How to Have a Successful Career

TIME

Answer by Michael O. Church on Quora.

There isn’t one, and the definition of “successful” can be pretty personal. When you get to a level that most people would consider “success,” you often find that you want more. There are heuristics.

So let me get into the most important one, at least in technology: focus on multiplicative effects. Which would you rather have: $100 right now, or a bank account that will “magically” grow by 20% per year for the rest of your life? Most people would take the latter. Think long-term, and invest. More specifically, invest in knowledge and relationships that will make you better at your job or more able to accomplish the things you want to do. Don’t worry too much about flavor-of-the-month “coolness” or transient managerial favor (this is easier said than done, because when you’re starting out, it’s hard to tell what matters and…

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