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Old 11-23-2011, 06:26 PM
 
421 posts, read 2,528,688 times
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You actually want to know how to get ahead? Listen carefully! I went to dental school and graduated in 2006 from Temple University in Philly. Did a one year residency and then headed back upstate. Worked at a low-income dental clinic that serves only the poor, working poor and others on welfare. Because I worked in that type of environment the state of Pennsylvania helped pay back a good portion of my loan. Because the clinics I've worked at fell into a health shortage area I qualified for loan reimbursement. That's how you get ahead! Amazing how many of my friends wanted to rush right out and start making the big bucks, interesting how some of them contacted me a year or two later and asked me about my program. Same with medical doctors, they have the same types of programs in all states. Remember the show "Northern Exposure" with Rob Marrow? Well if you do, you'll remember why he was sent to Alaska, it's because the government paid for his education and he had to give them back a certain amount of years. Believe it or not that's one of the biggest ways to get ahead, have someone else pay for the education if you can. Can't tell you how many years I've shaved off my student loans because of doing it this way. Hope this helps.
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Old 11-24-2011, 07:26 AM
 
Location: New York City
4,035 posts, read 10,258,273 times
Reputation: 3753
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoCUBS1 View Post
That is true... You should be passionate and optimistic about the job you're doing as that is the type of person people want to be around. And if you are not passionate about a job, at least learn how to fake it until you find a better fit.
I would argue that you can't fake passion and engagement, at least not for 40 years.
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Old 11-24-2011, 06:11 PM
 
Location: Chicagoland
5,749 posts, read 10,333,259 times
Reputation: 7010
Quote:
Originally Posted by tpk-nyc View Post
I would argue that you can't fake passion and engagement, at least not for 40 years.
Of course not, that would be miserable.... That's why I said "until you find a better fit." There can be elements of entry level jobs that are pretty boring and you sometimes need to fake enthusiasm while you're working your way up from the mailroom to the board room. Plenty of successful executives started in lowly positions but were able to project the right attitude that made them a stand out for promotion. Believe me, I'm not always passionate about every aspect of my job. But I always project optimism and enthusiam for my employees and customers no matter whatever internal doubts I may have or how much I may dislike a project.
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Old 11-25-2011, 11:00 AM
 
14,249 posts, read 17,851,979 times
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I spent 30 years working in a Big 4 public accounting environment so, from that point of view, here is my 10c worth.

First .... your educational attainments merely get you a ticket to the dance. They get you into the corporation but, once in, they are generally pretty worthless. It is what you do at work that matters then.

Second .... you need to be good technically. In other words, you have to be excellent at the job you have been hired to do. That, alone will not get you ahead but not being good at it will get you marked down.

Third .... you need to be good with people. You need to be personable, popular and articulate. You need to be able to manage down ... and up. In other words, learn to manage your bosses. Corporations are social entities as well as being commercial entities. Learn the culture, play the game and network with a vengeance.

Fourth .... you need a good business head on you. In some corporations that means being able to sell while in others it means a very strong awareness of what makes the corporation successful. Understand the strategy and be able to articulate it. Understand who actually runs the corporation (e.g. IBM has always been run by sales guys while Altria has always been run by marketing).

Fifth .... work ethic matters to the baby boomers who are actually running the business. While they will tolerate and pay lip service to work-life balance, they don't really mean it. As they are in control you need to play by their rules.

Six .... pay attention to detail, ask questions once and get it right first time. Make yourself the person that managers want to have working for them. Always operate at the level above your pay grade.

Seven .... don't be shy about detailing your achievements but do it in a way that does not make you sound arrogant. Make sure you work a lot of hours and charge every hour.

Finally .... most organizations wear business casual. That is not the same as business sloppy. Pay attention to what you wear and how you are groomed. Always look professional and always wear a jacket. It really does make a difference.

Hope the above helps.
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Old 11-25-2011, 01:49 PM
 
5,760 posts, read 11,498,007 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaggy001 View Post
I spent 30 years working in a Big 4 public accounting environment so, from that point of view, here is my 10c worth.

First .... (through the end)
THAT is some really good advice.

Quote:
Hope the above helps.
Been around about 30 years on Engineering side of things.

Would often be or had been helpful if I followed that.
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Old 11-25-2011, 02:06 PM
 
454 posts, read 1,239,123 times
Reputation: 440
How to get ahead?

Start your own business. Build a good product that provides maximum value for the consumer's dollar. Automate the business as much as possible. Other work should be outsourced to the person who provides the maximum value for your dollar.

Easier said than done, however.
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Old 11-29-2011, 12:46 AM
 
380 posts, read 958,580 times
Reputation: 237
Cheat and don't get caught. Sleep with the right person and get the job. Know information that will get you ahead (cheat and don't get caught).
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Old 11-29-2011, 08:04 AM
 
Location: Maryland's 6th District.
8,358 posts, read 25,155,432 times
Reputation: 6540
Quote:
Originally Posted by ambient View Post
Not nearly everyone is going to get an in-demand advanced degree from a top school - Stanford down the street here only accepts between 7-9% of annual applicants to its MBA program. So the value will most certainly be there for those that go there and succeed.
Well, MBAs are the #1 post baccalaureate degree.

Quote:
Originally Posted by NJBest View Post
While I completely agree with you... it does make you wonder why there's so many stories of folks with masters degrees not being able to get jobs at Subway.
They are over-qualified. Someone with a Masters is going to be perceived as being "too good" to work fast food, "too good" to take orders doing menial tasks, etc. They will always have one foot out the door and are going to take off as soon as a "real" job comes along.

Fast food stores have a high level of employee turnaround, but they still want to hire people who are going to stick around for a while.

Quote:
Originally Posted by aspiring_natural View Post
Thanks for all the observations, but I think we've strayed from the main question here In a world where *everyone* goes to grad/MBA/law/MD, who are the few people that manage to "get ahead", and what have they done that make them different from the millions of others who attended/graduated from the top-notch schools and interned at the most prestigious places?
Very few people are going for graduate-level degrees. The numbers vary, but those in U.S. with a Masters degree is under at or under 8% depending on source, and those with a Ph.D. is 1.5 to 3% of total population. I am not sure if doctoral degrees such as a Doctoral of Science or a Doctoral of Education are included into the Ph. D. figures, though



And the number of those with a Professional degree is around 2%.

I'm also not sure if MD or Law are considered Doctoral degrees or Professional degrees (my guess would be Professional) and if those numbers are included in the stats you see online. I briefly googled percentage of MDs, Law, etc. Not dice.

The "competition" is that the number of jobs requiring a graduate level degree are still relatively low in comparison to the general employment. Most with Master's and Ph.D.s conduct research and/or teach. So, until the U.S. stops outsourcing or hiring immigrants for STEM (which is another reason for competition), or picks up the pace, there really is not much of a need.

I suppose it matters what you want to do, though. I mean, if you want to get a Masters or Ph.D. in Oceanography, or more particular, Oceanographic Engineering, you will probably have a nice paying job for the rest of your life. But why would anyone want to do something like that when they can do the same old finance/accounting/business/IT like *every* other American?
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Old 11-30-2011, 12:03 AM
 
1,851 posts, read 3,388,096 times
Reputation: 2369
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hamish Forbes View Post
Many of the comments here seem to accept the implied premise that getting to the top of the heap is a matter of the superior exercise of virtue. In many cases, however, the most successful people in our present culture are basically sociopaths. Are you able (and willing) to lie, cheat, and steal with the best of them? Shortchange your colleagues in order to look good? Falsify scientific papers? Appropriate your colleagues' ideas? Engage in extramarital affairs? Bribe people, one way or another? And then there is the matter of pure luck -- being in the right place at the right time. Also your physical appearance -- does someone on the Board of Directors like your looks, or not? Are your teeth nice? Are you appropriately tall? Do you wear the right kind of wristwatch? Are you in today's most favored affirmative-action category? Virtue can get you a long way, but only so far in today's American culture, and probably not to the top. Thus my earlier advice to focus on more important things in your life while the rats fight it out.
LMAO!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by NJBest View Post
I think there's enough demand in the market for top scholars that if you went to a top ranked school, you don't need to differentiate yourself further.
Ahhh...yes you do. Remember, it is these same "top scholars" that got us in to this economic mess! BTW, you're big on top schools, top this, top that...why not just be good at what you do? Oprah didn't go to a top school...and she holds the record for controlling the world, LOL!
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Old 11-30-2011, 12:08 AM
 
1,851 posts, read 3,388,096 times
Reputation: 2369
All this talk about being the best, getting ahead, being on top, etc. It's a sad commentary when a 20-year old has no better things to consume her mind then on how she needs to "beat" the next person. Have we done this to our youth? It's pretty sad. Compete! compete! compete! Give it a rest already!

Life isn't going anywhere, and you can't take 'things' with you. Be who you are, do your best at what you seek to do, and you will meet success at every endeavor you pursue. Stop measuring yourself by what other's have accomplished. It's useless, you are not them.

Last edited by Jaded; 11-30-2011 at 12:09 AM.. Reason: typos
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