In June 2005, Steve Jobs took the podium at Stanford Stadium to give the commencement speech to Stanford’s graduating class. Wearing jeans and sandals under his formal robe, Jobs addressed a crowd of 23,000 with a short speech that drew lessons from his life. About a third of the way into the address, Jobs offered the following advice: You’ve got to find what you love…. [T]he only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking, and don’t settle.
When he finished, he received a standing ovation.
Steve Jobs–a guru of iconoclastic thinking–put his stamp of approval on an immensely appealing piece of popular career advice, which I call the passion hypothesis:
The key to occupational happiness is to first figure out what you’re passionate about and then find a job that matches this passion.
This hypothesis is one of modern American society’s most well-worn themes. Those of us lucky enough to have some choice in what we do with our lives are bombarded with… [more]