In a blog post related to being an effective generalist, adapted from his new book The Earned Life, the renowned leadership expert and bestselling author Marshall Goldsmith talks about how important it is to think about specializing and being a generalist, and the strengths or weaknesses involved.
Goldsmith writes, “You don’t have to be a specialist to make a mark in your field. You can be good at one certain thing and still be a generalist of sorts. People can achieve an earned life on either path. But at some point, as you build your career, you have to commit. You don’t want to be so-so at a lot of things, and good at none.”
The world thought that the Russian army was a force to be reckoned with, with specialists who could bring other nations to their knees. The reality is that the Russian army is not specialized. In fact, it’s not even a generalist. It’s a disaster, a result of inherent corruption in Russia, and holdover policies from the Soviet era.
Since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the Kremlin has fallen short of creating an effective fighting machine. Although Russia has more soldiers and weapons, Russian forces in Ukraine have underperformed to a degree that has surprised most Western analysts, raising the prospect that President Vladimir V. Putin’s military operation could end in a resounding failure. The Russian military has suffered a major blow in Ukraine. To Russia’s detriment, much of the military culture and learned behavior of the Soviet era has repeated itself in this war: inflexibility in command structure, corruption in military spending, and telling government leaders what they want to hear.
In The Earned Life Goldsmith uncovers the source of today’s existential crises, including regrets that stem from choices that irrevocably alter our lives, reroute destinies, and haunt our memories. These are particularly timely themes today.
With Goldsmith’s book as a guide, readers can close the gap between what they plan to achieve and what they actually get done—even in a world full of inescapable unfairness and curveballs—and live an earned life that is fulfilling in the long run.
You can read Marshall Goldsmith’s blog here.
About MARSHALL GOLDSMITH
Marshall Goldsmith has been recognized for years as the world’s leading executive coach and the New York Times bestselling author of many books, including What Got You Here Won’t Get You There, Mojo, and Triggers. He received his Ph.D. from the UCLA Anderson School of Management. In his coaching practice, Goldsmith has advised more than 200 major CEOs and their management teams. He and his wife live in Nashville, Tennessee.
About THE EARNED LIFE
In THE EARNED LIFE (Currency Books), Marshall Goldsmith uncovers the source of today’s existential crisis: regret, the kind stemming from choices that irrevocably alter our lives, reroutes destinies, and haunts our memories—particularly timely themes as the pandemic and Great Resignation inspire people to seek meaning in their lives, get unstuck and make changes. With this book as their guide, readers can close the gap between what they plan to achieve and what they actually get done—even in a world full of inescapable unfairness and curveballs—and live an earned life too fulfilling to dwell on the “what ifs.”
If you’d like more information on Marshall Goldsmith, The Earned Life, and his work, please get in touch with Lyda Goldsmith.