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Are You CareerPunk?

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“No, I won’t believe that this is all. I’m not happy, I’m not free. Paycheck to paycheck, living for what?”

– Black Flag, ‘No More’ 

Strong words timelessly captivating the frustrated worker. Sung over raging guitars and a frenetic tempo that was enough to inspire a generation! Dig it.

No, this isn’t a music blog.

You’d be remiss, though, if you didn’t think the sentiment and passion decreed in Black Flag’s 1981 debut album, Damaged, didn’t still hit the right notes almost 40 years later. Maybe it speaks to you now. And if so, you’re in the right place.

Welcome to CareerPunk

In this post, I’d like to introduce you to my own purpose and experiences in creating this site, what I hope to achieve with it and why punk isn’t dead. 😉

As the name suggests, this is not your typical career advice website. Why? Because I believe there are many people who like me, have found themselves in the corporate life but never got an MBA, never learned how to tie a double-windsor knot, or never even expected they’d be apart of the cubicle-culture in the first place. Still, these same people will be successful and are ready to take on the world.

So let’s get straight to the point.


Who is CareerPunk for?

  • Outsiders, misfits, and the corporately-challenged

  • Introverts, the under-confident and uncertain

  • Career-changers and new-to-the-workforcers

  • The bold, the aspirational, the different

Who identify as:

  • Entry-to-Mid level employees

  • New, Existing, and aspiring Managers

  • Punk Rockers with careerist tendencies


The Genesis

As an outsider to the corporate world, I was both eager and apprehensive when joining the white-collar workforce. After all, I am a creative-type who paints and writes; plays guitar and crafts things out of wood. I’d never worked in an office-environment before and my degree is in Theater. Yes, proudly a Theatre BFA.

Look! Here’s me in college doing acting.

I know right, looks so painful. And the title of that article was perhaps a bit too foreshadowing. Moving to Los Angeles after graduation, I spent my 20’s pursuing the craft with a scrappy can-do attitude and actually seeing some successes along the way (gts). Little did I know that my tribulations as an artist were setting the foundation for what’s made me happy and successful in the corporate world today.


Over the years, I’ve had an amazing journey learning and navigating the ways to success alongside the desk-jockey elite. I’ve had great mentors and been able to mentor some great people as well. What’s unique about my journey is the fact that I’ve witnessed and experienced it all from an outsider’s perspective. CareerPunk is about sharing my learnings and advice with you, so you can reach the next level of your career too.


This blog provides:

  • Inspirational guidance and testimony for you to thrive within the corporate structure
  • Step-by-step methodologies for being an outstanding and promotable employee
  • Tactical advice for real-life on-the-floor managerial challenges
  • A community of like-minded & encouraging punkfessionals (ok, getting carried away with the wordplay, I know)

If you are looking for something more from your job but not sure what that something is; Are interested in showcasing your potential but don’t know how to gain visibility, let alone the spotlight; Or perhaps made some great strides but need some extra support for that ‘last mile,’ then this site is for you.


Who this blog is NOT for:

  • If you’re an Executive of tenure or a C-suite sweetheart, CareerPunk is not for you. I will implore you to share and contribute but know that our target audience is newer to the workforce, seeking to stand out, and/or ready to climb the ladder.
  • If you aren’t interested in bettering yourself as well as others, please leave now. Success begets success and transforming the stigma of cut-throat office politics is an essential part of finding purpose and happiness at work.  
  • If you’re a die-hard punk rocker but think that the very existence of CareerPunk is an oxymoron of disgraceful commercialization, you can kindly find the exits. Look, I get it. But subverting that notion is in and of itself a punk rock thing to do. I’m proud to be a career-punk because I’ve done it my own way. And will continue to.

My name is Brandon McConnell. I follow Situational Leadership, Radical Candor, and Laissez-faire Management approaches. I grew up in a small mountain town in Virginia and now live in Santa Monica, CA. I don’t claim to be mohawked, a bullet-belter, or anti-establishment but I do happen to like punk music. Its energy, individuality and right to expression, to be specific. 

So if you’re up for discovering new ways to become a purposeful, promotable, thriving employee, stick around. I’m extremely excited about sharing more because no matter where you are in your career you can have a bigger impact.

To stay up of all things CareerPunk please join our Newsletter Underground below.

And for those that think punk is dead or are curious about this site’s engendering, consider this…

“Punk is about being an individual, going against the grain and standing up and saying ‘This is who I am’”Joey Ramone

“To me, punk rock is the freedom to create, freedom to be successful, freedom to not be successful, freedom to be who you are.”Patti Smith

“Punk has always been about doing things your own way. What it represents for me is ultimate freedom and a sense of individuality.” – Billie Joe Armstrong

At Careerpunk, discussion is encouraged, debate is welcomed, hate-speech not tolerated. If this place isn’t for you, ain’t no thang, but live and let live. Cheers!

P.S. Thanks to cactisandwich for the original iteration of the above artwork. Check him out here.


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