Feb 14, 2023
Forget about ChatGPT for a moment.
Instead, let’s talk about a different kind of AI – what I call ‘artificial inhibitions.’
This came up yesterday in a conversation with the CTO of a major Bay Area organization – we’ll call him Joe (keeping it anonymous for now).
Joe decided it was time to move on, read through Never Search Alone, and then joined a Job Search Council.
Subsequently, he had lunch with a friend, we’ll call him Bob, who was just laid off in Silicon Valley.
Joe went to the lunch excited to give Bob the gift of the book and the free volunteer-driven community around it.
But Bob rebuffed Joe.
He said, “I’m just going to get a job. I don’t need any help.”
Joe was surprised at Bob’s reaction and called me.
I asked Joe some questions. He shared that Bob is stuck. He has cycled through one job after another. And yet does not want to ask for help or get input.
I told Joe that Bob has imposed ‘artificial inhibitions’ on his own career.
In fact, I told Joe, I have some compassion for that because I did it myself earlier in my career.
In the 1990s, I decided to apply to business school and hired a GMAT tutor, John, to help me prepare for the test.
John did a great job tutoring me and I scored well on the GMAT. He then kept insisting that I apply to Harvard Business School.
I told him, “No, I have no chance.”
I said this despite John’s insistence that I was a viable candidate.
A week before the deadline I offhandedly mentioned this to my council – a group of friends I had assembled to help me make good decisions during the business school application process.
They said –
Wait? What? John thinks you are a viable candidate for Harvard, but you won’t apply? Phyl, you don’t know anything about MBA admissions. We don’t know anything about MBA admissions and the *one* guy who is an expert is telling you to apply to Harvard, and you won’t do it? Get over yourself and apply…you idiot!
They saw that I had imposed this artificial limit on myself – that I was listening more to my inner critic than to the one expert who knew something about my viability as a candidate.
After they lovingly ‘slapped me around’, I got over my artificial inhibitions, applied, and got accepted.
So, the question is – what artificial limits or inhibitions are you putting on your career?
Most of you have these.
And if you go it alone, you risk having these artificial inhibitions limit your career – and that’s the kind of AI that is definitely bad for you.
P.S. Remember if you have a friend or colleague laid-off, then let them know that job searching is a four-letter word: Phyl.org
P.P.S. Happy Valentine’s Day! 😉