March 21, 2022

#22 On Finding Your Mission with Josh Farr

Hello Graduates!

This is episode #22 of Graduate Theory. This is a powerful episode, one that I learned so much from, and one that I recommend everyone listens to.

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Josh Farr is the founder of Campus Consultancy. He has worked with more than 21,000+ leaders across schools, universities, non-profits and corporates. He gives more than 300 presentations per year, including a TedX talk and speaking at the Australasian Talent Conference Digital 2020.

πŸ‘‡ Episode Takeaways

Strengths have sweet spots

Too little kindness is good.

Too much kindness is not so good.

Where is the balance?

In the episode, Josh outlines the idea that strengths have sweets spots, and too much of something isn't as good as it seems.

Honesty is a strength. If you go to your local barista and criticize them for the cup of coffee, you're just a jerk, right? Like too much. Honesty is not a good thing. Honesty is a good thing too little is not a good thing. So I think strengths kind of have this sweet spot.

Just because something is a strength, does not mean you should dial your use of it up to 100.

Strengths have weaknesses too.

Most People Don't Like Their Jobs

When I heard this it took me a moment to take it in.

Many people across Australia do not love their jobs.

the Australian workforce data from Gallup says out of every five Ozzie workers, less than one of them under 40 loves. Like people need to know that if you look at, if you sit down with five of your buddies, statistically, four of them, and part of you, don't like what you do as I'm like that's depressing

If you don't like what you're doing, it's important to ask yourself why you feel that way.

Then, it's important to act on that feeling. Just like Josh, you can get out of your comfort zone and seek a calling outside yourself.

It’s not about "Me", it’s about "We"

Josh found great meaning in not just doing things for himself but doing things for the community.

what if every day I was helping lots of as many people as I can in a meaningful way, and just nudging people along on their journey, whether that's in leadership or career or handing out suppliers

This is a call for all of us. How can we go out into the world and make it even just slightly better for everyone?

How can you do that today?

And so my metric for a meaningful career said, can I do something that's just net positive, but who knows how much you can help people, but can I just do something that's net positive [...] and can I show up every day and try to help?

Life 5 Seasons at a Time

how can we think about life in a way that sets us up for success? Josh's tip is to think about life in terms of seasons.

Breaking up a 40-year career into 5 seasons makes it less daunting, and you're better able to prepare for the journey ahead.

So way to think about it is firstly, like what would I be really not, what do I want to be doing? But what would I be proud to have done in the next five years?

The next step, is how can we make this journey into one that we can't lose?

The solution? Think about what experiences or skills you'd like to have that would make it a win no matter what.

just in the next five years, who do I want to help? What could I learn about, like, what can I become a mini expert in, in five years? And then what skills or experience could I have? So I, this is a win for me, no matter what

The Reason for Careers

But the point of a career is to end unnecessary suffering. So if you're not sure what you want to do, try to end the unnecessary suffering. What does that mean? Find some suffering, find someone that's struggling, find something that shouldn't be suffering, like where we have a resourcefulness problem, not a resource problem.

The Power of Proximity

One of Josh's key learnings came when he was volunteering in Turkey. He saw real people facing real problems, and that changed his perspective.

His advice is to get out there and see problems first hand.  

Like for me, I needed that smack of like, Hey, there are real problems out here and you can do something about that. And it's not overly like palatable, but it was really practical. And that gap between what I thought I wanted and what I needed became really apparent.

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πŸ“ Show Timestamps

00:00 Josh Farr

00:56 Josh's Grad Program Experience

07:54 The Social Pressure of High Achievement

17:31 Leaving his Career as an Engineer

23:14 How Josh Found his Passion

30:10 Josh's Powerful Volunteering Experience

36:59 What is Josh Working on Today

42:18 What am I going to do with my life?

46:37 Josh's Advice for Graduates

51:08 Outro