3 Tips for Planning Your Career from a Former Google Director

June 29, 2017

1:30 pm

At this point, Google has become the gold standard for business. Whether it’s their overarching success, their jealousy-inducing company culture, or their fun loving name, this search engine turned tech giant is the envy of every entrepreneur, startup founder, and tech employee around the world. And if you’re trying to map out your career, taking advice from someone that used to work there isn’t the worst thing you could do.

Fortunately, Mike Steib, the CEO of the XO Group and a former director at Google, is more than happy to dole out a little advice to guide you on your employment path. He told Business Insider that there are three important questions to ask when it comes to planning your career:

Are You Making an Impact?

If you don’t feel like you’re making a difference at your job, you’re not going to be happy for every long, if at all. Finding your purpose, regardless of the industry, is the key to making sure you are in the right career.

“It’s really important that you’re in a job that is helping you to have an impact,” said Steib. “So if you work someplace, you’re not motivated by what you’re helping to build, or what you’re contributing to it, you should be working somewhere else.”

Are You Learning Anything?

When planning a career path, you need to always be developing your skill set and growing as a person. Even a terrible job that teaches you something can be rationalized into being a good decision for the future. But if you aren’t learning, you’re wasting your time.

“There was no substitute in my personal career for becoming an expert in how technology companies are run,” said Steib. “You want to work in a place that will give you high leverage on the things you need to learn, and the experiences and skills you need to develop in your career.”

Do You Hate Your Boss?

As the number one reason employees leave a company, this one is more important than anything when it comes to your career path. You could be learning more than ever before and contributing to a cause you believe in. But if you’re motivationally brutalized and personally criticized on a daily basis without an inch of appreciation, it’s going to be hard to stick around.

“Whenever someone asks me how to fix a broken situation with a bad manager, my advice is always the same,” said Steib. “The only way to fix having a bad manager is to find a new manager.”

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Conor is a writer, comedian and world-renowned sweetheart. As the Assistant Editor and Writer at Tech.Co, he’s written about everything from Kickstarter campaigns and budding startups to tech titans and innovative technologies. His background in stand-up comedy made him the perfect person to host Startup Night at SXSW and the Funding Q&A at Innovate! and Celebrate, posing questions to notable tech minds from around the world. In his spare time, he thinks about how to properly pronounce the word "colloquially." Conor is the Assistant Editor and Writer at Tech.Co. You can email him at conor@tech.co.

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