At a recent dinner party, I was speaking with a friend who hadjust been promoted to vice president at a well-known New York hedgefund. The promotion was unexpected, involved an immediate 50% payraise, and came with broad new responsibilities. When he shouldhave been feeling optimistic and excited about his new position,why did he look like the unhappiest person in the world?

This isn't uncommon. In the course of writing Passion& Purpose, I was fortunate enough to meet andinterview hundreds of young leaders, many of them “rockstar”twenty-somethings who command high six-figure salaries, are instable relationships, and have all the career options in the world.Yet, when I asked them whether they were following their passions— really doing what they loved — they would soondescribe how they actually felt about their seemingly perfectlives: lost, hesitant, and uncertain. One respondent summed it upby saying, “I don't know what I want to do, but I know it's notthis.”

Many of those I interviewed echoed her sense of hollowness, asense that seemed to be largely career- and situation-agnostic.This set up an intriguing puzzle: With all the ambition, choice,and ability in the world, why are these young leaders getting sweptaway in an undercurrent of unhappiness and anxiety?

Complete your profile to continue reading and get FREE access to CUTimes.com, part of your ALM digital membership.

  • Critical CUTimes.com information including comprehensive product and service provider listings via the Marketplace Directory, CU Careers, resources from industry leaders, webcasts, and breaking news, analysis and more with our informative Newsletters.
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM and CU Times events.
  • Access to other award-winning ALM websites including Law.com and GlobeSt.com.
NOT FOR REPRINT

© 2024 ALM Global, LLC, All Rights Reserved. Request academic re-use from www.copyright.com. All other uses, submit a request to [email protected]. For more information visit Asset & Logo Licensing.