Job search advice from Shaun White

OK, first I need to make a confession,  @shaunwhite did NOT actually give any job search advice on the @tferriss podcast but he DID talk about what has made him successful and guess what?  It CAN work for you too!

Visualize it

Just like how Shaun visualizes every part of his jump, trick, take-off and landing you need to visualize the different parts of your job search.  What will it be like when the company calls you (phone interview) to talk about the job?  How will it feel when you go to their office for the interview?

Think about:

  • How will it feel
  • What will you say
  • What will they say
  • How will you carry yourself
  • What will you bring

Pick a Battle

You need to have someone to beat.  Shaun talked about a sweet kid who rode for Birdhouse Skateboards who he wanted to destroy.  And this was before Shaun was ten years old!  Anyone want to guess who got that spot on the Birdhouse team?

I don’t know about you but when I have someone to beat I always drive harder.  Would the 1980 US Hockey Team have been as great without the Russians?  Nope.  Would Agassi or Sampras have been as good without each other to battle? Doubt it!  There is a reason that rivalries bring out the best in us.  We are made with the desire for a battle to fight.

It does not matter whether or not the other party knows about this battle but you need to pick a battle.  Who are you going to measure yourself against?  Now go get’m.

Do the Uncomfortable Until it is Comfortable

Shaun confessed that he did not like and was not good at snowboarding switch.  He always wanted to ride with his left foot down hill.  So Shaun committed himself to this challenge.  He rode the opposite way till he was comfortable doing it.

What are the things you need to do or could do in your job search that you find uncomfortable?  Networking? Calling to follow up?  Stop fretting about it and just do it already!

Failures are Opportunities

Shaun looks at his failures as opportunities.  He talks about how many times his new tricks would come from trying a trick and it failing.  You need to become a recycler and re-purposer when things go wrong.

When you don’t get an interview or don’t get the offer, what can you learn from it.  True, maybe it is that the company does not see all the potential that you see but maybe, just maybe you could have done something different.

You Need Someone to be Honest With You

Shaun says that EVERYONE needs at least one person in their life to be honest with them.  For Shaun it is his brother.  That person can push you when you need to be pushed and be there with you when you need support.  But YOU must give them permission to and allow them to be honest with you.

To me, what matters most is where their heart is.  Someone can be honest and even rebuke from a place of love (think Jesus) or from positioning themselves an an authority (think Trump.)

If you are like most people in the world then you lack a degree of self-awareness.  Some lack more than others but we all have a blind spot when it comes to self-awareness.  Because of that we need that person to be honest with us.  It can be everything from “this needs to be the last time you wear that” to “how many potential employers did you talk to this week?”  Being held to account is not always a bad thing.

You take a crash, you get back up and next time you succeed and that’s a great feeling.
Shaun White



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