My Biggest Real World Advice

I spent some time yesterday talking to our intern. It was a quiet afternoon and he had questions about life.  Here are the three things I told him:

  1. Pay attention in finance, economics, and accounting if you want to get an MBA.  I was an exceptionally good crammer before exams for these subjects.  When I was going through the MBA program, I had a rough time because I hadn't really learned the concepts.  I still don't think I could tell you how to do net present value calculations if my life depended on it!
  2. It really is who you know, not what you know.  Being an eternal optimist/people really care about my skills, I disagreed with this for a long time.  I've come to learn that while ability is key, knowing people makes a difference in many (or most) situations.
  3. Learn to say no.  I could write a book on the things I've needed to say no to.  I'm not very good at that easy two-letter word.  I sometimes think I can do everything, but I know that I can't.  You can't give everything your all.  Pick the things that are most important to you and put your time and talents to good use there. 
I hope you enjoyed today's life lesson!