50 Invaluable Things I’ve Learnt As A Corporate Employee

by Karl Rohde — Get free updates of new posts here. Photo Credit: Karl Rohde

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  1. Growth is a choice. There is so much you can learn if you have an ongoing student mindset. (click to tweet)
  2. A corporate business will teach you the fundamentals of business: TO CREATE A CUSTOMER.
  3. You won’t clique with everyone but a few close people make it extremely worthwhile. Some people are a catalyst to being a better you. Be SUPER LOYAL to those.
  4. It’s taught me how to teach myself - free-style.  Corporations invest heavily in their staff. With little effort you can get education you could barely afford to pay for yourself.
  5. You’ll learn how to dominate in a business sector. If a corporate business has been around for decades there is a reason for this. Figure it out.
  6. I’ve learnt that strategy and continual improvement go hand in hand and that it’s just as applicable to personal development.
  7. Communication is critical. This is a mandatory art. You’ll get nowhere if you can’t talk appropriately with relevance to your audience. (click to tweet)
  8. I’ve learnt that while strategic planning is crucial to long term success it’s just as crucial to break strategy when unexpected change comes to town. There is a time for reaction, but keep it to a minimum.
  9. It’s taught me the fleeting nature of customers. Easy to lose and hard to get back, but you can get them back.
  10. I’ve learnt how business can be harsh – only the best survive.
  11. I’ve learnt when to let an investment go and when to go in for the kill.
  12. It’s taught me to continually reinvent myself just like a business needs to - to remain viable.
  13. It’s taught me how to eat humble pie especially when managing people.
  14. Managing people is like herding cats – get to know your people as individuals.
  15. It’s taught me that leadership starts with being able to lead oneself.
  16. I’ve learnt that creativity is not always welcome and subsequently that it’s always possible to be positively creative with a close-knit crew of progressive renegades.
  17. The only sustainable competitive advantage is people.
  18. There are benefits to having a bad boss. Understand this as there are plenty of bad bosses. (click to tweet)
  19. Relationships at work are everything. You can’t thrive in a vacuum.
  20. Brilliant people are best managed by leaving them alone, well mostly. (click to tweet)
  21. There is a time for reckless creative expression and a time for being boring, structured and controlled.
  22. You can achieve amazing things with someone else’s budget.
  23. You can be outrageous, but you have to choose your audience.
  24. There is a dark side when it comes to politics and mankind’s obsession with power.
  25. It’s taught me to be resilient and self-effacing while being impervious to ill motives and foul play.
  26. Business is not always pretty and that should not prevent one from being brilliant.
  27. A legacy at work is possible when you do the opposite of everyone else and focus on touching people’s lives. You won’t be remembered for working 80-hour weeks. (click to tweet)
  28. There is a place for process based rigor and that big things are possible when you work within a framework – think Six Sigma.
  29. It’s taught me to wise up and not let an organisation stop one from being more brilliant than the organisation would like.
  30. Tracking small improvements are crucial to personal marketing. All the small things that you do are easily overlooked. It’s your responsibility to track and report them.
  31. I’ve learnt to make something out of nothing - to take an idea and end up with a product.
  32. Understanding your values is a sure fire way to doing work you love.
  33. True passion is rare. Being passionate can be a lonely path.
  34. It can appear that the status quo is more important than change; this can be demoralising.
  35. Excessive cynicism gets in the way of opportunity and creativity.
  36. When pitching a new idea be prepared to pitch it more than once. (click to tweet)
  37. Beware: The safety of a routine pay check can stop you being the best you can be.
  38. ROI is the objective of business. You need to understand this.
  39. Building trust takes time and it’s the most important thing you can develop.
  40. Being your authentic self at work requires bravery. Without this your best work will struggle to make the light of day.
  41. You’ll do phenomenal work when your work embodies an entrepreneurial spirit.
  42. As much as it depends upon you be the bearer of good news. 
  43. Make your boss look good. This is a fundamental law of politics at work.
  44. Aim to be a person of value rather than a man of success – Albert Einstein.
  45. Accomplishments are everything. Always focus on TANGIBLE OUTCOMES. Your value hinges on you being able to convert time into tangible outcomes. (click to tweet)
  46. Despite their success corporations have a lot of faults; focusing too deeply on this is not the best use of your time.
  47. The best use of your time is to develop solutions, market them and speak publicly – in that order. This will hone your business nous.
  48. Your way is not always the best way. Accept the ideas of others gracefully.
  49. Having a personal brand is a supreme differentiator and it takes time.
  50. Discovering and utlising your UVP (unique value proposition) is an imperative.

What are your thoughts on lessons at work? I’d love to know. If you liked this article please please share. This helps a lot. 

I'm a big fan of connecting. If you have any questions, comments, or just want to chat - feel free to drop me an email at karl [at] worklikeanartist.com or on Twitter at @krohde