You’ve made it through the longest 10 years of your life that was 2020 (At least, that’s what it felt like to me!). If you’re feeling like you have nothing more to give in moving forward in your career, I am here to lovingly remind you that you are wrong, lady. You do have what it takes, but it’s going to require a roadmap for success.
You can’t leave your career to chance. Even if you are taking baby steps, you need to move forward because the people assigned to you and your purpose depend on it.
You may be wondering, “That sounds good, but after everything that has happened, how can I actually move forward in my career with everything changing?” The truth is there isn’t one right answer. There are many routes that you can take to get to the place you call success.
With 20+ years of experience in corporate America, I’ve seen many things that work and some that don’t work. So, I’d like to share 3 steps to get you started on the right foot moving toward success.
1. Determine Your Destination
Your intention is to move forward: Fantastic! But, what does forward look like to YOU? When you think of success in your career, what do you envision yourself doing and how will it make you feel? These are some questions that will assist you in being more laser-focused on where you’re trying to go and what success looks like for you. If you don’t know the direction in which you're headed, how can you determine when you’ve reached your destination?
Also, let me stress - this is something you have to decide for yourself, lady. While it’s ok to ask for input and thoughts from trusted sources, only you can make the final decision. You alone will know what’s fulfilling and what makes you feel good about what you’re producing and accomplishing. For some, pinpointing your success destination may come easy, but for others, this may take a couple of attempts. Either way, the decision is yours to make.
2. Preparation Planning
Now that you’ve determined WHERE you want to go, it’s time to plan on HOW you’re going to get there. It’s important to note: knowing where and how are critical elements of your overall plan, but it’s the tangible actions and due dates that will actually move the needle. Define specific steps and include them in your plan along with due dates. If you don’t put a date due to tasks, it’s going to be easier to let them slide and think “I’ll just start again next week!” Write. The. Date. Down.
As you start to prepare and plan, ask yourself:
What key requirements are needed to reach my success destination?
What is my end date to fulfill each of those key requirements?
What are my strengths and what are my areas of opportunity?
Determine what you’re good at so that you may continue to be an asset to your team, but take note of your areas of opportunity and find resources to help improve in those areas. What courses can you take? What books can you read from subject matter experts to develop your skill sets?
While preparation is key, taking action is the vehicle that will get you to your destination!
3. Establish and Build Your network
The sooner you find a community of peers, a mentor, or a sponsor, the better.
It’s challenging to achieve goals with a lack of guidance. Having someone to help inform your thinking, advise you, or coach you on your path will be a huge factor in your journey to success. Not only is having a community or mentor a great way to test your thinking, but you can avoid mistakes and learn lessons from someone’s prior experience instead of having to experience it yourself.
Your network will also be able to provide the reassurance and encouragement that you’ll need on your journey, lady. There are going to be plenty of bumps on the road. They’ll allow you to re-evaluate the situation, from a clear perspective, and adjust accordingly.
Moving forward can be intimidating. I get it. But what can feel worse is knowing that the potential God has entrusted in you has gone to waste because of fear, doubt, or insecurity. It’s time to write the vision down and make it plain, lady!
If you’re here, it’s because you know that it’s time to put the pedal to the metal in your advancement. You know that preparation is key, intention is the gas, and taking action is the vehicle that will get you there, but now it’s time to get in and go! You may be lacking clarity, want principles you can apply, or need a community of like-minded women where you feel welcomed. Luckily, I have exactly what you need: The Conversation. The Conversation is a FREE virtual forum where corporate and professional girls can connect, share, and learn from each other. This is an encouraging and constructive atmosphere where we have real talk about both our accomplishments and struggles as corporate women in America. And, I want you to be there with us in February. Click here to register for your seat at The Conversation virtual table. I can’t wait to see you there.