Nice story and good advice.
I want to respond to the “Hustle”, but I feel a little background is befitting before I get to that. So, if you would, hang in there with me while I share a bit of my personal background….
You see, I am Autistic, and due to a severe prolonged nperiod of Autistic Regression I became quickly unable to work. While, I did try my best to continue working, it became clear to me that the business would suffer if I continued to work in the diminished cognitive and neurological shape I was in, so I self-reassigned my position to one of my top employees to take over my position.
As communication is so very impotant when going through difficult times like this, I kept my boss and all other upper management leaders in the loop all along the way throughout my struggle. Ultimately, we both agreed that it was in my best medical interest and in their best business interest that I resign, which I did, but also with a very generous severance package from the company. That should do it for the background, and thanks for hanging in there with my lead-in…
Now, the reason for my lead-in is that “Hustling” is very similar to something I used to tell myself early on and all throughout my career, which was:
“Work smart, not hard”
And that’s exactly what I did. That mantra was my hustle.
To refer back to with a little more detail to my lead-in, my hustle took me far in my career – very far – all the way from the bottom to the top. I worked in the Information Technology field starting out as an entry level first-level help-desk operator, and finally ending my career as Chief Information Officer. In the Information Technology field, there is no title above CIO.
At this point, I think another add-on to my lead-in is apropos. You see, despite the fact that I never completed college, had no formal experience in IT before my first entry-level job, and was even able get promoted to positions that required formal college degrees ranging from a Bachelor’s Degree, to a Master’s Degree, all the way up to a Doctorate Degree as a prerequisite, I still made it to the top.
How did I do it? You guessed correctly – It was my hustle – It was that I worked smart, not hard.
In conclusion, what is interesting to note is that not once in my entire career did I persue promotions. They came to me. That I went as far as I did was a direct product of not just the fact that I had hustle, but rather that I was my hustle.
The following quote says it all:
“A true leader has the confidence to stand alone, the courage to make tough decisions, and the compassion to listen to the needs of others. He does not set out to be a leader, but becomes one by the equality of his actions and the integrity of his intent.” — Douglas MacArthur.
Artfully Autistic Advocate for Autism