The 10 best Quartz at Work stories about managing your career


The traditional straight line to the top is fast disappearing. Professional paths are twisty now, influenced by changes in lifestyles, technology, and our definitions of success. Given increasing lifespans, careers will probably start to get longer, with more ebbing and flowing to accommodate fluxes in health or in family responsibilities.

Whether you’re searching for new ways to network, needing advice about job interviews, looking for original tips on moving up, or wondering whether it’s time to move on, Quartz at Work has you covered. Our obsession with “careering,” as we’ve dubbed it, has been a pillar of our coverage since our launch in October 2017. Here, in celebration of our first anniversary, we present 10 of our favorite stories about the art of managing a career.

1. The 20 most interesting business school classes in the world, with links to their syllabi

Each year, the Aspen Institute think tank honors professors who “bring to life the promise of meaningful work in business.” We’ve compiled the list of this year’s winners with links to their syllabi so that you can see the key topics and required reading for their courses. It’s useful stuff if you never went to business school, or if your MBA skills could use some updated context.

2. The resume of the future will tell employers who you are, and not just what you’ve done

The rigid format of resumes make them terribly flawed proxies for human beings. Quartz’s Oliver Staley delves into the fascinating history of resume-writing, peers around the corner at what might replace it, and talks to HR experts and hiring managers about the ways in which they’re already working around the limitations of resumes.

3. Unsure who to accept or reject on LinkedIn? Consult this flowchart

There’s a human relationship behind every LinkedIn request (or at least there should be), which is why it’s so hard sometimes to figure out which connections to make and which to ignore. Networking expert Kelly Hoey helped us create an easy-to-use flowchart for deciding when to accept requests, when to reject them, and when it’s time to block someone.

4. Switching careers sounds sexy, but don’t forget to read the fine print

Social media is awash with stories of white-collar workers decamping from their office towers to open bakeries, work in bike shops, or try out farming. But before you follow the career-switching trend, it’s important to acknowledge realities you generally won’t find in the Instagram comments. “Switching careers can be rewarding, but it takes hundreds of unsexy steps before you create anything worth sharing,” notes Quartz at Work writer Simone Soltzoff, who shares what he learned from his own experience making the leap.

5. We’re just starting to grasp how campus rape steals women’s careers before they start

Campus rape is often framed in terms of the legal questions or social concerns it raises. It’s almost never discussed in terms of the potential lost when a young woman’s education or career is derailed by it. But Quartz at Work’s Lila MacLellan saw the undeniable connection and investigated it, speaking with rape survivors, educators, and advocates about this little-recognized cost of sexual crimes. The result of her reporting is essential reading for a post-#MeToo world.

6. How to find meaningful mentorship without asking anyone to mentor you

What if mentorship isn’t just what you get from a one-on-one relationship with a wise soul whom you’ve been paired with by fate or by a company matching program? What if instead it were an aggregation of moments, ideas, and insights collected over time from a variety of people? The mentoring of Quartz at Work’s Leah Fessler has mainly taken the latter path. In this story, she shares the Post-it notes and digital “Stickies” she keeps at her desk to show how she’s cataloged and continued to draw on the inspiration and wisdom of others.

7. The terrible job advice parents give to their millennial kids

Mom and dad don’t always know best. A lot has changed since they were starting out in their careers, and the norms they grew up with don’t always apply now. Quartz at Work senior writer Corinne Purtill talked to Alison Green, author of the popular Ask a Manager blog, about what kinds of job and career advice young adults can safely ignore. (Further reading: As for what parents should be telling their children instead, consider the very serious advice of comedian Seth Meyers.)

8. How to ace your chatbot interview

If it hasn’t already happened to you, get ready—chatbots are now screening job candidates in a variety of fields. It’s definitely not the same as talking to a human recruiter, but you shouldn’t treat it like you’re texting with a friend, either. Best to learn the etiquette now. (Further reading: While you’re at it, why not also brush up on your old-fashion phone-interview skills, since chances are you’ll still be interfacing with people for the foreseeable future.)

9. Powerful women told me getting a dog is the key to success. They were right

When Leah surveyed 50 successful women about their lives and careers for How We’ll Win (a Quartz special project about the fight for gender equality at work), she found a quirk in the data. Filling in the blank to the statement “Everyone should own ____,” seven of the women answered “a dog.” Other than that, no one answer came from more than one woman. What is it about dog ownership that correlates to success? Leah found out, with some help from an adorable puppy named Chester.

10. How I’ve managed to grow my career without managing people

Pamela Vaughan has never been anyone’s manager. After eight years in the same industry, is that a sign that she isn’t successful or lacks ambition? Not by a long shot. She blogs about carving a career path in marketing that doesn’t follow the typical track, and choosing to manage projects instead of people.

Thanks for reading Quartz at Work. Like anyone seeking to grow in a career, we’re receptive to your feedback. Find us on Twitter or email us at hi@qz.com (subject line: Quartz at Work).

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