Ninety percent of college commencement speakers advise graduates to follow their passion. Are they right or wrong? This premise was questioned by Michael Smerconish on CNN this past week.
Smerconish asked NYU Professor Scott Galloway his opinion. Galloway, also a serial entrepreneur, said the best success strategy is to experience failure and to quickly get up and move on.
In my opinion, the best advice is to combine the two strategies. Do something you are excited by or somewhat passionate about, and take risks with the knowledge you may fail, but go for it anyway. Learn from your mistakes and give it a go again. The next time do it differently - whatever that happens to mean.
Following one's passion is a temporary thing for most of us...because as we experience more of life and learning, our passion often changes. My first passion (or so I thought) was advertising. That was the time of the book "The Hidden Persuaders". It was the "Mad Men" age. l It was glamorous, with martini lunches, and so forth. What college grad wouldn't be passionate about it? Today, it's probably technology, social media or the metaverse. Glamorous, right?
Passion early in a career is simply something that excites us at that moment...and in many cases after a few years a new passion arrives in one's life due to experience and success. We may have many passions in our lives, and many failures as well. So maybe following one's passion is good advice and so is recovering from failure. Anyone have more advice for college grads? Please do share it with me, firstname.lastname@example.org.
---Leslie Grossman, Founder, Her Circle Leadership