John Cleese: Nobody knows what they are talking about


Having a rough time getting new ideas across? Or just got turned down for a job you really wanted? Well I know how it feels (I do). Working in recruitment we deal with rejection every day. Hearing “no” from clients or candidates is a fact of life.

Why am I telling you this? Well … especially in technology we’re used to things following a clear path. Sure in engineering we deal with Murphy’s law more than in any other profession. But in the end we still have a strong influence and control over the outcome.

Unfortunately winning a bid for a new project or getting accepted for a job is much more volatile. It isn’t like chess where the best strategist and mathematical mind takes all (more like backgammon where the roll of the dice can turn the tables even on a good player any moment).

Here is some great inspiration from John Cleese which I’d like to share with you:

About Cleese’s stance on creativity, leadership and management in the Harvard Business Review: http://hbr.org/2014/03/john-cleese/ar/1

But how do you get good at something like a job interview? Well how do you get good a programming or at calculus and algebra? With practice. You keep doing it. It’s the same with job interviews: Treat every rejection like a gift and opportunity to learn. And with “keep doing it” I don’t mean only until you have a job. Keep doing it even you already have a job. At least once a year exercise those synapses and then take a new position when you feel at your peak in your current job. That way you will be remembered as a top performer by your old boss and have the best foundation during the interview and negotiation phase.

Check out the “rejection therapy” game (great fun, especially when you play it together with friends).

Valbonne Consulting provides Research & Consulting for emerging technologies in Internet/Web of Things (WoT/IoT/M2M) and Emerging-Tech. We specialise in decentralisation, security and privacy. We work across a variety of traditional industry verticals (Telecommunications, Automotive, Energy, ...). We support Open Source and technologies built on open standards.

Joachim Bauernberger

Passionate about Open Source, GNU/Linux and Security since 1996. I write about future technology and how to make R&D faster. Expatriate, Entrepreneur, Adventurer and Foodie, currently living near Nice, France.

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