Oct. 3, 2022

Graduate Theory Compilation - Part Two

Graduate Theory Compilation - Part Two

This episode is a compilation of episodes 1-25 of Graduate Theory.

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Content
00:00 Intro
01:16 26 - Abhi Maran
03:43 27 - Kerry Callenbach
05:54 29 - Lacey Filipich
13:36 30 - Yaniv Bernstein
16:25 31 - Gene Rice
20:00 34 - Robby Wade
22:02 35 - Cheran Ketheesuran
26:09 36 - Max Marchione
28:50 38 - Juliana Owen
31:41 39 - Elizabeth Knight
33:45 40 - Elaha Gurgani
35:33 41 - Gabriel Guedes
38:12 43 - Caleb Maru
39:21 44 - Lisa Leong
40:46 45 - Brendan Humphreys
42:42 46 - Mykel Dixon
48:05 47 - Dave Lourdes
53:53 Conclusion

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Transcript

Hello and welcome to episode 50 of Graduate Theory. What a fantastic milestone. 50 episodes. It's been a fantastic journey so far. Thanks so much for tuning in. So today's episode is part two of this mini series where we are recapping all the episodes that we've done. So just like last episode in this episode, we're looking at episodes 26 to 48 and in each of these episodes, I asked the guest, what is some advice you'd give yourself if you were, uh, finishing university and starting your career today? And this episode is a compilation of responses from right across these episodes. Some of the answers here are really incredible, and I, it's really cool to be able to compile these in such a nice way. I hope you guys do enjoy this one. If you want to see more, if you wanna, uh, get involved further, go and subscribe to the Graduate Theory Newsletter. First link in the description. You'll get an email update whenever, something happens. In fact, there's been some interesting developments in the last few days, so I encourage you to subscribe to the email list so you can hear it more about that. But without further ado, let's get started.

James:

I'd love to kind of wrap on a question that I ask all the guests and you can take this wherever you'd like, but something I asked the guests is kind of, if you had to wind back the clock to when you were just finishing uni and starting into, into the work world, what things you know now that you. You knew when you would, when you were at that stage.

Abhi:

Yeah. I think I'd probably experiment a lot more with what. For my career, like I think what I should have done back down is probably like talk to a lot of people in the ecosystem and figure out like ways to get involved. Even if it didn't seem like I'd be able to get involved from the outside, I should have sort of like been a bit more proactive, I think. And, and talk to people. Like, I think I was a little bit daunted by the fact that all of the people back then were just like really experienced people. And I was like, oh, who's going to talk. But I think they probably would have been nice enough to talk to me about that then. So like, I probably should have done that. I think I think there's a lot more opportunities for experimentation and, and I say this from like a privileged point of view as well. Like I think some uni students are really privileged in the fact that they still live at home. They don't have to pay rent, they don't have to pay for food, blah, blah, blah. And so for them, like they can. Be pretty like they can take more riskier options in the career so they can work at different startups for like two or three month periods, like intern at different places without really worrying about securing a grad job. But other people also are like, who aren't as, as lucky or in a privileged position. For them, what I think is really important is like to be able to sort of like secure a grad job initially. Secure the gradual and then use that to leverage other opportunities. And so like what I mean by that, and I think this is becoming a bit more accepted now actually, because companies are really desperate for good talent. And so you're able to sort of like negotiate with them, your start date. So like push, push your grad start date back like six months or a year or something like that. And in that time, go and experiment working for a startup or go and experiment with doing something that you've always wanted to do. If that's traveling. All over the world, like go and do that. If that sort of like starting your own business, like go and do that. And, and you've got a bit of security there in that grad job. And you can always like, bring that forward. I'm fairly certain, like if you just talk to people like they're, they're willing to help you help you out as much as possible. But I think, yeah, like talking to people, experimenting is probably like what I should have done a lot earlier in my career.

James:

one of the questions I ask all the guests that I have on the show is, and maybe you can take this in a, in a different direction, given, given your experience with lots of graduates. But the question I ask is, you know, if you had to restart. And then one, the quote, back to when you were first starting out, what kind of things would you do differently? Or what things would you tell yourself if you were in that environment? Again?

Kerry:

Yeah. Oh, I so know this. Um, and I noticed because there's a career change in myself multiple times. It can feel really, really overwhelming when you start something. Right. Um, our education system is designed to go. You go to. Primary school, high school, university job. Right. And so if you don't follow that pathway, you go, I must've done something wrong or I haven't succeeded as, as, as to the point that I should have. Right. And I had that myself, you know, I finished my sport and then we need to nursing and realized that I didn't actually want to do nursing. So what do I do? And you, you can kind of have a little bit of an identity crisis around that. My advice would be, it is okay to not know what you want to do. It is totally okay. Your life is not over your life is just beginning, right? It's you're just at a fork in the road where you need to choose. So I would say be okay if you don't know, and also if you'd go into a role or a company and it doesn't feel right, right. You're not being your best self. I'd stay, honestly, don't stay. Um, if you were giving up eight, nine, sometimes 10 hours of your life to a company, right? Um, you want to enjoy being there. You want to actually go, Hey, I'm really excited to get up to work today. I'm excited to, you know, go hang out with my colleagues. And if you don't feel like that, just take a moment to pause and say, why not? Where am I not feeling fulfilled? Right. Can, is there something about the role? Is there something about the way that their culture is with WorkKeys? Um, and if you don't like it don't stay, um, it's too many hours of your life to spend somewhere where you're not getting fulfilled.

James:

I've got one more question for you too, that I see. And that's around, you know, obviously graduate theory, Korea kind of focused podcasts. And I want to ask yourself, you know, have there been times, or like if you had to restart your career kind of wind back to when you were first starting out working, is there anything looking back now that you would approach kind of your career progression and perhaps your finances as well? Is there anything that you would do differently knowing what.

Lacey:

Oh, well, there's one tiny thing in my finances that I didn't understand when I was a graduate. Um, but I, I know now that I go like, oh shoot, I should have done something about that. Um, when I was working for Western mining, BHB took us over. That was in my second year as a graduate. And we had been given options. We Western mining and I didn't understand what options meant. And so I didn't exercise them. Um, and now I know what options they I'm like. Ah, I was like that eight grand I could have had. Um, so when something happens financially at work where they have like a share plan or they talk about salary sacrificing or your superannuation matching and stuff like that, if you don't understand, take the time to get the support so you can make a good day. It's really important that if you, if you get an offer for something from work that you understand, whether it's the right thing for you or not, and that you take the opportunities that you can cause often things like those share plans and those options plans are designed to keep you with the company, but they are a leg up. They want, they are an advantage, but if you just sign without understanding them or ignore them because they're too hard, you can give up a lot. Take the time to learn would be by advice there. Um, the other thing I would encourage people to do, which I hadn't even at the time thought about. You can tell from my discussion that I'm quite a forthright person and I will fight for what's right for me. And something that happened to me when I was in that second year, I was a graduate, I was one of seven graduates and two of us were female. Now, the five women. And we were at a site where there was 10 women in total, out of 300 employees in Calgary, in Western Australia. Right. So that was the reality of going into mining in a remote location back then. It's very different. Now, you know, the next site I went to was 20% female versus, you know, 10 out of 300. So, um, that's not normal, but what often happens when you're the only woman on a site or one of the few is that you get the women's jobs, uh, which w for this particular case was my general manager had lost in the 18 months. I'd been there. He'd lost five executive assistants. That's not normal. Clearly, clearly that was a difficult role, but they couldn't find someone and they really needed someone. So they asked me to fill in and I had a massive tantrum, like not a, you know, throwing my fist, but I went into my boss's office and was like, you're just asking me to do this because I'm a woman and I'm not happy about that. There are five other graduates who are male. Any of them could do that role. Why did you pick me? Because I had a real bee in my bonnet about this. Like we always give the women the job of taking the notes and they always have to get the frigging tea and all that stuff. Anyway, it was a real thing that I had heard so much about, and I was really sensitive to it. And so I overreacted, but I was really like, it was a fair call. My boss said that is a fair call for you to say that, because this does happen. And he said, look, I promise you, Lacey, that's not the reason you were chosen for this. Can you just take my word from it? That you're going to learn something really important and. It's why you want to take this role. And I was like, okay, fine. I really liked the boss who was fantastic. Um, JP and I said, all right, fine, I'll do it. But I'm not happy that you've picked me because I'm a girl. And he's like, I'm not picking you because your girl stuff. Okay. I find fun. Anyway. So turns out it was when BHP was looking to buy Western mining. And I got to be part of the war room that got set up before the merger and acquisition. So I got to be in on the discussions with the executive team and hear how they would pitch the company, how they would persuade another company to buy them. I got to learn about M and a. Now letting that at 22. Is it unusual if you're not like in that kind of like for graduate engineer, who'd just come off the furnace in west west scruffy, you know, covered in dirt outfit to be in these meetings, listening to this because I could make grass because I could type. And they needed that to hear those conversations that were happening to understand how the Warren would get set up to learn. That was like some of the most invaluable experience I got in that graduate program. Like you couldn't, you couldn't have planned. So my boss had noted that I wanted to be a CEO. He had noted that. Cause I had told him he did. He's like, where do you want to go? Eventually I'm like, well, I'd like to be a CEO eventually. So I wouldn't do, you know, management stuff, but he was doing it so that I could get this amazing experience because I was the graduate who had said I'm interested in that stuff. So he was doing the right thing by me. The fact that I was female, neither here nor there, but if I hadn't listened to him and I'm just lucky that he didn't go, we'll find, I'll give it to someone else just as well. You know, someone else, I'm very lucky that he was understanding. And so my response, so that's the difference between having a good boss and a bad boss? Sorry, what did I learn out of that? Sometimes? You'll think it's because of some thing that it's not, you know, I, I had a bruise on my bottom, everything I looked at, I was like, they're asking me to do that. Cause I'm a girl on a freezing, uh, on principle because I'm a feminist and thou shalt not make me. Um, it's not always the same. It's just, That's your frame of reference. Okay. So you'd need to be willing to listen when people tell you that's wrong, sometimes you'll be right. Sometimes you won't be that's. I think the most important thing that the second thing that I learned out of this experience, that's something that's carried me through. My whole career is pick your boss wisely. There is no one who will have a bigger impact on how happy you are at work. Then your boss, the end, 80% of your satisfaction at work, I reckon comes from whether you have a good boss or an outside good boss. They have to have had not so good. Uh, to be able to understand what a good boss is, I think, and I've had only a couple in my time. I've been very lucky. I've had fantastic bosses, but I started to get very choosy very early on about who I'd worked for for that reason. I think there were times when I was younger, when I worked for, uh, I'm going to be blunt, a bad boss, he was shocking. Should not have been allowed to manage people, just cookie cutter for everything. Uh, no, no. Taking into account anyone's personal views, circumstances or preferences. Just know this is how we do it. You will do it this way. Or we never give people that, that high mark you only ever get, everybody gets an average like that. He was just, he should not be allowed to manage people. Um, recognizing that that's not, you necessarily, it's not your fault. I had a lot of, uh, that sort of like, cause when you knew him, what the workplace, you don't really understand whether, um, that's because you're not meeting expectations or whether you've just been lumped with a bad boss. it's a little bit of both. Um, so you've gotta be honest with yourself, but if you've got a bad boss, just accept that that's a bad boss and they're not right for you. Maybe they're good for other people, but not right for you and become choosy. So that's, I think something that I learned based on my youth experience going, I've gotta be really picky about who I work for and don't don't work for assholes. The end.

James:

I've got one last question for you. And then that's a question I ask all the guests on the show and it's, it's the question is this, if you had to rewind the clock back to when you were first starting work, uh, knowing what you know now, is there anything at any advice you'd give yourself or anything that you'd do differently in that.

Yaniv:

Yeah, I think I backed myself more and be more entrepreneurial. And, you know, I, I suspect there's a generational element to this. Uh, where you go from, you know, a couple of generations back where it was kind of a, you know, lifetime employment sort of thing. Uh, maybe two. To my generation where there's a lot more mobility in people's careers, but it's still tended to follow a, you know, part of full-time jobs, you know, from one to another, uh, to, I think now when, you know, I'm seeing a lot of the sorts of communities, like the one that you are you're serving, right. Where people are really trying to be. Architects of their own careers. So when I say entrepreneurial-ism sure some of, some of the time that means starting your own business, um, or at my main starting a side hustle or, or podcast or anything like that, um, and building a personal brand, uh, but it also means taking a more active control of your career and not being as passive and say, well, you know, I've got my job now. I need to work towards my next promotion or whatnot. It's, it's really a question of being. You know, the architect of your own career and understanding of course, that, uh, you know, the future is, is very difficult to predict, but to have a set of goals and principles that you proactively set and then try to design your career around that. I think I'm seeing a lot more of that with, you know, the current generation of graduates and, uh, early career folks. And, um, I'm really kind of in all of that and a bit envious of that. And I sort of think, you know, if. Been more intentional in, in designing my career, you know, where, where could I have gotten to, I could, I've gotten to where I have earlier. Uh, you know, so that's something that I feel that that's, the advice I would have to myself is, you know, be intentional in planning a career that the tools that are available these days are. Right. Um, just from, from things like this podcast to communities like, like early work, uh, through to just the vast amount of resources online, the ability to start side hustles fairly easily, um, the availability of capital for early stage startups, that there is a lot of stuff around now that didn't use to exist. Uh, you know, if I were around now, I would hope, uh, that I'd be able to make more use of that stuff and really be intentional and mindful and designing my career.

James:

a question that I ask all the guests that I have on this. Is if you could, uh, rewind the clock. If you could go back to the days where you just finished university and you were going out into the world, knowing what you know now and knowing that, you know, all the, all the advice that you've written, um, what are some things that you would do differently or what are some advice that you would give yourself if you were. Back in your shoes, uh, you know, in that situation,

Gene:

You know it, you know, it's, it's, it's funny, James, right? I think that, I don't know if I shared this with you, but you know, my career was very different. I started. Owning rock and roll clubs in New York. Right? I own two rock and roll clubs. It only booked original music and had bands like the Ramones and the stray cats and Joan Jett and Bo Diddley and Richie havens. I left that business because the first one was extremely successful. The second one was. And my wife would only marry me if I got out of that business. But then I went into corporate America and in corporate America, I was with a division of a fortune 100 firm and international fortune 100 from Alcatel, a French company. And in seven years I was promoted five times. I went from a sales rep to a sales manager, to a general manager, to a district manager. My last job was heading up all these coast operations with over a thousand people reporting to me. I left that job. And I was making a heck of a lot of money for one reason. And one reason only I was never home at night, I was traveling a great deal and we had a young family and I was looking to have some work-life balance. I went into executive search James because I'd use search firms myself. I knew I could bring some value to it, but I never knew what I would find. I did it because I could be home at night. Now they went on to be extremely successful, very fast. But what I'm going to tell you, audience, what I would do differently. I found purpose in executive search. So even though when my firm became one of the largest retained search firms in the world, I never stopped leading the searches because I got purpose. Talking to the executives, talking to the clients and putting a good match together. Half of the people that I would place any C-level jobs had to pick up their families from one city and move them to another city for the role. And I felt, and if I'm going to pick this person's family up and move them, I have to make sure that this is a good match. And I found purpose in that. I had passion. I was excited. I woke up in the morning and I couldn't wait to go to work and do what I did. Um, So if I had to go back, I think I would have tried to identify early on where that passion was and that purpose and met. Might've been a little bit more strategic and looking for it. I got very, very lucky and fortunate. So many other people do not. Now it went on. The other thing is, you know, this book that I wrote, every financial reward that comes to me is going to be donated directly to the charity. My wife and I started to play the scene, inspired gene foundation to help more kids pursue their passions. You know? So I'm a big believer. Pursue your passions find purpose in your life. If you, if you can find that and you can make a career, figuring out how to pursue those things, you're going to be healthier. You're going to be happier. You're going to smile more and that's the message I want to leave your already.

James:

So I've got one question. Um, Lyft flee. Uh, and that is a, it's a question. I ask all the guests that come on the show and it is, if you were looking at the Robbie, that's just finished university and he's about to sort of guide into the world and, and tackle his job, uh, you know, what advice would you give him sort of knowing what you know now and all the experiences that you've had.

Robby Wade:

So easy. I would just say rate and run every day. Like if you, if you read books every day and run every day, I guarantee you. Your life will change forever. Like if you just do those two things, even if you started like a kilometer and a page, um, there just those two things are so unique, uh, in their capacity. And I'll be very brief on this. Like rating allows you to get mentors and knowledge and understanding, and you sort of level up your education and whatever. Um, running is cool because running gets you outside. Getting outside every single day is really, really important. Yeah. Yes, Acadian rhythm and just your mental wellbeing. Uh, when you run and you run through space and your eyes move, it relaxes you and it makes you incredibly calm. Um, and then also, uh, when you do like cardiovascular exercise, uh, it can actually form like a, you get like neurogenesis in your hippocampus and allows you to have like a fluffy hippocampus, which increases and improves your memory. Um, so if you're running every day, your memory is going to be better. If your memory is better, you're going to be learning more. If you learning. Very likely you're going to be fit and educated. Like I, it's pretty hard to go. It's pretty hard for your life to go south. If you just focus on those two things, uh, I think everyone can give you all these like weird anecdotes and statements and, and all those kinds of things, but practically, like try to read and run at least once a day. And, uh, I, I, I think your life would just transform from there. You learn what you need to do next, just by doing those two.

James:

I've got one more question for you, Sean. And that is a question. I ask all the guests that come on the shot and it is if you could kind of let's let's even for yourself, go back to when you were first starting university and kind of add into this journey of discovering, um, you know, the different opportunities that are, that are awaiting you. And what advice would you give to someone that's perhaps, you know, now just starting out on their.

Cheran:

Yeah, totally. Um, I think I've seen a few things. Um, I've always had three things, um, have to keep it very structured as a future consultant. Um, I think the first one would be do things your own way. I've mentioned the phrase, hedonic treadmill a few times now, but it's very easy. And I know that I am a person who subjects this on others is you see the LinkedIn's the table and you say, oh, well, by doing this, you got to this. And by doing, they, he got to say, and, um, have a consciousness that there are a million ways to get to where you want to be and be driven enough that you pursue goals. And you know, if you are pursuing roles and titles and whatever it is, that's fine, but don't be so driven that you forget to SSA, smell the roses from the way. Um, and you forget about the race, why you've done that journey. And you know, I'm not ending up in banking, but I'm still glad I've spent one and a half years in banking because that's taught me a whole, um, skill set of things that if I was so focused on the outcome, I think that was a waste, which certainly isn't. So I'd say, firstly, do things your way. Second thing. Um, nobody cares. Um, and that sounds rather flippant. Um, that what I mean by that is genuinely, nobody cares about so many of the failures that we have on a daily basis. I remember, um, seeing this visual visualization once on. And if you imagine two concentric circles and you sort of have one circle and then you have a little small circle, um, in the middle of it, um, and that small circle is how much other people think about you and all the space around it is how much you think about other people thinking about you. Um, and that's just the reality yet. Literally nobody cares. Everyone has their own issues and problems to sort through. And it's very liberating once you realize that, because all of a sudden, you're just focused on your own happiness and your personal pursuit of your goals. Um, and that's all you need in life. I think life is already tough enough, um, without worrying about what other people think or, you know, what's going to be the impact of me not getting X or not being at this stage in life. Um, and especially when you surround yourself in a high academic shaving background of students and cohorts, as you know, the universities, you and I have been to, um, either it gets very easy to fall into that middle. And then the last thing I would say, um, is that life will generally be okay. Um, and I think this sort of links back to, you know, nobody cares, but, um, I've said this a lot too, you know, it's graduate season at the moment. A lot of students in the years below some students that I tutor at university has been really stressed and worried about, um, applications. And I think, remember that everybody's. Peaks at a certain period of time and that's not going to be 22 for everybody. And it'll be rather sad if you're picking a 22. So I think, just remember that the vast majority of your listeners and the people who are part of this community, um, have lived in a time, which has never been better than time before. Number one. Uh, and that second late, generally, everybody, if you work hard enough, if you don't that luck impact everything in your life, you will be okay. Um, and you will get to where you want to eventually, um, and that there's no rush in life in terms of reaching certain goals. I just, because it seems like the vast majority of people reach goals within a certain period of time doesn't mean that you have to be part of that as well, because there are countless numbers of people, you know, Reed Hoffman is a prime example, uh, period reached their peak successes and their Fest successes in their forties and fifties. So, um, That would be my three pieces of advice, do things here right away. Um, nobody cares and, uh, it'll all be okay, James. It'll all be okay.

James Fricker:

I've got like one last question for you and and, and that is like, so you're in university currently, let let's rewind, perhaps back to the start of uni and thinking about who max was at that stage, knowing what you know now and all the things that you've done, all the experiences that you've had. If you could go back to max, who's just starting out where he's just left school. Let's say, what, what advice would you give to.

Max Marchione:

Be more courageous, take more risks, break the rules, university equals internships. In other words, like you used the time to. Um, do internships and then like, again, be even more courageous. Um, so, so that's the advice I'd go back and give myself.

James Fricker:

Amazing. Yeah. The courage idea is, is really interesting one and certainly I think, uh, I can be better. I think many of us can be better at flying that one. Um,

Max Marchione:

man. I, I, I think, I, I think I'm still, like, I actually still think it's a weakness of mine. I still think I don't take enough risk. Um, I still think I can can up courage. Um, and it's iterative, right? Like the more, the more you put yourself out, the more courage, the more, the more things you do that are courageous. um, the more you build up build up like thick skin to it, no longer feels like being courageous just feels like the normal. Right. And that's why, again, going back, I love next chapter because being around people in there makes things that used to be courageous as normal. Right. Just continue to like raise the bar and what's what's normal. And that, uh, a as humans, I think winding up with that independence of thought. Um, our innate state is to copy others. If you put two babies in a room with a thousand toys, they will fight over one toy. So our innate state is to copy others. Given that piece of information, I want to be around others or in a community where if I copy others, they end up in a really, really damn good place. Um, so. I think that's true of courage as well. If you're around people who, who are off the bar on ambition and courage and proactivity, even starting a podcast, like what you are doing, right? Like a third of the community bloody on podcast or something like that, um, is courageous. It's like, it's a bold move. You put yourself out into the world. Um, so, so I'd say that as well, like, like as a closing piece of advice, B. Be really deliberate about like, trying to find people who lift you up and trying to be part of communities or collectives of people, um, that, that create a culture where exceptional is normal.

James:

I've got like one more question here for you, Juliana, and that is around, um, you know, a lot of the audience listing is kind of grads or early career people looking to sort of, you know, start their career and, and started off in the right manner. And I'd love to ask thinking about yourself and your journey. If you could kind of wind back the clock to when you first graduated union and. Went out into the world of work, knowing what you know now and, and all the things you teach, what would you go back? And, and is there any advice you'd give yourself? Um, if you were, if you were in that stage now,

Juliana:

Okay. If I'm in that stage now. So going back to my first point, look for someone that will guide you, that will give you a full picture, because it's so much easier when you know where you're going. And I'm saying this because I've gone through that process myself here in Australia, I've tried, um, you know, a couple of times to get into the market. Um, with the, the knowledge that I had back in the days, I was well, 23, 24 years old. Um, and, uh, I wasn't getting anywhere. Once I hired someone and I said, look, this is where I come from. This is the experience I have so far. This is where I wanna go. And this is what I would like to achieve. How can I prepare to actually face the challenge and actually getting there? Okay. So we are gonna have to work on CV cover later. LinkedIn, we're gonna have to work on a mock interview. What's your interview style interview is one of the crucial points here, right? Cause the majority of the people think, oh, do you have a questionnaire that I can have a look? Or do you have a video on YouTube? Look, not really because the worst thing you can do in an interview process is decorating answer and, uh, question and answer, question and answer. Cause when you are in an interview, obviously you will know more or less what they're gonna be asking you. But more than that, you need to build your thought process. You need to learn how to build your process because if the, the interviewer ask you something that is outside of your, uh, uh, preparation, let's say you are gonna go blind. You're gonna go. And then you just answer whatever. And after all the excitement, uh, you know, went down, you just go, mm, I shouldn't have answered that. Oh, I didn't prepare for that. Oh, the question that I decorated wasn't asked, so it is not about decorating it's about you learning, how to create credibility through, you know, your thought process. How do you build that thought process? How do you tell your story? Um, so that, that comes on the, the, the mentorship as well. Right? So if you know what you're doing. Good on you. Get yourself ready, go for it all the best luck. If you don't know, or if you in doubt, search for a professional search for someone that will, um, you know, clear the, the, the road for you so you can drive through and, uh, get to your final destination. Sounds easy. Doesn't it? Yeah.

James Fricker:

Someone that is, let's say they're finished high school and they're starting their journey, uh, out in the, in the big wide world. Uh, you know, thinking and reflecting on your own journey, kind of what advice would you give to someone that's going through that right now?

Elizabeth Knight:

The first thing that comes to mind is be emotional which is kind of strange. But when I was younger, I thought it was bad to be. Passionate in a way. I thought that, you know, uh, young people kind of get this bad rap of being like too angry and too fired up or, you know, all the opposite. They don't care enough. Like, uh, I think it's really important to not worry about perfection when you're young, because it's just impossible to achieve and just. Feel things and act like impulsively somewhat, and, um, really appreciate the good and the bad that comes with being a young person, um, that you have to, you have to go through all of that. Like it's all really positive thing. So that would be my first piece of advice. And, and secondly, to. Be be bold again, that idea of how far are you willing to go alone? You know, don't absolutely. Don't let anybody else define the path that's in front of you. If you don't want to. And you might, you know, have a family or, or parents and who want a certain thing for you and think that's what is best for you. And you might agree with some of those things. That's totally fine. But the key there is being able to ask yourself, you know, why am I doing this? Like what what's really driving. This goal, this step for me. Am I just going to university? Cuz I think I have to go to university or am I going because it's actually the, the most purposeful step for me. Um, so ask yourself why I'm really try and um, think about that when you're making choices and do your best to make those, um, decisions in alignment with like who you are, not, not the rest of the world around you, because honestly at the end of the day, who cares what they think you have to. You have to live with it. They, they don't

James Fricker:

Yeah,

Elizabeth Knight:

yep. That would be my.

James Fricker:

one more question for you. Laha and that is a question I ask all the guests on the show, and that is if you could think back to when you were finishing uni and perhaps in your last year of uni, kind of about to go out into the world and do these things where are trying to get a job at X plays, you know, knowing what you know now and all the things that you've done, what advice would you give yourself if you were at that stage

Elaha Gurgani:

Yeah, I would say be bold, um, take risk and don't be afraid of the unknown. I think for so long, um, growing up, even with the society that we are in, it tells you to take this linear, safe path. It kind of lay down this path of like, if you do X and Y, then you will get Z. Um, and that's how you'll be successful. Um, and for so long, like management consulting, or even like other roles that kind was kind of chasing those, the paths that were laid out to me, because I was kind of afraid of taking risk. I was afraid of the unknown paths. Um, cuz if you do take unknown paths. Let's say startup or entrepreneurship, like you don't know what lies ahead. In five, 10 years, it's kind of unknown and very risky. So if I were to look back and, uh, look at my younger self going through kind of graduate or university, I would say. Take risk and don't be afraid of the unknown cuz once you do explore the unknown paths where the path isn't laid out to you, but you enjoy it. You're curious about it. You will meet the most interesting people. You will be challenged and grow so much. And the things that you always wanted, the um, the, the people, the tribe, the passion, um, the things that you always create for it will come to you through those unknown paths. That's where the magic lies. That's where the growth. So that's what I would tell my younger self.

James:

if you could sort of go back to, to, Gigi's probably in his last year of uni, he's about to go out into the world. Uh, now that you've sort of experienced all this stuff, uh, what is some advice you'd go back and give yourself if you were in that situation again

Gabriel Guedes:

Uh, it's hard to say. And, and, and I, if I, if that was, uh, serious proposition, like, okay, you can go back in time and tell the young something. I would probably like actually. Would pass on the opportunity. And I say that because you run the risk of saying something that over the 10 years or 15 years, even when I was uni, uh, that gets misinterpreted. And, uh, perhaps you end up chasing this thing because oh, This future me came from from the future. just to tell me this one thing. So this one thing might be super important and you might really misinterpreted, um, whatever the advice is, right. I can say, oh, everything's gonna be alright. Don't don't worry for instance. Uh, and then perhaps. The young Gigi takes it too, literally. And, uh, doesn't do anything of his life and then change the course, uh, or you can say something like, like work harder or whatever it is, and then you just go to the wrong, to the wrong, uh, tangent as well. So it I'll probably just pass on the opportunity.

James:

Mm. Yeah. Yeah. no, fair enough. Yeah, you don't wanna, I, I feel like that's a, that's nice. Cause I guess it reflects like where you are now is, is, is going super well for you. And you're really enjoying like where your life is at at the moment. So, um, Important not to don't wanna mess that up by accident. Sure. well, yeah, if there's, what would some advice be that you'd give, like, just people generally, maybe it's university students in Australia that are kind of coming to the end and try to work out what they wanna do with their lives. Um, is there, is there any advice that you'd give those people?

Gabriel Guedes:

Uh, I'll probably say that your lives are not gonna be decided then, like, I think at the, at that stage, many people think I'm making this big life decisions now. Uh, but in the big scheme of things, that's a commitment, whatever you're doing, that's probably a couple years commitment if that amount much. And, uh, There's so much more in your life, in your career. So don't worry, uh, too much overthinking these kind of things. And, uh, there's always way to course correct later if you're not enjoying it.

composer-1660028817716:

I've got one last question for you, Caleb. Uh, and this is a question that I ask all the guests and it is if you were graduating or perhaps, uh, quitting university early again, uh, like this time, like, again again now, right? Uh, you know, what would, what advice would you give someone that's kind of at that stage in their life?

Caleb Maru:

yeah. Um, Hmm. Yeah. I think the main thing is just like, take it easy. You have so much time ahead of you. Like your twenties are like made, you're made to screw up. Like you're supposed to screw up as many times as you want in your twenties. And it's cool. Like, cuz you probably like, I don't know. I think here is like, there's, there's quite a lot of safety, right? Like if everything goes wrong, you can probably get a job somewhere or like you might have a support network to help you out. So don't worry too much if things don't go well in your twenties, like it's meant to be kind of shit. And also like really. Um, and I'm definitely experiencing that now where it's like, why don't I have my shit together in like some aspects of my life. I'm like, it's cool. It's cool. Um, so yeah, I think it's just like have fun, have as much fun as you can and, and just do things that you enjoy. Um, yeah. And just say yes to as much things as you can, that like are helpful for you.

James Fricker:

I've got one more question for you, Lisa. Uh, and that is around, um, you know, Careers and young people more generally is a question. I ask all the guests that come on the show. And that is if you could, like, if, if someone was kind of graduating university again, heading out into the world, uh, and you had the chance to give them some advice, knowing the things that you know now and the things that you've been through, what, what is some advice that you would give someone at that stage?

Lisa Leong:

Uh, never listen to someone who gives you advice without asking some questions. First is my piece of advice. Isn't that a head spin.

James Fricker:

Yeah. Yeah.

Lisa Leong:

Um, uh, the, the other one is, you know, don't put too much pressure on yourself. I think you find the right pathway, James, whatever road you take at the fork at that time. And I feel like, you know, there's a lot of pressure make the right decision. Like it kind of all comes out in the wash at the end of the day. And remember that if you make a misstep. So if you. Accept a position that you absolutely hate then tick well done. You've just learned something about what you don't want next time. right. So take the pressure off you're okay. Um, if every day is lab day, you are fine. Um, so that's one thing, um, as well.

James Fricker:

I've got one more question for you, Brendan. Uh, and that's the question I ask all the guests that come on the show, and that is, um, advice for young people that have just graduated university, perhaps young engineers. In this case, like what advice would you give someone that's fresh out of university and wants to become a great engineer?

Brendan Humphreys:

Uh, wow. Okay. Well look, I, I think it's, uh, it's definitely the case that you want to find, um, uh, mature engineering orgs to join, where you can learn from exceptional individuals. So you, you wanna find that the engineering cultures, uh, in, in the mature engineering teams, uh, where you've got these, um, uh, mentors, uh, informal or otherwise that can teach you, uh, the art of, of software engineering and you, you can, you can learn from so, and, you know, we certainly deliberately. Set out to create a culture like that at Canva. Um, but you know, like the, a lot of the big companies like Google, Amazon, uh, Microsoft, apple, they will all have that. And I think that's, you know, that's something to definitely aim for. I think that there is a, a risk for grads in, um, and I'm not saying it's, don't do it, but I think there's just some risks in, in maybe joining smaller outfits where, uh, you can very quickly be, uh, the most knowledgeable and experienced person in the room. And, and that can be dangerous if you, if you just fresh outta uni, you know, it can work. It's just a risk. Um, I, I personally think that it's better to join somewhere where you've got those mentors, uh, that, that help you see what great looks like and can help you get there.

James Fricker:

I've got, um, a last question for you, Michael. Uh, it's something that I ask all the guests and, you know, graduate theory. It's sort of, uh, yeah, we're about young people that are sort of perhaps surround my age early career, perhaps at university. I wonder if there's any advice that you would hand it to people that are at this stage, uh, kind of looking to grow their career and, and ideally be in the sort of 2% that. Still the creative genius. Uh, you know, when they're a bit older.

Mykel Dixon:

you? Can't. You've got. You can't let the world get to you. You are going to be met with, I hope it's changing. I really do. I think it is. I think it's changing, but probably still the next, maybe 10 years might be a bit bumpy. We're we're trying to figure it out. You are gonna have people that are mean you're gonna have people that talk about you behind your back. You're gonna have people that actively try to, you know, withhold information from you or stunt your career, or do all these kind of things. Don't let him stop here. You know, like you've got to, you've got to trust yourself, love yourself. You've got to accept that you came here for a reason and it's not better or smaller or grander or lesser than anyone. Else's. If you are here, you are meant to be here and you have a voice and you have something you're supposed to contribute to this planet. And that could be your neighbors. That could be your family. That could be, you know, the colleague customers. You could be there another Steve jobs, you could be another Barry who lives in the suburbs. Who's just a radical dude who says Gade to the posty every day. It doesn't matter. You're here for a reason and you just cannot let the world diminish you and make you feel less than. How, how much of a miracle you are? And this might sound like a little bit, you know, Tony Robbins, motivational speaky, but we need that right now. We've been told we're not enough. We've been told that we're not gonna make it, that we aren't, this, that we're not as good as them. That we're NA NA you open up Instagram. It's just, everyone's better than you skinnier than you got more money than you. Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. It's horrible.

James Fricker:

Hmm.

Mykel Dixon:

And it's all bullshit, cuz all those people are worried and terrified and you know, insecure and rah, rah, you've just like my advice would be find people that you can trust and rely on and just hold this little unit of, of kind of safety and sacredness where you value each other. You support one another, you remind each other. Hey, we're awesome. Because the next world, the world that you'll all be building is it's gonna be better. Than the one that I inherited. And the one I inherited was better than the one my parents did. And the one that they, you know, we, we're getting better. We're on this journey, but it's, it, it can knock you around, man. It can knock you round and it can, it it's, you know, whether people mean to, or not, whatever you. Everyone. That's listening to this right now. And you included, James are extraordinary. You've got just so many beautiful, astonishing things to give to this world. We don't even know what they are yet. That's the magic of it. It's like, wow, who knows what James is gonna do in five years time or 10 years or 20 years. But if you start to believe a little story in your head that maybe James doesn't have something special to give, then you are not gonna launch that next project. And then we don't get the benefit of that. And this is the same as true, which I try to tell as many people as possible when I'm doing a keynote or a session, a leadership program, et cetera, et cetera. Look, guys, I really encourage you to share generously, cuz I can talk at you for two hours, three weeks, nine months. I can blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. Hey, I hope that you get some value from that. Let's, let's hope that there's a little bit of insight in there, but the real value's gonna come from you all sharing your story, your experience, your perspective, how you see and perceive the world. You have no idea that the question you ask or the story you share, or the insight that you, you know, that came to you, that could be the thing that unlocks something for someone else. And the whole reason they came to this event or this keynote, or this program, or whatever was to hear you say that thing. Not to hear me. It's you. And so if you don't lean in, if you don't share, because you don't think, oh, I don't, oh my question's not good enough. Or, oh, I'm not as talented as the others. Or then you are robbing that person of having what they need. Do you know what I mean? Like you are, you are stopping them from getting the magic that they need to set their life on fire. We're all connected and it's so insidious. And it's so terrifying when we start to believe that we're not enough or that we don't have something amazing to contribute. And that amazing thing to contribute could literally be, Hey, I'm not sure I understand what's going on. You put your hand up and ask that question. Fantastic. There's probably 17 other people that are thinking that, but are too afraid to ask it and you've just go, oh God, thanks so much for asking that. That was awesome. Amazing. That's this is what we, we want a world like that and where we're just generous and we're in it together. And we are just, we're all being ourselves and sharing ourselves as much as possible and that, and that kind of place. That's the world I want to, I wanna live in and it's coming. So, so hang in there, team I'm with you. You know what I mean? We're in this together.

James Fricker:

the question for you is I ask all the guests that come in the show, this, and we've got graduate theory aimed at sort of uni students, early professionals. I wonder for yourself, um, looking back to who you were at in, in the early years of your career and, and, thinking what you were like at that stage, is there any advice that you would. The Dave Lords that, you know, that was sort of just starting out in his career or is there any advice you'd give young people sort of starting their career today?

Dave Lourdes:

Have you gotten time for another podcast? Cause mate, my whole, my whole career and life has been a whole, I was gonna say a movie, a series of mistakes. So I'll tell you some of the ones I look back on that I, I, I wish I changed. I'm only grappling because I have so many. So I'm thinking you shouldn't speak up or participate because you you're too young or don't know. Or it's not your area of expertise? Um, I think one of the most important things that, um, I wish I did earlier and more often was, um, scaling gratitude and empathy. I don't think you can ever say thank you enough. And also caring about people. I, I would say I was, I overly goal oriented when I started and, um, wanted to, um, you know, it was driven by ego to work on the big projects and, um, Feel good about myself. I work in these ridiculous hours, um, that was working hard, not smart, but having more of that empathy and understanding that everyone's different, um, being more grateful, um, having an unhealthy ego, um, sometimes asking, I, I wouldn't ask questions cuz I go, oh, well that make me look stupid. If we all did that, no one had asked any questions. Right. And, uh, so I think asking questions early on, um, a little one actually is, um, attend work events, like not attending work events. Um, I think is a cm, um, not attending work events. Um, a CLM is a career limiting move. Um, you've got, you are part of the team and. You know, it's no different to social events. Sometimes, you know, you can't be bothered or you're tired or whatever it may be. I think it's important to make the time to, to do that. Um, um, I would've focused earlier and faster now I'm a manic. I, I love building relationships with people. I'm obsessed in that. And, um, I did that in my career as well. Uh, but I would've started that earlier, building genuine relationships. And, um, I'm a big believer. And if you don't schedule something, it won't. So in this example, if you say I'm gonna read more, unless you do it at a certain time, I'm a big believer in it won't happen. Or if someone says I'm gonna exercise. Um, so I know for me, um, my exercise time Monday to Friday is 4:30 AM. And on Saturdays is six 30. Am I sleep in a little bit? And on Sunday I have rest. So actually scheduling stuff. I think one of the most powerful things you can say to people that I wouldn't say back then, that I wish I started saying earlier is I don't know. Um, instead of pretending I know or thinking, I know, and then having to go away and, um, research it or something like that. I think that's an important one. Um, expect to get stuck. Just expect that it's gonna happen. It's gonna happen, happens to all of us. It happens to us now. Um, I would've asked for, um, help earlier and faster. Uh, it's something that I definitely didn't do. Um, and also for is, uh, I'm gonna say don't take a local issue and globalize it. And what I mean by that is when you are being stuck is temporary. Uh, but it's a stain, it's not a tattoo. And, um, by the way, I wish I knew all this back then. Um, the other one that I learned actually from having a personal trainer, I don't know if you've ever had a personal trainer. Um, that's an industry you want to get into because a personal trainer, when you think you are dead, they go five more and you hate them and you swear under your breath, at least I do. And then you give them money and come back next week. Uh, but the train of mindset in my mind, They're always, they always say, come on. Just one more, just one more. And when I first got a personal trainer, I remember his name was Michael that really stuck with me a banging year. So whenever I think that I've reached my limit is just one more, just one more. And, um, yeah, that that's helped me a lot. And if I could only pick one thing, James, it would be, um, self-awareness is king. Um, I've already talked about emotional intelligence. And within that, they talk about four or five different markers of emotional intelligence. And for me, um, self awareness is the beast. That's the one, if you are, if you can master that, you, you, your master, your life, not knowing what excites you, knowing what deflates you. Knowing what throws you off track, knowing what gets you back on track, um, knowing how you respond when you are confronted, uh, and your confidence goes down. So self-awareness, uh, if I could only pick one out of all those, that was the one I wish I learned, uh, earlier for sure. And I wish I got a coach earlier, too. You better stop me. I'll bring more wishes up.

Thanks so much for listening to this episode of Graduate Theory. Like I said at the start, if you do wanna get involved further, go and subscribe to the Graduate Theory Newsletter where you get an email from me every single week with a new episode. Thanks again for sticking all the way through, and we'll see you again next week.