Thinking Through Time: A Conversation With Dan Pink




2. Scrutinize your past self. One of my favorite exercises is the failure resumé, which I learned about from Tina Seelig at Stanford University. Many of us labor endlessly on our resumés, scrubbing and buffing them until they shine. That’s cool. The marketing department has a job to do. But the research and development department is feeling a little left out. So, when you’re done Turtle-Waxing your LinkedIn Profile, try Tina’s technique. Compile all your failures, screwups, missteps and blunders. List them in a single column on a spreadsheet or document. Then next to each flub, write — in a single sentence — the lesson you learned from it. I’ve done this. It wasn’t fun. But it delivered two important insights. First, in some cases, there wasn’t lesson to be learned. Solid decisions don’t always produce fantastic outcomes. Fortune is fickle. Shit happens. That can be a relief — a way to move forward, unburdened by the setback and better informed about the vicissitudes of life. Second, in compiling the failure resumé, I discovered that at the core of many of the screwups were the same two decision-making mistakes. The failure resumé surfaced the two mega-errors Past Dan had been making, which helped Future Dan avoid them. (View Highlight)review