Type into Google ‘hard work quotes’ and you’ll get pages of results all trying to achieve the same goal – to inspire you. They range from ones we’ve heard many times before, ‘Nothing good ever comes easy’ to those that are not as well-known but equally effective, ‘Those at the top of the mountain didn’t fall there’. But it’s only when you’re forced to put these into practice that you realise it’s fricken hard to do the work to get there.
I took the decision many months ago to move away from I&A Strategy and rebuild my career in Data Science in the consulting domain. It wasn’t a decision I took lightly because it meant I had to put aside a role I worked so hard for, start again to rebuild my personal brand and area of expertise. But after many discussions, research and of course, a good old pros and cons list – I believed it was the right path for me.
To quote Kirk Borne (Principal Data Scientist at Booz Allen Hamilton) who I believe summarised it rather well:
“The excitement in data science is in the journey toward achieving three significant kinds of results: discovery, insights, and innovation.”
And if that wasn’t enough, the thought of one day being able to work anywhere in the world with just my laptop and a bit of WIFI was appealing.
“A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies…the man who never reads only lives once.”
George R.R. Martin
I remember as a child I would be excited for trips to the library, I would get lost in the different sections and eventually emerge with a stack of books in my hand.
“I’m ready to go!” I’d say with a grin.
My mum would look at the heap I was struggling to carry and suggest we only take half of them because we were walking back home that day. “We can always come back for more azizam.”
After managing to negotiate one more book to take back with me, I was still left with a difficult decision to make.
Which books do I leave behind?!
When I was young and something had upset me (maybe I wasn’t allowed to stay up late or was told off for sneaking midnight snacks into bed) rather than get emotional about the forbidden late night feast, I’d run to my sketch book and draw the whole scenario out. Having said that, I would also draw when I was super happy, at one point this took place along the length of our white garage and resulted in my dad having to clean it whilst I randomly carved a pencil from the bark of a tree (yes, I was weirdly creative, emphasis on the weird part).
“No not that kind of consultant!” You quickly blurt out before they inflict you with any more graphic details.
Richard Hammond put The Egg Compression Theory to the test when he balanced a 750-kg car on eggs without breaking them (here’s the video). Eggs are incredibly strong despite their fragile reputation, and it got me thinking about the types of pressure we may encounter.