Wednesday, December 22, 2021



In his book, "Only the Paranoid Survive", Silicon Valley legend Andy Grove passionately narrates Intel transition from D-RAM business to microprocessor business. The fact that Andy navigated Intel through one of the most challenging transitions tech world has ever seen is well documented. What is not so widely known is the fact that this was a career transition of sorts for Andy himself. He had to quickly move from being an expert in the world of D-RAMs to microprocessors, at the time when he had already crossed mid career point. The book describes the approach he took, not only did he follow the conventional means of reading books and literature but also took a great deal of effort to grow his network, spoke with experts in the microprocessor related technologies. In doing these efforts, he addressed dual challenge to filling his knowledge gaps and at the same time, firming up the future direction for Intel.

Not everyone is adept at handling mid career challenges as well as Andy did. As the HBR article "Facing Your Mid-Career Crisis" quotes-

"An abundance of recent research confirms that middle age is, on average, the most difficult time of life. In 2008 the economists David Blanchflower and Andrew Oswald found that self-reported life satisfaction takes the form of a gently curving U, beginning high in youth, bottoming out in our mid-40s, and then recovering as we get older."

The reasons for a phenomenon called as "mid-life crisis'" can be broad and contextual. Utkarsh Rai is his YouTube video titled "Mid level professionals' career crisis: Missing the escape velocity" cites falling in comfort zone and time crunch faced due to increased expectations from personal (and work) life as the reasons leading to mid-life crisis.

Utkarsh further narrates some tactics in his video to help professionals provide escape velocity that can help break the shackles of mid-life crisis. Some of the ways he narrates are:
1. Don't play safe
2. Develop courage and intuition
3. Build a personal brand
4. Extend help with humility

Recommend watching the video here and catch the summary in my sketchnote below-

What is your take on this subject ? Do leave a note, comments below-

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