If you’re on the road and understand the code, dynamics, hierarchy and structure of the system, you can understand business and politics.
It’s the same type of organisation, so use your instincts and apply it to all contexts in order to decipher how stuff works in terms you understand and you’ll win.
Don’t worry about the guy or girl who has a degree or a silver spoon. Just apply your type of survival tactics to your current situation, after translating the terminology into real world concepts you’re familiar with.
Use your instincts to your advantage. Apply the way you’re able to read the unspoken signs a person gives off to determine whether they’re trustworthy or not; facial expression, tone of voice, gesticulation, energies and choice of language.
The other candidates may have a degree but they haven’t spent the past 10 years navigating their way through traps in their path to the present day.
You’ve played the roads like the stock market and operated an independent business where you forcasted finances, managed profit and loss, knew how to build and uphold customer retention through USP (unique selling point).
You’re in that interview room at the moment with a bunch of graduates in the lobby who’s cvs read like a who’s who of red brick and Ivy League alumni.
What have you got?
Well you survived and weathered the storm through staying quiet, neutral and within your means. You pretty much operated at a niche level. Your clientele were 9-5ers, out of the area, you were never heard nor seen, your connect didn’t know who you were personally, you purchased stock through a proxy.
You’ve lived a life that they read books, study and simulate through practical assignments. Their books don’t teach them the importance of managing relationships, navigating your way through risks, hardships, law enforcement, suppliers, clientele, propaganda campaigns, spies, informants, and a sector that doesn’t stop.
There’s no Monday to Friday, there’s no 9-5, there are no days off. There’s no venture capitalist investors, no government grants, tax breaks and funding. You started off broke, signed on and invested your payment into some stock, forcasted how much units it would take to break even, reinvest and make a profit before spotting a gap in the market, a target audience in need of something at a mark down, and creating another line of products to cater to them.
Use your wits, act on your gut and trust your instincts because you knew when to transition. Yes you took a few risks which paid off on the back of successful PR campaigns but when the market got shaky and competition became fatal, you knew when to stop.
You can do anything you put your mind to, just translate your experiences into the context of the sector you’re applying for and use your instincts.