Best job I ever had

Best job I ever had



If you watched the video, you’ll more than likely agree that these guys are being just a little bit cynical. Bear in mind that there are a lot people in this exact same predicament. (Although most will not find themselves under attack in a Sherman tank like these guys.)


The point is: A lot of people feel stuck and trapped in their jobs.


So, how the hell does one get out of these ruts then?


The answer: Design Your Life: How to build a well lived, joyful life, by Bill Burnett and Dave Evans.


The premise of the book basically involves taking a design driven approach to getting yourself "unstuck."


For all you makers/engineering/techie-geek-types, like me, Design Your Life employs traditional product design processes that we’ve known, and more than likely utilized in designing kick-ass products to solve real world problems.


The question is: can we use these same techniques to solve softer, personal problems, for example, like making a career move.


The answer my friend is a resounding “YES.”


The book in essence is grounded in a “think less approach” to doing things.


For example, and I have said this before, I am not against planning, but remember, plans never, and I repeat, ever, materialize as 100% expected. So employing a “bing-bang” approach in an attempt to accomplish an end result rarely ever works in real life.


Instead, as an engineer and entrepreneur, I don't necessarily “think” my way to the solution. But instead I like to build and "make" my way there. Whenever I’m faced with an obstacle, I prefer to use an iterative process, as provided by the authors in Design Your Life.


This process generally involves:


DISCOVERY: ideating and brainstorming potential solutions out on a whiteboard or wipebook, thus, expressing your ideas in a visual way. If you are looking for a career move, jot down some options based on things that you like to do for instance. For example, if you like skiing, hiking, and other similar outdoor-specific activities, maybe you need to look for a career that is less "cubicle."


PROTOTYPING: In a conventional sense prototyping involves building a minimal viable offering, cheaply, effectively, and quickly. So going back to the above example directed at a career change, this might mean doing some volunteer work and/or collaborating with people in the "non-cubical" space.


ITERATING: And finally you need some metric, or key performance indicator, KPI, to measure the failure or success of your prototyping experience(s). Hey, maybe the 18,000,000 black flies buzzing around your head during your park ranger volunteer weekend could be a game changer. Hence, maybe you’ll decide to X that one off your career change list and move on to the next brain-stormed option.


There you have it folks. Cool read. Cool book. With some practical advice and solutions for designing your life and getting yourself unstuck.