Roy Gilbert

LinkedIn Asked People to Give Advice to Their 20-Year-Old Self. The Same Lesson Came Up Again and Again

Thanks to the likes of Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerbeg, there is an idea out there that the young are more likely to build ground-breaking businesses. They are full of energy, untainted by cynicism, and generally unencumbered by responsibilities.

Research shows, however, that the average age of founders of successful tech startups is a relatively mature 47 years. A few decades of accumulated wisdom seems to count for quite a lot. Wouldn’t it be great if you could somehow combine both sets of advantages?

That’s what LinkedIn tried to do with a recent tweet (hat tip to Insider ). The social network asked its more than a million followers for the best advice they’d give their 20-year-old selves in order to inject a little of the experience of gray hairs into the Energizer Bunny like-stamina of workplace newbies. If you could give one piece of career advice to your 20-year old self, what would it be? — LinkedIn (@LinkedIn) July 12, 2021 The resulting thread was a goldmine of useful advice. Some of the tips were quirky and personal — get tested for ADHD earlier, beware “reply all,” eat less pizza. Others, like “believe in yourself!” and “don’t procrastinate,” were more inspirational than actionable. But among all this advice, one particular bit of wisdom kept coming up again and again. Action beats deliberation.

The first person to make this point was executive coach Tracy Wilk. “Careers are long,” he wrote. “There’s no need for a mad rush to find the […]

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