Congratulations to the
finalists for the 2015 Glenn Shepard Leadership Award:
West Texas Food Bank
North Chicago, IL
University of Louisville
Bloomington Chamber of Commerce
Lighthouse Christian School
question that a college degree is a requirement for many jobs,
as is having a high grade point average (GPA).
But having a degree and a high GPA
are often more helpful in getting a job than they are in
succeeding at a job, even in positions that require advanced
For example, imagine
that you’re a brain surgeon.
hold a Bachelor of Science degree in biology from an Ivy League
college, where you graduated at the top of your class. You hold
a medical degree from another Ivy League college, where you also
graduated at the top of your class. You are officially a
Now imagine that
you’ve been working at the same hospital for 10 years. You’re
applying for the position of Chief of Neurosurgery, and the
hospital’s board of directors has narrowed its decision down to
you and one other surgeon.
other surgeon’s resume is nearly identical to yours, with one
small difference. She’s also been practicing surgery for 10
years, her track record in the operating room is the same as
yours, and she went to the same college and med school as you.
But she graduated sixth in her class as an undergraduate, and
eighth in her class at med school.
Think the board will choose you over her because you graduated
higher in your class? If you do, think again. They might have
chosen you over her if they were hiring you straight out of med
school, because your academic record was more significant at the
time. At that early stage in your career, it was the best
indicator of how well you were likely to perform in the real
But now that you have a 10
year track record at work, how well you performed as a student
is far less important than how well you performed as an employee
in the real world. Notice that I didn’t say, “How you performed
as a surgeon”. You now have a 10 year track record of how well
you performed as a surgeon inside the operating room, and as an
employee outside the operating room.
Even a perfect record in surgery won’t be enough to get you the
position of department head. What you did outside the operating
room for the last 10 years will now come into play.
If the other candidate showed up on time every day, while you
regularly called out sick and drug in late, your chances of
winning the position over her are about as good as your chances
of winning the lottery.
whether you’re a ditch digger or a brain surgeon, your work
habits will have a TREMENDOUS impact on your success, and your
To Your Success,
For proof of how a reputation for
being unreliable can derail your career, look at actress Lindsey
Lohan. As www.TheRichest.com
reported, she “Turns up to work whenever she wants”, which is
why “No one in Hollywood wants to touch (her) with a ten foot
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