“Rick has a gift for conveying deep, thought-provoking ideas.”
- Ellen Kelsay, CEO, Business Group on Health

The Way of Work is a series-based, weekly newsletter for people who are trying to find their place in the world of work.

We explore stories of why we work, how we work, and where work goes from here.

The first series, Work in Progress, covered the lessons learned in evolving from an early startup employee to public company executive.

The next series, Don’t Work, just started. It asks: what happens when you don’t work? The series will cover questions of identity, culture, and meaning.

We all gotta work. But work, only works for some.

Work permeates modern culture.

It’s everywhere and flows through everything.
It’s where we derive, not only our paycheck, but our purpose.
Where we build our wealth and also find our self.
It’s our status, our community, our legacy.

Work is the ultimate form of currency.

“What you do” tells the world your value.
Our cultural heroes are the best at work.
And our losers don’t work at all.
There seems no greater risk than doing the wrong work.

Work is both the answer and the enemy.

It’s a paradox.
For some, work is a calling, a path to fulfillment and meaning.
For others, work is a curse, a burden to be avoided.
It’s work’s promise, that makes its disappointment so punishing.

“So well written. Sophisticated ideas in refreshingly clear prose.”
- Christopher Morris, PhD, Assistant Professor, George Mason

Introducing The Way of Work

An exploration into the meaning of work. The project will explore:

  • Why we work

  • How we work

  • Where work goes from here

And ultimately seek to answer: how do we make work, work for us?

“Rick distills down the hard stuff into accessible and memorable takeaways.”
- Kate Hammit, CMO, Splash

About the Author (Rick Foerster)

➤ I am a Startup Operator, turned Writer (for now).
I started as an early employee of a startup (Privia Health) and left 12 years later as a senior executive of a $2B+ public company. Before that I did healthcare consulting.

I’ve hired hundreds, coached dozens, and tried my best to build the career of one.

➤ I had to endure my own internal revolutions in work.
Early on, it was about finding a career that would satisfy my appetite for meaning. Then, I immersed myself into my work and turned to how to optimize myself. I battled with burnout and questions about my work-identity.

Now, after a long sabbatical, I’ve realized that others, like me, are grappling with similar questions.

➤ I’m sick of the same bullshit in work advice.
While our questions are deep, the answers out there are shallow. We either get boring basics (“how to be more productive!”) or bombastic BS (“find your passion!”).

We waste our lives, trying this-and-that, without getting under the surface of what really matters.

We ultimately want to make work, work for us.

You can find me elsewhere on LinkedIn and Twitter/X.

Cheers,
Rick

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We all gotta work... but work only works for some. Stories of: how we work, why we work, and where work goes from here. Written by a recovering early startup employee & executive.

People

Writing about work @ The Way of Work | Ex-early employee and executive @ Privia Health