advised hiring managers to pay attention to the candidate’s approach to professional development, to look for candidates who identify with the profession outside the nine-to-five day.
Read the post to get a full picture.
This creates an interesting conundrum. I believe in being passionate about what you do, and think that there’s more than just a little truth to this quote:
You know who you are. It comes down to a simple gut check: You either love what you do or you don’t. Period.
– P. Bronson
But I don’t believe that tech comm (or any other career) should take up your entire life or subsume your identity. You can read more about my thoughts on this here.
In this space and elsewhere, Aaron and I tell people to take what they do seriously but not to take themselves seriously. Living, eating, breathing, dreaming, thinking, and whatever else technical communications (or any other job) is … well, it’s not a good thing. It makes someone very one dimensional, and I’m not sure I’d want to work with or hire someone like that.
I’ve worked with a few people who wrapped their identity in their careers, and they really had nothing else outside of that. No real life, few (if any) close relationships, and a lack of personality in some cases. In order to be effective at what you do, you need to step back from what you’re doing for a living. You need to take a break, and let the part of your mind that deals with your career go fallow. Even for a few hours.
And I hate to imagine what happens to those types of people when their careers don’t work out. Or, if during tough times, they lose their jobs and can’t get another one. A mind and a personal life are truly terrible things to waste.
Thoughts? Feel free to leave a comment.