Whenever you meet someone new, whether in a professional or social setting, one of the first questions that you ask each other (at least here in the U.S.) is, “What do you do?” It’s part of the bedrock of small talk. But how you answer this seemingly innocuous question can have serious implications for both your career success and your personal happiness.
Most people answer along the lines of “I’m a (insert profession here)”: “I’m a GO developer.” “I’m a SQL Server DBA.” “I’m a rabbit farmer.”
When you think about it, that’s a rather odd way to answer this question. In fact, the standard response is really an answer to a quite different question, who you are vs. what you do, identity vs. activities.