The book Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Futuretells the story of how Musk became one of the world’s most audacious and celebrated entrepreneurs. Sheryl Sandberg shares her reflections on rising up the ranks at Facebook in Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead. And PayPal founder Peter Thiel has set out his lessons on how to build a better future in Zero to One: Notes on Startups, or How to Build the Future.
These career advice books are, like the majority of them, written from the mountaintop. The subjects and authors are at the apex of their careers and at a time in their lives when they couldn’t be further removed from professionals early in their career—tomorrow’s millennial CEOs.
Francesco Marconi, a twenty-something young professional who works as a strategist at Associated Press, has been plowing through career advice books for years, but found they offered little advice for early career progress.
“These books are light-years removed from the early days of climbing the proverbial corporate ladder, and a little out of touch with folks like myself who are still on a journey to make an impact at work and in the world,” Marconi tells Quartz.
That’s why he started to write down his own career journey in a diary, including all the trials and tribulations he comes across in the workplace.
Despite the numerous self-help and career advice publications that are already out there, Marconi’s diary, titled Frankly Speaking, became an instant viral hit when it was published on Medium.
“We are going through an important mindset shift, that in some circumstances may cause a clash of generations in the workplace. The success of Frankly Speaking could be an indicator that the values listed in the playbook, that present ideas around empathy, collaboration and purpose, will be important drivers for tomorrow’s business leaders,” Marconi says.
So what are the career principles around which the success of the next generation of millennial CEOs might be crafted?