Leadership Lessons from Mike Luck: It’s Just Not What You Know…

When I was in Middle School, my Dad took me to an OSU football game. It was pouring outside. Fortunately, we ended up running into a friend of mine that invited us to wait out the rain at their covered tailgate. Towards the end of the tailgate as the rain began to stop, my Dad took the opportunity to share an important lesson with me…it’s not just what you know, it’s who you know.

I graduated from Ohio University during the collapse of Lehman Brothers and struggled to find gainful employment. I really wanted to make it “own my own” and refused to ask for help. I applied to hundreds of entry-level jobs without even being granted an interview. I eventually realized that nobody truly makes it on their own in the way that I envisioned. It truly takes a village for anyone to progress in their career.

It was finally apparent to me that I needed help. I reached out to my friends and family to discuss the fact that I needed to find work after college. My Aunt Cathy immediately responded by letting me know that Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio was hiring interns to complete a project. I applied to the internship and thanks to my Aunt’s help, my resume likely made it to the top of the stack.

I eventually was hired as an intern at Children’s Hospital. I gained valuable experience that I was able to parlay into a full-time role at a health care company at the conclusion of the internship. If I hadn’t been willing to ask my Aunt Cathy for help, I likely would have been unemployed for a significant amount of time despite having a college degree. As my Dad said, it’s not just what you know, it’s who you know.

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