I've posted very little, lately, but this article shook me out of my torpor. Surprisingly, it does not deal with law.
The article, How Much You Study In College Determines What You'll Get Paid For The Rest Of Your Life, cites a 2008 study alleging a strong correlation between studying time and future earnings. It ends with the advice, "It's proof that hard work, not IQ, is what really makes people successful." When you stop laughing, read on.
Speaking as someone who spent every spring break in the library, so as to knock off papers and free time for exams, I call BS. I also learned first-hand about group dynamics: In an eight-member group, three people will do all the work.
After graduating magna cum laude, including good grades in my major, business administration, I then scrambled for permanent, full-time work, finally finding some in July. Following a couple of shit jobs — if you ever work for a small company and see fifteen different initials in the files, it's a shit job — I departed for law school. My college GPA helped smooth the way. College so soured me on the payback for hard work that I didn't focus on my law school grades. Guess how that turned out?
Back in the mid-1990s, I briefly had a small web site for which I wrote an essay called Don't Work for Clowns. It's printed out somewhere and I'll post it when I find it. In the interim, here's some advice that is worth every penny you've paid for it.
- Don't work for clowns
- Work smart, not hard. Learned this from my high school gym teacher, who was otherwise an asshole, and, in retrospect, it's the best advice I've ever gotten. A memorable ad (WSJ?) expressed it more eloquently: "If you keep your nose to the grindstone, all you'll get is a flat nose"
- Who you know is more important than what you know. A corollary for you corporate types is that who you drink with, matters
- Network. This doesn't mean cold-calling alumni, though you can try that. It means getting involved and making contacts. In short, you should be constantly, unintentionally networking. It's essential to business and influence but doesn't come naturally to most people
- Have wealthy, well-connected parents. You don't? Me, neither. Sucks to be us
- Your reward for doing good work is more work
- Again, for you corporate types, I was once given the advice to be nice to everyone because you never know who your next boss will be. This came to pass one day, fortunately, with me becoming the boss
I'm writing this from work on a Sunday. FML.