I know a lot of people who have no idea what they want to do as career. Most of these people are smart, gifted individuals. In fact, they’re gifted in so many areas they can’t decide which one to pick.
I think this generation being raised now will have a larger breadth of knowledge than any generation that came before us. It’s kind of cool – I know people who know how to plumb, do video editing, play a musical instrument quite well and are really good with math… and english, and history, and sciences… you get the idea. I think one of the biggest struggles that people have is picking a specialty. We’re told all though school to keep our options open and try things so we can figure out what we like, but by the time that one actually has to pick something, they’re are so many options they simply cannot widdle it down to one thing that they like and want to do for the rest of their life.
In today’s day and age, if you want to excel in any field you have to be a specialist. That means saying no more than saying yes probably. It’s something I’ve been learning at work lately – we’ve been having really good discussions around the staff table about our roles and responsibilities and figuring out how to get us all doing more things that ‘fill our tank’ – things that we’re good at and we will excel in. I’ve found myself doing a lot of tech with my job, and I quite enjoy doing some tech, but too much of it will make me crazy. The probably is that I’m good at it… or at least competent, so much of it lands on my lap.
I’m finding that I’m doing most things well, but nothing exceptionally well. (Good is the enemy of Great, as Jim Collins would say) I think I’m going to need to learn how to specialize, which means saying no to some things which I can do well, but won’t excell in. That’s hard, but I think it’s something I’m going to have to do.