vp marketing" is a wildly different situation and reality depending on company, size, industry etc.
The failure mode here is to try and do some hard thinking to "figure out what you want to do"..

When reality has a funny habit of being more chaotic and unpredictable.
In reality any career change is a negotiation and exploration of different identities, labels, skills and (importantly) ~networks~!
We think of the job market as being legible in the sense of job search engines and job titles.

But there's a ton of dark matter involved in getting a new job.

People get jobs that are poorly defined & only loosely map to the title. And they get them through intros and referrals
All of this boils down to a situation where you should be creating the conditions for a new job to emerge, not chasing a single idea of a job title (or company).
The book Working Identity by @HerminiaIbarra really helped me understand this idea:
But here's the punchline:

Blogging is by far and away the easiest, fastest and most effective way to cultivate this open ended iterative career change.

Not blogging in the sense of viral LinkedIn thinkfluencer, but blogging in the small b blogging sense.
Networked writing and blogging enable this kind of iterative exploration of your own identity while *also* creating new networks, connections and surface area.

In effect blogging is the way to create fertile conditions for a new career to "appear out of nowhere"
More to this whole idea here: littlefutures.substack.com/p/lf10-permiss…
I like this visual but it doesn't quite capture the idea of *how* to navigate and move across the map... How to bring a sense of agency to a random walk

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More from @tomcritchlow

3 Dec 20
Just a really great piece from @sariazout on the coming era of community knowledge networks: sariazout.substack.com/p/check-your-p…
What will this future look like?

Discord x Arena?
Slack x Roam?
Blogs x Wikis?
I think blogs may be a key missing ingredient - today there's still no good way to collaborate on the internet in public.

All the good collaboration is separated from publishing:
Google Docs

They're all great at collab but lacking in the power of publishing
Read 6 tweets
4 Aug 20
Some generalizations from my time indie consulting:

- most companies do way too little user research and know almost nothing about their users

- most companies have almost zero conception of what "brand" actually means

- most companies have too many KPIs and awful dashboards

- most companies talk a good game about innovation but have explicit structures in place to prevent rapid change

- most execs, despite being senior are starved for autonomy (vp layer gets hella crowded)

- most employees have zero clue what the companies strategy is

- most companies don't even have a strategy. They have a loose collection of plans.

- slack is great but most companies radically bias towards sync communications

- hiring is essential to biz success and often related to auto posting to job boards and hr folks
Read 7 tweets
24 May 20
Mulling on the concept of "long conferences" via @genmon interconnected.org/home/2020/05/2… and wondering about intersections with open/cross domain blogchains
Like - what if we all agreed to blog a topic together for a month? That feels.... flat. But maybe some nice naming and a nice website would help?
And - invite some submissions from outside the field - get the creative connections going.

And perhaps commit to some post-conference artifact (ebook? Newspaper?)
Read 5 tweets
5 May 20
Trying to write a blog post about the challenges of remote-consulting. It's been a real challenge for me - for a few specific reasons.
Firstly - the foundation of *strategic* work is doing work "in context". I talk about that in this piece: tomcritchlow.com/2019/04/04/the…
Every project sits within a nested set of ever-expanding contexts:
Read 9 tweets
10 Dec 19
Had a few Qs recently from folks on how to find clients as a freelancer or independent. Sure - the advice to "blog" or "start a newsletter" is technically good advice but it's not very helpful.

Here's a thread on some tips and advice that might help 👇
For context - everyone's experience is difference - but I'm an independent consultant and ~60% of my all time revenue comes from just four people....!

Not four *clients* but four individuals that I know - that refer the majority of my business.
(that screenshot is from my post Strange Attraction which is a lengthy version of this thread....

Read 17 tweets

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