Bringing back a recurring feature of the blog, today and tomorrow will feature an interview with Dr. Steven Lurie who heads Lurie Executive Development and is the author of a recently published book "Handbook for Early Career Success". You can find his full bio here.
What has fascinated me about Steve is his role as an organizational psychologist. Over time, he asked hundreds of executives across dozens of organizations not only about the lessons learned from their careers, but specifically, what qualities they see as most critical to early career success. He boiled these down to 8 factors or “Keys to Early Career Success” which he describes in great detail in his book. (You can even view a limited preview of the book here.)
A quick look at these success factors confirms what some of us know from our own experience – Technical-analytical excellence is necessary to getting in the door. But it is the quality of the connections you make with others that leads to being invited to play those higher impact managerial and leadership roles to which many of us aspire.
It’s easy to be jaded about the practical value of these “soft skill” books. Not because they don’t have lots to say, but getting the practical value that employees are looking for is almost impossible given how busy everyone is.
But what’s notable about this book is that it provides a relationship building roadmap with specific rules and tools you can apply to your day-to-day interactions in the workplace and it is written is a style that makes it easily accessible.
The interview with Steve was so enjoyable that I’ve broken up the interview in two parts:
So Steve, welcome to my blog and thanks for giving us some of your time.
My pleasure Dan, and thanks for having me.
Steve, when you think about the lessons learned and advice you heard across all of these interviews you conducted, was there a “headline message” to entry-level employees?
People who recognize that the path to success is very different in the workplace than in school or and adjust to that reality have a big advantage over people who have no clue about where they are and what is expected.