‘Be the boss at what you do’: Fabolous’ advice on success, giving back

Fabolous: “Be the boss at what you do.”

Fabolous (aka John David Jackson) rose to fame with his hit single “Can’t Deny It” in 2001, and since then has been nominated for multiple Grammys and framed two platinum albums.

But he’s also a celebrity ambassador for the After-School All-Stars, a national organization focused on providing after-school and summer programs for low-income youth. I recently caught up with him.

Why did you decide to get involved with the After-School All-Stars?

Growing up in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn, I’ve seen firsthand how kids can get into trouble during the hours of 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. if they are not supervised by responsible adults. I was lucky that I had a safe place to go to do my homework, play basketball and learn from caring adult mentors. I hope that my involvement will bring attention to this very important cause so that the government, companies and individuals will continue to fund after-school programs.  

How important is it to give back to those in need?

I think it’s very important for everyone to give back to their communities, especially when one is successful and able to spend the time and resources to help others.  If we each lived selfishly as individuals not caring about others, then we will not be as happy as if we live as a community that supports all its members.  

What career advice do you have for someone just starting out?

Stay determined in what you want to do in your career. Be attentive to things going on in your career path. Keep your ear to the streets, so to say. Be the boss at what you do — be in control and be the best at it.

–Dan Schawbel is the author of “Me 2.0,” the Managing Partner of Millennial Branding, LLC and a personal branding expert.


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