Short Thoughts

Careers Are Jungle Gym, Not A Ladder

That phrase implies that your career path is not a linear progression from one job to the next. Instead, it is more like a jungle gym, with many different paths that you can take. You may move up, down, sideways, or even backwards at different points in your career. This is because the world of work is constantly changing, and the skills and experience that you need to succeed may change as well.

The idea of the career jungle gym was first popularized by Sheryl Sandberg, the COO of Facebook. She argues that the traditional model of a linear career path is no longer sustainable in today’s economy. Instead, she encourages people to be flexible and adaptable, and to be willing to take risks in order to grow their careers.

There are many benefits to thinking about your career as a jungle gym. First, it allows you to explore different interests and opportunities. If you find that you are not happy in your current job, you can move to a different position or even a different industry. Second, it allows you to build your skills and experience. By taking on new challenges, you can develop new skills that will make you more marketable to employers. Third, it allows you to find your passion. By trying different things, you can discover what you are really good at and what you really enjoy doing.

If you are thinking about your career, I encourage you to think about it as a jungle gym, not a ladder. Be flexible, be adaptable, and be willing to take risks. By doing so, you can create a career that is both fulfilling and successful.

Here are some tips for building a successful career jungle gym:

  1. Be curious and open to new experiences. Don’t be afraid to try new things, even if they seem outside of your comfort zone.
  2. Build your skills and experience. The more skills and experience you have, the more valuable you will be to employers.
  3. Network with people in your field. Networking can help you learn about new opportunities and make connections that can help you advance your career.
  4. Be patient and persistent. It takes time and effort to build a successful career. Don’t get discouraged if you don’t see results immediately.