Someone once said to me that the 20s are a time for proving yourself. The problem is, there are so many different hats you can wear in this decade, and deciding which role is most important during this time can be quite an overwhelming undertaking. We all have those doubtful days of hoping whether we took the right path for our career, but how do we know if it’s actually the best for us?
Here’s a grain of wisdom we can learn from Jack Ma, founder and executive chairman of giant e-commerce firm, Alibaba Group:
“Before you turn 30 years old, follow somebody. Go to a small company. Normally, in a big company, it is good to learn processing; you are part of a big machine. But when you go to a small company, you learn the passion, you learn the dreams. You learn to do a lot of things at one time. So before 30 years old, it’s not which company you go to, it’s which boss you follow. A good boss teaches you differently.”
Learn from a leader that has the vision, the foresight and the drive to success. Don’t stay still and be stuck in a company doing repetitive things that won’t push you to your limits. Go to a small company, or perhaps a startup, work on more than one thing, work for a big mission – rather than solely for money.
Well, what if the startup that I’m working for, fails? According to Jack Ma, “giving up is the greatest failure.” If you go out, try your best and fail to achieve your goal, but see it through to the end you are a success. Like all great leaders, Ma recognizes that a person is able to learn the most from obstacles and hardships. Even if it fails, chances are more doors will be opened for you. It’s all about experience. Life is short, make enough mistakes and enjoy the ride!
“This is my advice to the young people: 25 years old, make enough mistakes. Don’t worry! You fall, you stand up, you fall…enjoy it! You’re 25 years old, enjoy the show!” – Jack Ma