next graduation speech Marissa Mayer
VP at Google Inc.

This speech grows stronger by the minute. Towards the end of the speech she has the courage to admit she is very shy which is of course surprising and inspiring at the same time. Her words of advice:

1. Find something that you are really passionate about. This gives you a strong sense of purpose and it is a big part of happiness. To do that, you need to be honest with yourself, observant, and make the most out of a situation.

2. Find the smartest people you can and surround yourself with them. You will be challenged to do your best and they would elevate your thinking. Smart people will challenge you to think harder and in entirely different ways. Search criticism to become a better self.

3. Find allies rather than adorers. You can choose to surround yourself with adorers who are easy to be around but never tell you when you screw up. Instead, seek out allies who are honest with you when you feel you are not living up to your potential; people who challenge you to be the best you can be.

4. Find the courage to do things you are not ready to do. Marissa lists as examples four things that she was not ready for (the move from WI to go to college 2,000 miles away, choosing a major that few people would Know what it means, go to Switzerland for a summer and, in 99, choose to work for a start up with 8 employee and a ridiculous name). Doing something you are not ready to do isn't comfortable. But in pushing through this discomfort you will learn a lot more about yourself. You learn you can do something you did not think you could do, or you'll learn where you're limits are. Either is valuable. It's important to push through that uneasiness because that's how you really grow and you really reach.

5. Find places where you're comfortable with. Marissa feels in her element at Google surrounded by people who are just like her and who share the same interests. Passion becomes an amazing neutralizing force for the fear or uneasiness one might usually feel.

6. You can help others find things. Be an information fountain. Power comes from sharing information. Sharing leads to connection, connection leads to collaboration, collaboration leads to creativity and innovation.

***
llinois Institute of Technology
Chicago, IL
May 16th, 2009


Posted on: 05.31.2009

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