Tuesday, April 20, 2021

Beyond Television

One of the joys of being human is we are in it together. When you're mapping out a path, you can look at what other people are doing. This is where social capital kicks in. Being surrounded by people that you share enough in common with to believe their paths are paths open to you. You can see the skills that they need to do what they do. If you know them well enough, you can ask questions. Ideally, you want a holistic sense of the person. To know beyond the stories you attach to the job, or what you have seen on television. What is their actual day-to-day? In practical terms, what does the person do? Every week? On TV, you might see the exciting bits of law, with time-lapses of them spending all night for months in a room with a box of files. If you know someone, you see the journey, and the consequences of the job beyond the conspicuous. Subtle things like knowing their circle of friends and family. Their capacity for interests beyond work. Their health. Do they spend lots of time on spreadsheets? Do they write a lot? Do they read a lot? Are they mainly in meetings? What are their frustrations? How is their relationship with colleagues and bosses? What is the politics like? What are the barriers to entry and development?

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