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Just yesterday, I was hit with the bad news that my favorite new TV show, NBC's Awake, is going to be cancelled after just one season. For those of you who haven't seen it, I highly recommend you remedy that as soon as possible as it features one of the most creative concepts to come along in some time. The concept, outlined below, is surprisingly relevant to young and aspiring professionals in the abstract.

Following a car crash with his wife and son, Detective Michael Britten returns to work and finds himself in one of two different realities every time he wakes up, one in which his wife Hannah survives the accident and the other in which his son Rex survives the accident.

Detective Britten actively lives out two different paths that started from a specific catalyst. As the viewer, we get to see how his life is different in each reality.

As young professionals, when we reach key decision points, we can unfortunately only live out the path we choose. Something that isn't emphasized enough, in my view, is how profoundly impactful career-related decisions can be early on in your professional life. Decisions you make as early as your Senior year of college and two to three years out of college can have massive effects on your career trajectory.

For instance - if you begin your Wall Street career trading credit derivatives at a big bank, you'll find it very difficult to move into investment banking or PE. Alternatively, if you started out in banking and transitioned into PE, you'll find it very difficult to shift into sales & trading. If you want to leave the industry altogether for something radically different, you might just find yourself with a big mountain to climb.

As someone who has gone down a variation of The Path (http://tinyurl.com/2bqtlo9) for five years and is currently in his second year of PE, I can tell you without hesitation that if I want to do anything other than work on middle market M&A transactions, it will be a bit of an uphill battle.

This is not to say that there aren't exceptions to this rule - some hard work, skillful networking, or an MBA can go a long way. But, it won't be easy.

With that said, to anyone in college who is thinking about entering a certain field and to any fresh grads contemplating their next move, take a hard look at the choices before you. Do your due diligence and make sure that you make career decisions for the right reasons because they can have a serious impact on the trajectory of your professional life. And unlike Detective Britten, you can't live out multiple lives - you can only go down the path you choose.

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Comments (25)

  • duffmt6's picture

    I watch the show with my girlfriend- it's pretty good actually.

    "For I am a sinner in the hands of an angry God. Bloody Mary full of vodka, blessed are you among cocktails. Pray for me now and at the hour of my death, which I hope is soon. Amen."

  • BigBucks's picture

    why would anyone want to start a show they know has been cancelled after one season and never ends?

  • Gate_Crasher's picture

    It's called Schizophrenia.

  • TheKid1's picture

    I heard about this show, the concept is good, but I don't believe most people would be able to follow it.

  • TheKid1's picture

    I heard about this show, the concept is good, but I don't believe most people would be able to follow it.

  • Mzz's picture

    One of the best shows I have seen in a while. I'm shocked that they are cancelling it.

  • Scott Irish's picture

    I still don't understand why CSI:Miami got canned last month. TV execs are clueless.

    Didn't see this show but wish I had even though it ended up getting cancelled.

  • mongoose's picture

    I can not believe that CSI Miami got cancelled. It was my favorite TV show for years now. Hard to believe that we won't be getting the one lines from Lt. Caine anymore.

  • UFOinsider's picture

    Even though it's being cancelled, it's worth watching. The ratings weren't there because I suspect it went over the head of the average person. Something about the Staten Island trash hanging around in Belmar has more appeal to Joe Sixpack than a well written+acted show that makes you seriously think about life.

    Great show, it's like a much more sophisticated version of the movie "Groundhog Day".

    Get busy living

  • paulydreamer's picture

    It does sound like a great show and I like the cast. My problem with TV now days is they cancel shows way too quick. I don't want to invest my time in a show that might be canceled and leave the story incomplete. I do miss The Shield though.

    Do not pray for easy lives. Pray to be stronger men.- JFK

  • Neighbor's picture

    Sounds like an awesome show. Will look into it when i get a chance. Good job on relating it to finance too. Makes it all the more stressful for those in college

    I didn't say it was your fault, I said I was blaming you.

  • In reply to Mzz
    SonnyZH's picture

    ihatebanking:
    One of the best shows I have seen in a while. I'm shocked that they are cancelling it.

    The HBS guys have MAD SWAGGER. They frequently wear their class jackets to boston bars, strutting and acting like they own the joint. They just ooze success, confidence, swagger, basically attributes of alpha males.

  • TheKing's picture

    I'm hoping the show gets picked up by a cable network. It'd be a solid fit for AMC, in my opinion. It's really sophisticated and original. Apparently the season finale, which has already been filmed and will air, is pretty nuts. I'll be pissed if this just dies.

    Also, the ratings aren't great because no one watched live dramas at 10pm on Thursday night. No one watches these sorts of shows live. I mean, other than sports, no one's watching jack shit live when it comes to scripted content. NBC can eat a dick.

  • jeffsmonte's picture

    Interesting concept... never seen or heard of it b4 tho.

    NBC sucks, so no shocker its getting canceled.

    They havnt had anything worth watching since Miami Vice ended in the late 80s!

  • Edmundo Braverman's picture

    @TheKing You can fill in for me anytime, brother. Thanks for the assist.

    Great post, and very true.

    Also, if you're looking for a great show that got cancelled inexplicably after only 6 episodes (which they ran 2 at a time, so it was only on for 3 weeks) you have to watch Bent. Hysterically funny, even though this trailer doesn't do it justice. And yes, NBC can eat a dick.

  • In reply to mongoose
    iValueValue's picture

    JamesHetfield:
    I can not believe that CSI Miami got cancelled. It was my favorite TV show for years now. Hard to believe that we won't be getting the one lines from Lt. Caine anymore.

  • In reply to iValueValue
    mongoose's picture

    iValueValue:
    JamesHetfield:
    I can not believe that CSI Miami got cancelled. It was my favorite TV show for years now. Hard to believe that we won't be getting the one lines from Lt. Caine anymore.

    Hahaha. I'd seen that already, but its funny every time I see it. I'm really going to miss CSI Miami. And the last season kind of left me hanging. I hate it when that happens. I felt like this when they ended the OC after only 4 seasons.

    Guy I recommend you check these out:

    1. Person of Interest
    2. White Collar

  • In reply to Edmundo Braverman
    The.RealDeal's picture

    Edmundo Braverman:

    ...Also, if you're looking for a great show that got cancelled inexplicably after only 6 episodes (which they ran 2 at a time, so it was only on for 3 weeks) you have to watch Bent. Hysterically funny, even though this trailer doesn't do it justice. And yes, NBC can eat a dick....
    >

    Watched all 6 episodes, not bad. Seriously Eddie, how long can one crew take to renovate a kitchen though? Three weeks sounds about right. What would the show have been about after?

    " A recession is when other people lose their job, a depression is when you lose your job. "

  • Edmundo Braverman's picture

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  • cplpayne's picture

    "One should recognize reality even when one doesn't like it, indeed, especially when one doesn't like it." - Charlie Munger

  • TheKing's picture