I love this article – https://www.inc.com/jessica-stillman/new-harvard-research-to-be-successful-chase-your-purpose-not-your-passion.html – because it concludes through research that Purpose beats Passion in the pursuit of happiness in your career. The subtle but powerful additive of the why is that Purpose brings resilience. Resilience will get you through the hurdles and challenges career building will most definitely bring.
One thing the article doesn’t mention about career choices is the importance of the quality of the business you choose. I had the opportunity to be part of a panel on career building with a team of student athletes. This very topic came up during our discussions, and I thought it worthy of mention. While it is more of a business model filter than an emotional one, like passion versus purpose, it is often not thought of by people when choosing an industry to start a business, or joining an existing company – and yet a very important consideration.
One of my closest friends is a very successful entrepreneur and investor who sat on the panel with me. When a college student athlete stated: “I want to start a business I have a “passion” for…” my friend responded “this is exactly what you DON’T want to do.” His point was – first make sure the business you start or join has characteristics of a solid business model like low capital expenses, high cash flows, and repetitive income versus a business you have a passion for that sucks cash flows and has low margins.
My advice to my kids will be: start or find a business with great business model characteristics AND find one you care about where the services and products it delivers to its customers has meaning – has a Purpose you care about and align with.
Our Big Purpose at Smith Brothers is to Help Others. The very products and services we deliver to clients helps them plan for risk and indemnify them at a time of need. Everything we do at Smith Brothers with all our stakeholders is “how can we help.”