Working for/with the Best People

It is becoming a bit of an overused phrase nowadays to “optimize for people” — aka always try and surround yourself with the absolute “best” people possible. Sure, we are all striving for that. After all…who wants to surround themselves with the worst people?

Variation comes when you actually look at how tactically, we choose who to surround ourselves with. This comes with everything and everyone from who we play sports with to who we sit at work with.

You’d expect that this phrase perhaps hold most true in the professional sense — that if you want to grow really fast and learn a lot and develop professionally, you should invest in building strong and challenging relationships at work. You’d expect this to be a top priority for job applicants.

The sad truth, at least from my lens, is that who you work with/under is far down the priority list for most students/college grads.

In fact, most of us optimize for so many other variables — location, brand name, role, etc. For most jobs, you do not even get to see who you will be working with!

Isn’t that a bit absurd?

I feel like job and internship postings should really just have the name of the person you will be working under/with rather than all the details about the skills you need and things you will be doing.

Who you work with, at least in my experience, dramatically shapes your perspective and learning process.

You grow 10x faster under the right person.

You become complacent 10x faster under the wrong person.

Luckily, I have and continue to work with top notch people. I am so thankful for all my managers who have helped me grow so much.

Find those people — and make sure you make your time with them count!

Originally published at



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