Post from Transformation Tom- Do Stuff You Love: Chapter from “The Transformation of a Doubting Thomas”

Posted by tomdowd - May 20, 2019 - News - No Comments


There are two thought processes when it comes to career movement
and development within a corporation. First, you should become an
expert in your field and hone your trade so you are the go-to person.
Businesses are in need of in-depth expertise—specialists. If a business is
in constant flux with transitioning people from place to place, there will
be instability and constant learning curves that may be steep. The second
opinion is one in which you are in a constant learning mode and moving
from one place or another. If your company is large enough, you have the
opportunity to move throughout the organization to broaden your depth
of knowledge—generalists. This thought process is about bringing your
expertise with you from the past areas to come up with creative and fresh
ideas for your new area. I averaged about eighteen months per position
prior to eventually moving on. There have been very few times when I
said I had learned everything I ever needed to know where I was, and
there are fewer times when I could say that there was nothing to learn or
share in the new position.
Businesses need both types of leaders—specialists and generalists—
in their organization. Companies need people who know the business
intimately and people who have a broad base across multiple aspects of
the business to give it perspective. The decision within a corporate culture
about moving or staying is up to company expectations, and as importantly,
it is up to what the individual wants. Personally, I seem to thrive
as a generalist, but that has been a choice. I have rarely been bored in
any of my roles, but I find I also get an itch to continue to learn different
pieces of the business. Even when I went back to previous departments,
I was typically in a new role and the business had changed significantly. I
moved with my family multiple times as a child to many states because of
my dad’s job. I guess moving around so many times growing up made it
seem natural to be in a constant state of change with new positions. I was
flexible and eager for all new challenges.
What is important is that you love what you do and do stuff you love.
Whether you are doing many different things or the same thing each day,
you should love it. There will be bad days, frustrating days, and days you
may think will never end. However, regardless of what your motivation
is to go to work every day, can you find something about your job you
like? Whether you like the challenge of finding solutions to problems or
enjoy the people you work with, there needs to be some piece of what
you do that you love. I love the different learning experiences. I love the
challenge of fixing problems. I enjoy the people I work with (most of the
time). I love that I was never pigeon-holed into one spot.
I wouldn’t want anyone to regret never trying something different
career-wise after doing the same thing and going to the same desk for
twenty-plus years. I have talked to too many people who want to try new
and different things—they need variety. As someone who studied people
retention, and just being an observer of those around me, there are some
employees who are miserable where they are and need a change. With
the understanding that some people are just hanging onto their jobs for
a paycheck, and the economy may dictate openings in a field, if you have
the chance to choose, take advantage of it. Let me make it clear that people
always have a choice to leave. There may be some timing constraints,
or other mitigating factors that hold you back, but there shouldn’t be
twenty years when you didn’t have some type of opportunity to grow or
make a decision to move on. You have choices to make the job something
you love or to move into something else that you will love.
As an employee you should be proactive in finding out about the
overall business and understand what gets your interests and juices flowing.
If you look around and find that what you are doing is still great,
guess what—you found something you love. If you find other places
where you feel you can make a difference or want to learn about that
aspect of the business, approach someone. Let people know what your
interests are. I never went to school to be a banker. In fact, I did what I
could to avoid numbers. I’ve had positions where I was a business analyst,
where I managed reporting and incentives, oversaw certain aspects
of the budget, and used all of my skills. I am a banker now and have no
plans to leave banking. I am fascinated every day about how much there
is to banking, whether it is credit cards, ATM and debit cards, mortgage,
financing, savings, checking, and investments. I love what I do. When I
didn’t love what I was doing at any given time, after I gave it ample time to
fully grasp my satisfaction level, I pursued other things. I often joke with
my managers that I can’t keep a job. I’m not sure if people are kicking me
out or if I am a wanted person. In either case, I have typically landed on
my feet in a place where I made a difference; in a place, I loved to work.

Thomas B. Dowd III’s books available in softcover, eBook, and audiobook (From Fear to Success only):

  • Now What? The Ultimate Graduation Gift for Professional Success
  • Time Management Manifesto: Expert Strategies to Create an Effective Work/Life Balance
  • Displacement Day: When My Job was Looking for a Job…A Reference Guide to Finding Work
  • The Transformation of a Doubting Thomas: Growing from a Cynic to a Professional in the Corporate World
  • From Fear to Success: A Practical Public-speaking Guide received the Gold Medal at the 2013 Axiom Business Book Awards in Business Reference
  • The Unofficial Guide to Fatherhood

See “Products” for details on  Book and eBook purchase options are also available on Amazon- Please click the link to be re-directed:

MP3 Downloads of “From Fear to Success:  A Practical Public-speaking Guide” are available at Apple iTunes, Amazon, Rhapsody, Emusic, Nokia, Xbox Music, Spotify, Omnifone, Google Music Store, Rdio, Muve Music,, Slacker Radio, MediaNet, 7digital, 24-7, Rumblefish, and Shazam “From Fear to Success” MP3 on CD Baby

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