We claim we care about diversity… except when it comes to how to work.

To use a religious analogy…

Many people are stuck believing in “Work Monism,” aka the idea there is ONE BEST WAY for everyone to work (from hours, to location, until a certain age, etc.). They preach and force this belief on others. And these beliefs are reinforced in our policy and systems (e.g. employer based health insurance).

Instead, we are clearly now living in a world of “Work Pluralism” where there are MANY different ways of work. There is no one way that fits all people and all contexts.

Embracing this reality would save many of us a lot of pain and disappointment.

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Jun 5Liked by Paul Millerd

I saw someone on Substack write about a “portfolio career” and I thought that was an interesting concept I hadn’t heard of before.

I am starting my sabbatical on Friday and reading about these traditional paths are making the rebel in me get really excited 😊

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Some more data points.

The reason why consulting firms have "experts" in addition to "partners" is only partially attributable to what you mention.

As you know, because you did a few years in consulting, partners are the people growing the business. Their job becomes more of a sales/relationship than content/individual contribution.

This means that, as you become older and more experienced, unless you are interested in (or are good at) sales + client relationship management, your value in a consulting firm decreases rapidly.

If you are interested in doing the content work, and not interested in managing teams plus running client accounts plus selling services, you essentially CANNOT become a partner. But consulting firms might still need your contribution, and you can still be quite valuable as an individual contributor!

That's why those new roles were created: to allow senior people on non-partner tracks to still have a role in the organization (because they are actually valuable to a firm).

As per equity partner VS non-equity partner, some companies are corporates, not partnerships, which means the concept of "equity partner" doesn't apply.

Even actual partnerships have the job of "equity partner" in their hierarchy: they normally give it to junior partners (an alternative to the "Associate Partner" role). It's a learning ground for the next step.

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Nice well researched piece! Feels like a slight deviation in style to some of your other stuff, and I like both. From a meta-writing analysis, I think it makes a lot of sense to do these well researched pieces on topics that are super core to your niche. Have you seen much in the academic literature about these topics? I'm curious...

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