Mike Rowe: “Become indispensable”

Mike Rowe of Dirty Jobs fame was asked by a fan for career advice. His response is frank and direct and awesome. And he closes with timeless advice for anyone trying to find their way in the world of work:

“Stop looking for the “right” career, and start looking for a job. Any job. Forget about what you like. Focus on what’s available. Get yourself hired. Show up early. Stay late. Volunteer for the scut work. Become indispensable. You can always quit later, and be no worse off than you are today. But don’t waste another year looking for a career that doesn’t exist. And most of all, stop worrying about your happiness. Happiness does not come from a job. It comes from knowing what you truly value, and behaving in a way that’s consistent with those beliefs.” -Mike Rowe

This is consistent with the advice I shared for those facing life after college. You don’t have to figure out your career. Pick a job where you can get picked, and then go be awesome. If you don’t like it, try something else. But stick with something long enough to get good at it, and at least learn what it means to truly work.