Tag Archives: career

Friday was my last day at Amazon

The goodbye mail to the Alexa Smart Home team explains it all pretty well: Date: Apr 27, 2018 3:03 PM Subject: Smart Home Org Update Team, With mixed emotions I share the news that Charlie Kindel has decided to leave Amazon. Charlie has accomplished many things in his time here, not the least of which is the founding and scaling of Alexa Smart Home. Alexa would not be the leader in Smart Home that it …Continue reading

Merit Badges – A Mental Model for Success

A long-time mentor of mine, Chris Phillips, taught me the Merit Badge mental model. This mental model has given me clarity and peace of mind over the years when navigating big career decisions. What’s the Merit Badge mental model for measuring success? The concept of a Merit Badge comes from the Boy Scouts. The idea being a scout can only earn a particular merit badge (actually a patch that gets sewn onto a vest) by …Continue reading

Find Work That Does Not Feel Like Work

The first thing I ask people who are looking for a new job is “What work do you want to do in your ideal job?” It is interesting how few people answer this question. Almost everybody wants to answer different questions like “What do you want to work on?” or “What kind of work environment are you looking for?” They respond with answers like “I want to work on a small dynamic team with other …Continue reading

You are Thinking of Your Career Trajectory Wrong

Most people think about their career trajectory as being like a bell-curve or that of a cannon ball fired from a cannon. Something like this: For 99% of all successful people, this is completely the wrong way to think about it. For that other 1% (the Bill Gates & Mark Zuckerbergs of the world) it might work. For the rest of us, there’s a mental model that will help keep you sane, help you appreciate …Continue reading