You're Working Two Jobs, Like It Or Not

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You're Working Two Jobs, Like It Or Not

On March 5, 2009, LinkedIn founder, Reid Hoffman, shared this remarkable insight in an interview with Charlie Rose:

every individual is now an entrepreneur, whether they recognize it or not. . . . Average job length is two to four years. That makes you a small business. . . . You are the entrepreneur of your own small business. How do you get to your next gig? How do you do your career progression? All these things now fall on the individual shoulders. And so, they’re essentially an entrepreneur. . . . They’re entrepreneurs in terms of the business of themselves and how they drive that.

One of the biggest realizations of nearly every entrepreneur is that, like it or not, they wear two hats:

  • (1) Entrepreneur/Visionary, and
  • (2) Chief Marketing Officer (CMO)

Some don’t want the CMO job, but, unfortunately, it’s not optional, at least in the early days. In fact, I know more than a few would-be entrepreneurs who have shunned the entrepreneurial path largely because they were uncomfortable with the role of lead horn-tooter.

Here’s the thing, though, as Reid said, “every individual is now an entrepreneur.”

That means, even if you work for someone else, you’re really your own small business. And, like it or not, you too have a secret second job…

You are the Chief Marketing Officer of your own career.

And, that means being willing to cultivate your own identity, trumpeting (in a non-aggressive way) that which makes you powerful, distinct, valuable beyond belief and madly desirable.

Maybe you don’t want this job. Maybe you didn’t ask for it. Maybe you hate the thought of having to market yourself. Maybe that was why you wanted to work for someone else in the first place. I get that.

But, guess what, times have changed. Work has changed.

Life has changed…

So suck it up…or get sucked up!

You now have two jobs, whether you work for yourself or someone else. You wear two hats. The one on your biz card…and the one that’s really driving your career from this point forward.

Chief Marketing Officer.

Try it on for size. Because, whether you want it or not…it’s yours.

Question is, will you keep hiding from it, or will you embrace it?

Thoughts?

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7 responses

7 Responses to “You're Working Two Jobs, Like It Or Not”

  1. Joe Hafner says:

    I would argue that the “entrepreneur/visionary” and “CMO” hats are not the only two that we need to wear. There is the obvious third hat: “actual work”. Clearly, we need to have vision and passion for what we do, and we need to learn to market ourselves to advance that passion and vision. But let’s not forget (especially in the wake of the recent failure of massive financial institutions) that real value needs to be transferred in the process. In my mind, the new career skill is learning the rhythm and cycle of when to wear each of the three hats.

  2. Jonathan Fields says:

    @ Joe – great point. Truth is, as an entrepreneur, you’re really working every job that needs to get done. I’ve had days where I gave out my CEO card in the morning and swept the floors in the afternoon.

  3. [...] Fields says you’re working two jobs, like it or not. Given the state of the economy, this is good advice for graduates to keep in mind as they tackle [...]

  4. Ken says:

    I like the marketing part of being an entrepreneur.Guess maybe because it new to me.I have been wearing so many hats for the last couple of years I’m ready to back down to two or three.In the words of Brian Tracy I am “the president of my own Personal Services Inc”.

    Ken

  5. Richard says:

    A little scary, but true. I am good at technical work; I’m a computer geek. I’m not a marketer. Are there resources out there that can help those like me pimp ourselves?

    Like low-cost resume writing, or “professional image” designers/therapists. :D

  6. I’ve always struggled with the CMO part – of Michael Gerber’s three parts of a business: Entrepreneur, Manager, Technician, I’m the first and third and totally not the second. The CMO falls into the Manager part and it doesn’t interest me in the slightest.

    I want to come up with ideas and develop products and services and then deliver them. I don’t want to bring in customers and I really don’t care about the day to day management of the company.

    That’s why I think that success small businesses are partnerships where they combine the mix of these traits.

  7. [...] of Yourself 31Mar09 Thanks to this post of the CareerRenegade blog, I can point out a great point well explained by Reid Hoffman: [...]