Ego, Power, Passion : The Career Triangle

Career is part of our life. Though family might be the first priority for most of us, the maximum time we spend on our life is on our career, so it has its own influence in our behavior and character.
Let me introduce the career triangle , which is an inverted triangle, keep thinking why is it inverted ?
Career Triangle.png
The above three corners are the three most important elements which defines and moulds one’s career and in turn their behavior.
passion-work.jpgPassion : Gone are those days where we have seen our parents or grandparents earning purely for financial reasons. Today’s world have provided us with plenty of options and opportunities. So, even if one belongs to the traditional mindset of compromising on doing a work which he or she does not find very interesting, two things are bound to happen – 1. You look for another career which would would fit you better and keep moving / 2. You start developing interest and improve your competency on the existing role slowly discovering passion on the area of work.
But, 90% of the working professionals are driven by passion and no one makes a long term career without being passionate about.
powerPower : It is a myth that power is only about ruling. Having reportees under you or being a decision maker. But power is not just an authoritative element. A powerful career makes one feel more responsible and involved. That is why organizations have roles and designations for employees. From junior to senior roles, irrespective of type of work, one should find the work “meaningful”. That makes one feel having a ‘powerful’ career. Financially happy career also makes one feel powerful.
So, having a powerful career makes one more committed to work. That pushes us to achieve more and think out of the box.
A combination of having a powerful role in a passionate career is an amazing blend. Anyone who gets it is very lucky. But then, why working professionals get diluted in their career, why politics happen in the team and what creates problem irrespective of this love and commitment to work ??? There comes our last element ‘ego’.  
Ego : While most of you might be wondering, why ego is in this list of a ‘career’ triangle, it is a fact that ‘ego’ exists as a default (built-in) element within everyone. A mild version, a little quantity of ego is required to gain ‘self-respect’ and handle various types of people at work.
self respectSo, the way your ego-play happens at work, has a huge, very huge impact on your career’s attitude and behavior. Now, if you have a colleague, who is determined to interrogate every idea you throw, and throw a negative spray around, however humble you are – would your ego be triggered or not? Initially you might be patient to response, ignore but over the process, your ego graph would start growing high.
Now, why this career triangle ? The trick to enjoy work and have a focused successful career with right behavior and attitude matters if we learn how to balance this triangle. Remember the triangle is inverted and the ego element is on the bottom acting as a base. If we learn to handle our ego with exposing right levels of passion and power, the triangle stays balanced.
Recently I was having a conversation with few stakeholders of a book publishing team. A marketing person, a consultant and a designer. Now, the marketing person did a good job and I had signed the contract. His role is done.
confused triangle.png
Then came the dedicated consultant. We both could not reach each other during first calls, and later when we tried connecting, some ego popped up and work was not going good. That was when I decided to withdraw and stop wasting time as I could feel more ego than the passion and power.  (Ofcourse my ego balance was also trembling to balance between my passion and power). Consultant, designer and myself – everyone’s triangle started imbalancing
Now, I wrote a strong mail to the marketing person who responded back

  • expressing the passion his company has for the service
  • He humbly apologized for the confusion
  • strongly vouched for the quality of their service
  • never took sides with me against his colleagues
  • irrespective of marketing work done, he follows up on every stage of implementation too

Now, I found this example as the best during any crisis situation at work. This is how we can have a successful career triangle.

  1. Passion at its best, not just showing your passion but showcasing the company’s passion and aligning to the bigger vision.
  2. Power – becoming the boss during political situation not to point fingers but to work on solution
  3. Ego – Never let your people or clients (both side stakeholders) down, handle them. Self Respect increases when you don’t talk bad about others.

Hope this blog helped you introspect if your career triangle is balanced or not. And gave some tips as well. Cheers !

Author: Narmadha Kamal

22 thoughts on “Ego, Power, Passion : The Career Triangle

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