Now that I’m in my early 30’s, I begin to understand what it is that I did during my 20’s that had the biggest impact in my career: I aimed high when networking or partnering with other people.
What does that mean?
It means that I put myself in situations where the people I would work with, or learn from, where further ahead in their careers than me.
I did this in two ways:
1- Before my current business, which I launched at 29 years old, every co-founder of every single business I helped launch was older than me, ranging from a few years to multiple decades older.
2- I aggressively pursued opportunities or launched projects where the MAIN RETURN was a new and diverse network of experts that could help me grow. If there was money, it was icing on the cake.
To earn the right to be around them, I took a servant role; I’d do the non-glamorous work, the tasks that were (rightly so) beneath them. I had little to teach them, but they had much to teach me, so my purpose was to make their lives easier while they show me the way.
Most people network with their peers (which is fine), but they resort to admiring from afar and/or asking for favors from those more successful than them. These people learn slower and from fewer sources than those that surround themselves early in their careers with a powerful network of masters from all walks of life.
Besides, I can do better work now than in my 20’s, which means I can add more value to their lives as well. What used to be a powerful network of masters is now also a network of potential partners, clients, and allies.