We find opportunity when others don’t see it, or are too busy complaining about everything else.
I went to college to become a pharmacist.
Not the most glamorous job, but it definitely pays well, and provides “security”.
I didn’t choose pharmacy because I love pills, or because I love consulting on medication therapy, or because I wanted the money.
I pursued it because I couldn’t get out of the program.
Yep, I tried quitting “Pre-Pharmacy” undergrad nearly 8 times.
But no matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t switch programs.
Something always stopped me.
So, I was accepted into a pharmacy program.
For the next 4 years, I passionlessly went through the motions.
Studied, regurgitated answers, repeat.
The fourth year came quickly. And I didn’t know what I was doing.
I knew that I was good at teaching, so I pursued residency.
A residency for pharmacists (not medical students) is a concentrated year of training.
It’s a relatively randomized process and I was placed at a college.
Once I started, I quickly found poor leadership and lack of organization.
This institution, I later discovered, has a less than desirable reputation.
My heart sank after a discussion with my wife as to how this residency could affect the rest of my career.
During this time, I discovered the power of podcasts.
I recently wrote a post about the podcasts I listened to that changed my life.
These podcasts helped turn around my perspective and changed my “awful” job into great opportunities.
What follows are the lessons I learned from my Automobile University.
Search For Opportunities
You may not realize the bountiful chances that await you if you’re stuck in a rut.
Every business is looking to improve something.
Cost efficiency, timing, morale.
Areas of improvement are the areas where you can add value.
Listen to your manager’s problems.
What is she/he worried about?
How can you help with that?
Can you start a creative solution?
Here is a creative solution I did to boost student morale.
Make Great Connections Quickly
You could have an idea that will save your company $10,000 in a year.
But if you don’t have any relationships with coworkers, you will have no support.
Be friendly and genuinely interested in everyone at your company.
If you have no idea how to make friends (which I’m sure you do) I refer to Dale Carnegie’s way to make friends and influence people:
1. Become genuinely interested in others
3. Remember a person’s name is the most important sound to that person
4. Be a good listener
5. Talk in terms of the other person’s interest
6. Make the other person feel important
Volunteer for Everything
This was my pivotal moment.
By volunteering for the unwanted jobs, I was able to become a co-manager of a wellness program for an entire county (+900 people).
A golden egg dropped in my lap.
This opportunity became my shining moment.
When I interviewed for in December for other positions, this accomplishment came up every time.
Give More Than Expected
Jeff Goins recently inspired me to write down my worldview.
“Give more than expected”
When you begrudgingly perform your next duty, you’re likely giving less than 50% effort.
That means it’ll take you twice as long to achieve the same result.
From a manager’s point of view, who wants to hire that guy?
Give more than expected to impress not only your current boss, but your future boss for your next job.
Guide Someone Else
If it weren’t for podcasts, I may have wasted a whole year.
The hosts I listened to delivered amazing content that changed my life.
They guided me in my darkest hour.
They taught me the power of “pay it forward”.
Be gracious to others who hate their job.
They may not want to listen to your positive attitude, life-changing suggestions, and all around go-getter-ness.
Offer to help them along the way.
Get to know them, find out what their passions are.
Who knows, you may inspire the next Thomas Edison.