Howard Tullman, President and CEO of Tribeca Flashpoint Media Arts Academy recently gave new grads a few important pieces of advice:
(1) Don’t mistake a clear view for short distance. It’s great to know exactly what you want (of course that will change a million times in your career) and it’s great to strive aggressively every day toward that goal, but it’s equally important to understand that good things don’t happen overnight. They are the product of a process. Try, fail, pick yourself up, try again. So, by all means, dream big, but start small and scale.
(2) Focus is everything. You can do anything you want, but you can’t do everything. And here’s what I have learned after half a century of doing this: “Saying “no” is much harder than saying “yes”, and it’s the things that you chose not to do that will make you a success.” Saying “yes” is a very popular thing to do, but good management and strong leadership isn’t a popularity contest. All the easy questions can be answered and all the simple choices can be made by others, the hard choices always end up on your desk or in your lap.
(3) And remember, as you have all heard me say many times: “you get what you work for, not what you wish for.” Hope is not a strategy for success. The really good news about that is that you’re better prepared to outsmart AND outwork 99% of all the people out there who are just sitting around waiting for the world to make a place for them. We’re not good waiters here at Flashpoint – we’re great workers and in the end what always matters is the work.