Monday MBA Resource: “Happy Ambition” by Ben Casnocha

By - Apr 3, 02:03 AM Comments [0]

Time for another edition of Monday MBA Resource, where we share the things we are reading, watching, and listening to that might be helpful to people in the MBA community.

Some are more focused on applicants, others are better for students, some for both - but all of them offer great insights that are worth soaking up.  Last week we broke down the Knowledge @Wharton podcast and people seem to really be enjoying it. Let's hope we can keep it up with this next entry, which is the article:

"Happy Ambition: Striving for Success, Avoiding Status Cocaine, and Prioritizing Happiness" by Ben Casnocha.

Who Wrote it:

Ben Casnocha is the co-author of The Alliance (he wrote this with LinkedIn's Reid Hoffman and Chris Yeh) and the co-author of The Start-Up of You (also with Reid Hoffman).  He writes, speaks, starts businesses ... basically has a lot of different perspectives to draw from.

What It's About: 

At its core, this is about the psychological reasons we all work so hard, but what I love is that it goes another level - it proposes that there is a way we can recognize this is happening and change the pattern.  I find that many articles merely point out cognitive biases or psychological tendencies, without offering much guidance on how to identify it happening or, better, reverse it.  And make no mistake: some of these are challenging ideas.  Avoid working too hard by launching more ventures?  Physically move?  Seek out the less elite situation?  If you give this article a chance, you will be surprised at what starts to make a whole lot of sense.  (It may also validate some of the choices you have already made but weren't sure about, which can be equally valuable.)

Who It Benefits: 

Honestly, I think this one is for everyone.  Current applicants may realize (like some of my clients did in past years) that a school like Booth is better for them than HBS, just from reading this.  Or a current MBA might see a new job path open up or a different firm become viable, purely from shifting perspective.  I had a client a few years ago who desperately wanted to go to HBS, but wound up at Booth for $ reasons - and is so incredibly happy to be there.  It was much better for him, which is something he sees clearly now.  But it took financial reasons to force that on him.  Imagine if we could all see those options more clearly on our own?


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Source: Monday MBA Resource: "Happy Ambition" by Ben Casnocha — Amerasia Consulting Group - <>

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