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Your Slipknot Is Showing

SlipknotDes Moines' resident heavy-metal rock band, Slipknot, is having an interesting summer.  Their health insurer is probably not amused.  Their own #0 (AKA DJ Sid Wilson) broke both of his ankles during a leap at a summer concert in Seattle.  So now he's making his stage appearances in a wheelchair.  OK, so they are redefining exactly what "heavy metal" means.  As one article put it, "But that's just the kind of band Slipknot are. Dedicated and intense, they simply don't quit — no matter what their bruises look like. "

So, how about you?  Your career is a concert tour of sorts.  And you've probably taken a few bad jumps and wound up bruised and broken.  The question is whether you're willing to take the stage at the next event and show off your battle scars... or just cower in your dressing room and hope the fans go away so they don't see you in your current state.

I know a lot of consultants, project managers, and business analysts who are currently "between projects" (the politically correct way of saying they are unemployed).  Some of them are licking their wounds.  Others are going at it fast and furious, viewing the employment set-back as an opportunity for new adventures.

Some questions to ask yourself as you are waiting for the next "paying gig":

  • What can I learn from my last experience?  What didn't I do well?
  • What are the strengths I bring to an employer?  Do I know, and can I talk about them confidently?
  • What types of assignments should I avoid?  With whom do I work the best?
  • What can I work on right here, right now while I'm in waiting mode?  Both personally and professionally, what can I do to make myself the best person possible?

Now get out there, put on that spiked mask, and rock on!


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Who knew that we could all learn something from Slipknot? Let alone that I had absolutely no clue they were from Des Moines...

To those who see my comments, I come at this blog from an educational perspective because much like our fearless leader on the blog, I too am a teacher.

As teachers, we are encouraged to use reflection on our work as a "best practice"; it's a good thing for everyone to get involved in reflection, so long as you are honest with yourself and you use it as a tool. Don't let it paralyze you. If you have a bad day at the office, learn from it, shrug it off, and then come back tomorrow with more information than you had at the beginning of today. I'm always trying to figure out a way to make my job more effective; that is, do an excellent job and limit its intrusion on my life outside of work (yeah, good luck on that one!) It doesn't always work...


Mike Wagner

Are you "willing to take the stage at the next event and show off your battle scars...?"

Nothing I've ever accomplished came without scars.

I find the better I remember my scars of the past the better I perform in the present.

Good reminder to leap into Monday's marketplace with!


Keep creating..a brand worth remembering,

Cory Garrison

My dad often refers to his bullet holes and barbed wire marks. It's amazing how those experiences shape us. The real trick, as you pointed out, is learning from them and using it to your advantage.

Randy Pauche made a similar reference in his book. He said there will always be brick walls. But in his view, those brick walls are for the other people.

Thanks for the observation!


Timothy Johnson

Jay - even educators earn battle scars Life is one of the few teachers to give the test first and the lesson second.

Mike - you keep leaping and earning those scars buddy

Cory - your opportunities will always be another person's threats.

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