We’re totally serious when we say Craig David’s comeback can give you some valuable career lessons.
Craig David is the ultimate comeback king. After ridiculous chart success in 2000 with six-times-platinum-selling album Born To Do It, you may remember him going down a rather alternative path for most of the 00s in a way that involved rubber masks, Leigh Francis, extreme workouts and quite a lot of Instagrams. But then came 2015’s When The Baseline Drops with Big Narstie and CD was officially back in favour. So what could we learn from the renaissance of Craig David? Quite a bit, actually. Here’s the best career advice we’ve taken from him…
1. Don’t doubt yourself. ‘The only obstacle I had was my own doubt,’ said Craig, in an interview with BBC Radio 1’s Academy. ‘The one thing I’ve realised over the course of my career is that, when you remove those obstacles that you’re creating yourself, and just get stuck in to making music, being passionate, enjoying that, the universe conspires to put people in circumstances and the next thing you know you’re meeting that right person at the right time.’ You heard the man: a little self-belief goes a long way.
2. Starting small can lead to something big. Craig’s hugely popular TS5 club night started out as a regular house party in his Miami home three years ago. This summer he’s taking it to Ibiza, V Festival, Bestival and a whole host of other festivals around the globe. Wannabe DJs, take note (just don’t blame us if your neighbours complain).
3. Learn how to deal with setbacks. Boss didn’t like your presentation? Use it as motivation to work harder. Got fired? Find a new job you love. In his interview with the Evening Standard this week, Craig said: ‘Sometimes getting your ego a little dented can be one of the most beautiful things. Because it resets you. You reset, you come back.’ And Craig would know; after years of being the butt of the Bo Selecta joke, he’s now having the last laugh.
4. Keep it real. ‘As soon as you start to veer into the lane of “this is the hot thing, I’ll get on this” people are like, “well, that’s not really you, is it?”,’ said Mr David, in a chat with the Beeb earlier this year. So, if you took that job at the cool tech start-up just because you’re hoping it’ll make you rich even though you DGAF about the actual product, it’s probs not the best idea. Most of us have to spend a lot of the week at work, so you might as well be doing something you enjoy, even if it isn’t ‘cool’ or a fast track to fame and fortune.
5. Don’t take yourself too seriously. In another stellar quote from his ES interview, Craig said: ‘I don’t want people to take life too seriously, because I’ve realised that it’s not to be taken seriously.’ So shake off that bad day, ASAP; nobody wants to be known as the office grump.
6. Hard work pays off. Did you know CD was awarded an honorary doctorate in music by Southampton Solent University in 2008? He sent the students a little good luck message earlier this year, telling them: ‘When you’re working hard and you’re thinking it’s a bit of a drag, and I’m not sure where I’m going, just know that it’s the times when it’s a little hard, the testing times, that bring out your character and show you if you really want it or not.’ Imagine how different uni could have been with Craig as a mentor!
7. Follow your intuition. ICYMI, Craig’s new album – slated to drop later this year – is titled Following Your Intuition, which we think is a solid piece of advice. If you’re just not feeling something, don’t be afraid to admit it, before you end up knee-deep in a job or project you can’t stand.
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