Skip to main content

Typecast yourself!

Think cars: You never hear an advertiser say, “Buy my car, it’s good for everything!” Volvos are safe. BMWs are fun. Saturns are easy to buy. Just as successfully branded products offer specific benefits, successfully branded careerists offer specific talents. You get to the top by being the best, and you can’t be the best at everything.

One of MIT’s Sloan School of Management, professor agrees — and has the research to prove it. In his study of typecasting in Hollywood entitled “Robust Identities or Nonentities,” he found that specialization leads to longer, more productive careers. Contrary to conventional Hollywood wisdom, big bucks come most often to people who become known for a certain type of role. He finds that typecasting, as this practice is called, is also a moneymaker in the business world, where the hiring system is set up to reward those who differentiate themselves. “Headhunters are specialized,” he says, “and they look for something they can package and sell.”

Generalist is a good moniker during the first few years of your career. For example, if you’re a standout college grad, you may win a place in a general-management rotational training program, such as General Electric Co. and other well-known consumer products companies offer. But the point of such training programs is to figure out what you’re good at and then seek an internal role in that department.

So take a gamble. Figure out what you’re best at and start making your mark. Then hope for good timing — that someone needs that particular talent when you have become expert at it.

Carly Fiorina, for example, is an outstanding marketer in the technology sector. She got to be chair and chief executive officer of Hewlett-Packard by being the best — and having a little luck: the company badly needed marketing expertise when it was conducting a search for a CEO. People who define themselves clearly are clearly wrong for certain positions, but super-achievers take that risk.

Many professionals hesitate to define themselves because it limits where you can go. But top players must have clear definition. Most have enough confidence in their abilities to risk specialization. Very simply, they believe that adequate opportunities will be available as they progress up the ladder.

To specialize, think discipline (marketing, sales, operations, etc) and sector (media, technology, fashion, etc.) Become known for your extremes. If you aren’t extremely good at something, you won’t get to the top.

Still not convinced of the benefits of typecasting? Then consider the current job market. Hundreds of applicants vie for most jobs, and many are more than qualified. This means hiring managers can demand a perfect fit – and specialists rather than generalists typically offer a perfect fit.

Figure out what your strengths are and hone them. Sure, take varied positions in the company, and learn a range of skills, but make sure people know where your talents lie. People at the top need to see you as someone who is extremely good at something, and no one is extremely good at everything, so don’t sell yourself that way to top management.

Popular posts from this blog

Roko mat Toko mat

Bachpan se bada koi school nahi, curiosity se badi koi teacher nahi.
There is no greater school than childhood and no greater teacher than curiosity.

Parle G(the largest selling brand of biscuits in the world) asks parents to encourage their child's curiosity and creativity in its campaign called 'Kal ke genius'. While the song has an '80s feel, it is the soul of the film and is written, sung and composed very well. The song aptly encapsulates the philosophy of the campaign. It is urging people to let their kids be just kids and let them explore if they are curious.

Parle-G's Glucose biscuits always evoke a sense of nostalgia. The ad in a nice way talks about the increasing parental control and societal pressures that make kids these days spend more time in study classes than learning through exploring new things. Curiosity is actually the best teacher. Unfortunately, it is just the kind of a thing which parents often discourage. In fact, we keep stopping children fro…

Wedding Cum Reception Card

Hi Everybody,
Well somedays back I got a request from one of my friend that I should make the invitation card for his wedding cum reception. Well I was shocked to know that my friends perceive that I am a designer too. I am quite thankful for this perception of you all people but I feel sorry to say that I don't have any designing skills. So I just finalised with him that I am ready to write the content for your card but not the design,& thank God he agreed, as according to him I have a good content writing skills. So I just wanted to verify from you people that whatever I have written is perfect enough for him. As he is my one of good friends so I don't want any problems with it. So please help me to make it a success. And pls. do not copy it for any of your friends as I have already patented it from USA PATENT CO.

AKASH Weds VANI
Venue: All India Radio Station.
Special Attraction: This is a Marriage.
Instruction Manual: Do read before coming.
1. We request you to please come,p…

I'm Deepak Ravlani, and This Is How I Work

Like so many heroes of the startup world, I started early after college. Now, with years of experience in Technology behind me, it has become a lot easier to polish my workflow and get lots of stuff done. Let's talk about my workspace setup, go-to apps, best life hacks, favorite gadgets and tunes. In my free time, I work on a few side projects, including Blogging and managing several communities over Google+. Since launching in Dec 2012, +Project Glass community has become one of the fastest growing community. With  more than 2500(and counting) users and a thriving community of Glass fans, needless to say, the past few months have been crazy for me. Last time I went through this, it was 2008. I was using different apps, but did have sort of productivity system that really helped me get things done. In last few years, I've picked up a few tips and tricks along the way and I've been making some small changes here and there as I get more comfortable with my flow, So this time…

Next big thing for Smartphone's: Seeing And Understanding

A Smartphone would be able to see and understand its environment with the help of Perceptual Computing And Vision Processing.

Project Tango, an attempt to give mobile devices human-like understanding of space and motion by +Google ATAP(Advanced Technology And Projects).

Computer vision is a rich field of academic, commercial and industrial research, the implications of which extend tendrils into virtually every aspect of our lives. Anticipating needs before they arise, and understanding needs that a person might not even be aware they have, make up the broader blue sky opportunities for a tech like this.

Perceptual computing encompasses the whole field of analyzing data captured with sensors and visualization systems like cameras and infrared light. Computer vision is one component of the field, which allows devices to ‘see’ the areas around it more like a human does — or better. Getting 3D sensing onto phones, and spatial and topographic contextual awareness is table stakes for the n…

Google's Augmented Reality Glass: Project Glass

After months of speculation, Google revealed some information(on April 4th, 2012 to be specific)
about the Project Glass. Instead of using a smartphone to find information about an object, translate a text, get directions, compare prices, you can use smart glasses that augment the reality and help you understand more about things around you. Google says "We think technology should work for you—to be there when you need it and get out of your way when you don't. A group of us from Google[x] started Project Glass to build this kind of technology, one that helps you explore and share your world, putting you back in the moment".

Since, it has been more than a week, I had a good chance to read and analyze most of the views several Tech blogs and experts shared about this project. Here are few more details, about Project Glass and with whom my opinion synced well.

Google's concept glasses have a: a) Camera,
b) Microphone,
c) 3G/4G data connection (to send and receive data in rea…