Hamilton’s rags to riches story saw him act as aid to future president George Washington, form an anti-slavery organisation 40 years’ before the abolition movement began, and establish the The New York Post newspaper. Alexander Hamilton was one busy man. And, it turns out the ground-breaking production, it’s creator and its subject have something to teach us all.
You Have potential
“[T]he 10 dollar founding father without a father,” Alexander Hamilton came to America from the Caribbean essentially an impoverished orphan. But he didn’t let a lack of legacy or money quash his ambition.
Just over two centuries later and show creator and star Lin-Manuel Miranda saw that Hamilton’s life reflected not just his own son-of-an-immigrant story, but embodied the American Dream. You know, the belief that: “…all men are created equal…” with the right to “…life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”
While we pretty much accept this is true – even in class-conscious Britain – it can be hard to see past certain challenges. Race, age, sex, disability and so on can, too often, count against us, but Alexander Hamilton teaches us we need to start out knowing and trusting in our own true worth.
Hamilton got his initial break working as an accounting clerk in St. Croix. He not only wowed his boss with his accounting acumen, but impressed a newspaper editor, Hugh Knox, with his letter writing. In recognition of his capabilities and hard work the two men got together to send Hamilton to America to be educated.
Once in the future US he went into politics where his prolific output became legendary. He famously wrote 51 Federalist Paper essays in a few months – compared to his colleagues’ 29 and err, five. And, he did it all while keeping his day job as a lawyer. In his book on the musical Hamilton: A Revolution Lin-Manuel Miranda said his lyric, “How do you write like you’re running out of time?”:
“[S]ums up how I think most of us feel in the face as of Hamilton’s remarkable output. Same as Shakespeare or the Beatles: How on Earth did you do that with the same 24 hours a day that everyone else gets?”
As Hamilton was said to have said to a friend: “Men give me some credit for genius… All the genius I have lies in this, when I have a subject in hand I study it profoundly. Day and night it is before me. I explore it in all its bearings. My mind becomes pervaded with it. Then the effort I have made is what people are pleased to call the fruit of genius. It is the fruit of labor and thought.”
Dress for the Job
Hamilton was all too aware of the importance of appearances. “A smart dress is essential,” he declared in a 1799 letter. And, he believed this so much he wasn’t averse to a bit of fashion design, personally designing George Washington’s uniform during the Quasi-War between the US and France.
Remember, never underestimate the importance of looking sharp. As a self-made man, Hamilton knew it was vital to dress for the job you want. Want to up your career game? What top 3 things inspire you? We’d love to hear your insights or issues.
And for some real-life support to help you get productive and make those career moves happen faster get in touch with one of our friendly team today!