No Fears, No Excuses by Larry Smith


Yesterday I finished No Fears, No Excuses: What You Need to Do to Have a Great Career by Professor Larry Smith. I can’t say I learnt new things but what I can say is that I should have read this book early in my career. 

Working hard is not enough in today’s ever-changing and highly competitive environment. You need to think smarter and strategically on a constant basis to stay ahead. Smith starts the book by talking about finding your passion.

  • Good work is no longer good enough
  • Safe jobs are a myth
    • Every passionate career needs a backup plan
    • The current market demands high skills, not passion
    • Develop great skill, then passion will follow
  • Logic and evidence will find you the work you love
    • Read, talk, think analytically
    • Passion or interest?
  • Common career mistakes
    • Are you running with the herd?
    • Do you have a plan?

Smith continues with how to create a career plan.

  • Determine the destination
  • Distinguish your priorities
  • Identify barriers to your goals
  • Find your edge
  • Sell yourself by selling your ideas
  • Define yourself with your words and actions

Smith finishes the book by reminding us to confront fears and excuses.

  • The universal excuse is luck
  • Great careers and loving families go hand in hand 
  • Be disciplined about time management
  • Seek work-life integration, not work-life balance
  • Money matters
  • Fear of wasted time, missed opportunities, unknowns, ambition, failure
  • Take action

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