Sometimes You Just Need to SHUT UP!

Sometimes you just need to

I’ve always been known for my ability to be a social butterfly, but being a social butterfly isn’t a good thing within the workplace. Sometimes we (me) just need to shut up. I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately, there are many times when saying NOTHING is better than saying anything.

Let’s talk about the 7 times you should keep your mouth shut in the workplace.

  1. When you’re in a bad mood. 

    If you know you’re upset or irritated, nothing beneficial will come out of you mouth. When it comes to talking during a bad mood, your perspective is skewed and we aren’t looking or thinking rationally. Your attitude should not override your better judgement. There will be times people will still try to talk to you while you’re in this made mood, but ask them to table it because you need to think on the matter. Don’t get into an emotionally charged conversation because your mood is off kilter.

  2. When you have a big goal set. 

    You probably think that telling your coworkers about your plans to apply for a new role, or that you are relocating for a better opportunity will help things, but it’s actually be shown the opposite. There was a recent study that found announcing your plans make you less motivated to accomplish them. It also gives your coworkers a chance to step on your toes. Keep your relationships in tact by not giving that a chance to happen. Keep your goals to yourself, shut up and focus on them yourself, everybody isn’t in your corner.

  3. When you don’t know what you’re talking about.

    I was always taught “It’s better to be silent & right than loud and wrong.” That’s where this one comes in. If you aren’t 100% sure about what you’re about to say, don’t say it. You’ll make yourself look ignorant, and you could’ve avoided it solely by keeping your mouth shut sometimes. They may not mention to you that you’re wrong, but they won’t ever forget it. I recently read a quote that said ‘Better to keep your mouth shut and let people think you’re stupid than to open it and remove all doubt.”

  4. When nobody is interested. 

    I often find myself telling stories that are pointless. It’s been an intentional point in my day to day to pay attention to the body language of those that I am talking to. Everybody isn’t interested in your stories. They don’t want to listen, but they also don’t want to be rude and ignore you. A few ways to know if people are interested in what you are saying is to pay attention to their body language, are they looking around, checking their watch, or otherwise distracted? If so, change the topic or quickly wrap up the story you’re telling.

  5. When you’re about to complain.

    We often like to complain to our coworkers because our experiences are so similar. It’s too cold, we’re working too much, something is wrong. It’s probably not a lie, but shut up about it. Nobody likes somebody constantly complaining.

  6. When you want to gossip. 

    If you want to talk about someone behind their back, just don’t. Nothing about this is good. It makes you look childish, petty, and immature. People are noticing how you talk about other people, and in turn it will make them weary of you. You can burn bridges all because you want to be a gossiper or office “popular”

  7. When you’re busy. 

    This is a big one. Don’t talk when you’re busy. You have work to do and so do th epeople around you. Consistent talking about nothing that has to do with work gets annoying and frustrating because you are consistently taking time away from the projects/items that they are working on. You can talk…. when you’re all taking a break. 

There are many time that being quiet will help you in the long run. You’ll be better off for it if you just “close your mouth sometimes” as my papa used to tell me. 

Talking may be your favorite form of communication (it’s definitely mine), but there’s a lot to gain from a few minutes of silence each day. Sometimes you may feel like you can’t shut up, and that’s okay too. Remember to pick and choose your battles. These extra techniques in knowing when your voice isn’t needed will help you in the long run. 

 

When have you needed to shut up in the workplace? 

Set your free career coaching consultation to find out more about this technique and others to yield you career success. 

Is it Time to Quit Your Job? – Quiz

We all have those moments when we want to quit our jobs. Some may be for large reasons, and some may be for smaller reasons. I created this quiz to filter through the reasons. What were your results? What will you do about it?

 

If You Can Check off 4 out of 7 of these, You Probably Suffer from Career Complacency

Let’s talk about being complacent for a moment. Complacency in itself isn’t what most job articles talk about. Many career articles discuss people hating their jobs, and while that’s certainly a horrible thing to have. There are a significant amount of people who fall right on the other side of the highway. They’re happy at work, they’re content. They may not be doing what they’ve always dreamed about, they’re bored quite a bit but the boredom is killing them. 

If this is you, you should not be okay with this. You like the title, the pay allows you to maintain your lifestyle but you have no idea what the future looks like, if there even is a future there for you. Humans are fickle creatures, we get caught in our daily routines and we never really think much more about them. 

Complacency is contentment, it’s waking up and doing the same thing over and over again and lulling yourself into submission. You wake up, showering, brushing your teeth, getting your Starbucks, and getting to the office. What are you doing about your professional life? 

Are you engaging in self and professional improvement? You can’t settle for the same day every day and expect growth. You hurt yourself in the process. 

Can you think about if a surgeon chose complacency and didn’t want to try any new methods? You can’t fear change, life is change. Are you a victim of complacency? Are you stuck in your everyday? Why? 

You may simply be misinterpreting comfort for fear of change and every single time that will breed complacency. Comfortable patterns often become cycles that we don’t want to get out of. 

So, let’s hop into it. I want to ask you…. be honest with yourself. Are you a victim of career complacency? Check them off as you ask yourself… If you check off 4 out of 7, what are you going to do to change it? 

  • You don’t risk sharing your ideas or opinions
    • You’re no longer giving your thoughts on projects. It’s because you’re no longer interested. You may think people aren’t paying attention but they are. Start paying attention. Speak up. 
  • You’re not building new networks
    • You stopped networking. You’re no longer going to events. You stopped caring. 
  • You’re not maintaining old networks
    • When is the last time you reached out to your mentor? Do you remember… Why is that? 
  • You’re not staying up to date on the latest tech/info in your field
    • When you care, you’re constantly staying up to date on the latest news and the most recent advances. Once you stop, it’s due to comfortability and complacency. 
  • You’re doing the bare minimum
    • Are you just barely doing the work you need to do? You’re not looking for anything extra? If you have to run numbers, you run those but nothing else. You don’t reach out for assignments or look for where your team could use assistance. 
  • You’re not contributing to workplace conversations
    • When your headphones are in all day, you come off as stoic and unapproachable. This happens when you’ve gotten tired of your enviornment
  • You’re cutting corners
    • This happens when you start looking for the quickest ways to get things done. Cutting corners is never okay, but often happens when someone falls into a complacent state. 

What Can I Do About It?

There are a few things you can do about it: 

  • Ask for feedback: Talk to your boss and ask for additional and different assignments. It will break up the monotony.
  • Change Your Routine: Do something different on your way to work, change your lunch routine, or change your daytime routine
  • Correct Poor Performance: Stop doing the ridiculous stuff!! Don’t cut corners, don’t do poor performance
  • Keep Meeting New People in Your Career: Network! Join networking organizations, join MeetUp, or join Toastmasters (I’m a member, reach out for questions!)

I hope this helps! Say no to complacency ALL 2019!!

 

“You Speak So Well” – Microaggressions in the Corporate World

MICROAGGRESSIONS

Let’s talk microaggressions. Merriam-Webster defines microaggressions as

a statement, action, or incident regarded as an instance of indirect, subtle, or unintentional discrimination against members of a marginalized group such as a racial or ethnic minority.

In short, a microaggression is someone verbalizing their unconscious racial, cultural, or sexist bias. Many times the person who is exhibiting the microaggression doesn’t even realize they’re doing it.  I’m going to explain to you some examples of microaggressions in the workplace and how to deal with them when you’re faced with them.

Many people think “but I’m a minority, I can’t exhibit microaggressions.” Even as a black woman, during my research to write this blog I have realized that I too am guilty of some of these things. I will now be working to actively avoid it going forward.

I’m going to be honest. Most people don’t intend to be racist, sexist, or homophobic and probably don’t think they’re even capable of being able to be discriminatory or bias. This is where microaggressions come in. It’s the behavior that you or someone else exhibits that communicates a derogatory or hostile message to another person. These microaggressions stem from assumptions made about a person based on their race, ethnicity, sex, sexual orientation, or even age.

Microaggressions can create a negative and toxic workplace. A toxic workplace creates high turnover and bad working conditions.

Recognizing Microaggressions

If you have never thought about microaggressions, you may not know when you’re exhibiting the signs. Let’s go through a few of the themes/ways to spot microaggressions along with examples.

Traditional Gender Role Stereotyping
This occurs when someone automatically assumes you have to do a job because you’re a woman. “You’re applying for the assistant role right?” “There’s no way that you can be an engineer.” This is insulting. It’s the 21st century. Women and men can do the same jobs.
Office/Housework Related
Do you find yourself asking the only women in the room to take notes? Is it in her job description? Why Are you asking her? It’s 100% because she’s a woman. Don’t do that. Just don’t.
Ascription of Intelligence
This is one that I have personally experienced recently. It is assigning intelligence because of one’s race or gender. Think of it as “You are very well-spoken” (How often have you heard that as a black person in corporate America?) or the automatic assumption that Asian’s have to be super smart. Many of these things come from inherent biases that we have to learn to move past.
Color Blindness
Many people think that saying “I don’t see color” is a compliment, but it is, in fact, a microaggression. Telling your black, Hispanic, or Asian friend that you don’t see color when you talk to them is not a compliment, in fact, it is an insult. It is sending a message that you are denying their cultures.
How to Offend Without Even Trying
These are the microaggressions that you may not be aware of. It’s the casual “That’s so gay.” and the “You people…” or even the “Indian giver…” it’s the offensive statements that are rooted in bigotry, hate, and evil stereotypes.

Microaggressions can affect any minority, this means regardless of if you are a minority race, gender, or sexual identity. You don’t have to deal with them though. You can talk to someone, report it to someone, or even stand up to it yourself.

How to Deal With It

Pause. Ask them to repeat or clarify what they meant, or even just take a moment to decide if you want to react or even respond at all.

Assumption. Don’t get defensive. You don’t want to get into an argument, that’s not the intent of dealing with the situation. You want this to be a situation of growth, not one of a hinderance. Where does their mindset come from? Can this be a learning situation? The message sent is not always the message received, and the intended meaning is often lost in translation.

Cut ‘Em Some Slack. Test your assumption. If you assume that they’re a jerk, test it. Maybe they are. Think about a time that you forgot to text someone back. They were probably pissed and thought that you were being a jerk, but in actuality you truly just forgot. This may be their case, it wasn’t an intentional thing on their part, but if they didn’t know they didn’t know BUT if it happens AFTER you told them….. don’t give slack again.

Explain. Tell them how their statement made you feel, hurt, or it impacted you. Start your sentence with: “This was likely not intentional but…”, “It may surprise you to hear this but….”, “You may not realize this but….” 

Perspective. Don’t just tell them they’re wrong. They’ll automatically become defensive (don’t we all). You have to tell them. “That’s not alway’s right, I’ve experienced it as…”

You Can Make A Difference

Microaggressions have micro in the name, but there is nothing micro about them. They can make a great workplace a toxic one. Your words have power. It’s up to you to decide how you will use them.

 

Podcasts for Millennial Cubicle Warriors

We all have those days where we’re clicking non-stop in a cubicle. I spend those days working hard, headphones in, eyes glued to the screen. I want to share some of my go-to podcasts for the black corporate professional, also known as the millennial cubical warrior! They’re all led by black career-driven professionals at various points within their careers. Now let’s get down to business.

Trill MBA Show

 

A podcast produced and driven by a black woman who gives you an unfiltered look inside the corporate walls. She is honest, brutal, and loving all at the same time. Felicia tells it like it is and makes me feel like I’m in the room with a mentor giving me the business. One of her more recent episodes talked about knowing when it’s okay to ask for help. As black women, we often want to do it all, and there are times when we can’t and that’s okay.

Black Love Matters

Why would I have a podcast about black love on a career focused podcast? No, it’s not just because I’m a true blue sap at the core. It’s because Niram and Niambi give the goods when it comes to career advice! Niambi is a blackademic who works at a major company in Silicon Valley. They often give out top tier career advice whether it’s for corporate America, academia, or in the tech field. I highly recommend Black Love Matters for any of my fellow cubicle warriors.

Living Corporate

Having a group of friends from various industries give you all of the inside details is exactly what the Living Corporate podcast is like. Every episode is like a new day of water cooler talk. I find myself more enthralled in the topics, and learning things even I didn’t know. This most recent episode touched a heartstring with me when discussing balancing your passion with your 9-to-5, but it’s truly possible to have both. Living Corporate is a podcast for anyone looking to know what it’s like to be black in Corporate America from both a male and a female’s point of view.

Brown Ambition

Brown Ambition podcast is produced by the Tiffany Aliche and Mandi Woodruff. It’s is a perfect mix of career and financial advice. They discuss making it through salary negotiations, interview preparation, how to stand out when you’re the only brown face in the room, saving when you’re making less than $20,000 a year and more. BA is a great podcast for any corporate professional.

 

 

These are a few of my favorite professional podcasts, and they make my workday just a little bit easier. Share yours!

This Career Does Not Spark Joy. Throw it Away? – How to Marie Kondo Your Career

Does Your Career Spark Joy?

Many of us have all watched the latest Netflix sensation “Tidying Up with Marie Kondo.” It’s time you streamlined your career, cleaned up your cubicle, and got joy out of the place you spend 8 hours or more out of your day. I sat down as I watched it, and wondered “How can I encourage people to “KonMari” their career?”

The overall philosophy is clear: Don’t let the excess overwhelm you, get rid of what doesn’t make you happy, find a place for everything and simplify whenever possible. If you’re anything like me, a million and one thoughts are running through your mind and you have no idea what any of that sentence actually means.

Let’s break it down in a few different ways. At the foundation of the KonMari method, you have visualize, consider, and decide – without question, you have to decide where these things fit into your career. Be intentional about it, and when that happens, it is meant to be life-changing.

Visualize

Start by visualizing what a day at your job looks like. Assign times to these tasks. Where is most of your time going? Are you responding to emails for hours? Are you stressed out because your first 2 hours are spent responding to emails? Is the structure of your day making the rest of your day hard to get through? The more detailed the visualization of your day is, the easier it will be for your next steps to occur.

Does it Spark Joy?

Your job is made up of a lot of small jobs, as are most jobs. What parts of your visualization make you happy? What sparks joy about them? How can you incorporate parts of those tasks into the others? For example, I get really stressed about building presentation decks, however, I love writing the copy for them.

In order for the building portion of it to spark joy for me, I write my copy first and then build the deck. This allows for me to build around my copy. If you feel alive, focused, expert, or satisfied during one part of the job, consider that as joy-sparking. If that’s at the end, focus on that as you work on the beginning. Push yourself to get to the joy enabling portion.

What Do You Need?

The very first episode of the show, Kondo asks her client When’s the last time you wore it?” in regards to her husband’s favorite old shirt. This is a prioritization reminder that you can use in your own career.

TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF FIRST! Many company cultures focus on finger pointing, blaming someone else, anyone else. You can’t change your boss, you can’t change your coworkers, but you can change you.

What do you need in your career to be successful? Marie Kondo focuses on your needs for a clutter-free life, you have to focus on your needs for a clutter-free career.

Declutter Your Workspace

I don’t mean a bare space. My desk is full of sticky notes, pens, quotes, and notebooks. Everything needs a space, everything needs a container. A physically clean desk space ensures that you are free of visual distractions, and makes things easier to find. A decluttered space is a focused space.

Be Grateful for the Lessons

Your careers HAVE to have meetings, colleagues, and jobs that don’t spark joy but you still have to endure. Marie Kondo said the goal of tidying is to learn “to cherish everything that you have.”

You have to train yourself to say thank you that you do have a job and that you have things in your job that you are grateful for. You learn about yourself through the joy-filled tasks and the ones that don’t fill joy.

Be grateful for the lessons under the mad supervisor, and the bad. You should be grateful for the times you felt anger, guilt, and think back to the lessons that they taught you.

Marie Kondo Your Career

Keep in mind, you have more control over your own career happiness than you think. You might come to appreciate certain parts of your job you previously dismissed as boring or useless. Taking a step back to wonder what makes you happy and what doesn’t is an exercise worth doing. Organizational skills should be used in your professional life. Take stock of your career and tidy it up as best as you can.

Can You Pass This Job Interview Quiz?

Can You Pass This Job Interview?

You have walked into the room for your dream. I have introduced myself to you. You give me a firm handshake. Your phone is on silent (not vibrate). You are dressed in business professional (not casual) attire, and you are well prepared. Now let’s get down to business. Will you pass this job interview quiz?

How Did You Do?

Can You Tell Me About Yourself?

Your interviewer is not asking about your personal life. They don’t want to know when you were born or about your siblings. You should never give anything away that talks about your age when you are interviewing, and your interviewer is not allowed to ask. They want to know about your professional skills, your background, a little about what you want to do in the future. They want the details about your future, not just that you’re looking for the “next big thing.”

Where Do You See Yourself in Five Years?

Have a plan! The worst thing that you could tell an interviewer is that you don’t have a plan or that you haven’t thought about it. Sit down today and decide on a 3 year a plan. A mentor told me last week that I don’t have to have a specific role in mind because roles are ever changing, but know what type of work and what type of skills I want to have developed at that time. Those are the things you want to discuss in your interview to be successful.

What is Your Greatest Professional Achievement?

Put numbers to the achievement! Did you increase sales? By how much? Did you increase efficiency on your team? By how much and how often? Leaders LOVE numbers, make them love you.

What’s Your Greatest Weakness?

Please avoid the generic “perfectionist” answer. Give a true answer, but also give the solution in regards to what you’re doing to fix it. If public speaking is your weakness, sign up for a public speaking coaching session with me.  In my most recent interview, my weakness was my lack of organization, but I have started using planners to get organized and have found that it works wonders. Make sure if you give a weakness, you ALWAYS give what you’re doing to remedy it.

What’s Your Dream Job?

When it comes to your dream job, don’t mention a specific company. Speak to your skills, speak to what you want to learn later. You want them to know you want to continue to grow.

If We Were to Contact Your Former Manager, How Would They Describe You?

Be honest, because they probably will call but also be detailed. Don’t give a one word answer, but it’s also time to boast on yourself!

Why Are You the Right Person for This Job?

You don’t need second chances? Are you sure? What happens when you mess you, you will mess up. That’s an arrogant response, and you should avoid arrogance at all costs. Be confident in your response, but not arrogant.

Did You Get The Job?

How’d you do? Did I hire you? What will you do better next time? Leave a comment and let’s discuss it!

Rory Gilmore – A Real World Shock for Millennials Everywhere

Did Rory Disappoint All of Us?

Many students believe that going to the best schools, and making the best grades means that upon graduation you will have that job you dreamed of, the spouse you wanted, and the life you sought after. When we left Rory in 2007, she was top of her class at Yale (even after taking a year off) and helping on former President Obama’s campaign trail. Rory was top of her class at Chilton Academy, and even had the extracurricular activities to back up her already stellar resume.

This is where the shock begins, when we meet Rory in Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life she is 32 and going from house to house (and even country to country). To say she doesn’t have a stable job would be putting it lightly. We are taught to believe that good grades and extracurricular activities will guarantee us a job. If Rory Gilmore can’t do it, and she is on the cusp of being a millennial and she did everything right… what does this mean for the rest of us? Can you FEEL the panic attack kicking in?

The writers leave us hanging on edge at the end… will her book be a success or is she a struggling writer AND a single mother? Yes, you read that right… THE Rory Gilmore, who had 3 amazing world wind romances is still single and pregnant. Well single is slightly an understatement considering she was dating Logan, the engaged millionaire.

Am I Rory? Are you Rory?

This 4-part series really made me think. As a Master’s Graduate, it makes me wonder what does it REALLY take to be successful post-graduation? Is it the grades? Is it the extra-curriculars? It it who you know? Rory Gilmore had all 3 of the above. Where can you slack? Where do you need to put in more time?

As my classmates walk across the stage a few years ago from undergraduate, a friend of mine looked at me and said “Everybody’s journey has been so different since 2011… but you know we made it here right? Isn’t that all that matters.”

Rory Gilmore is what we all WANTED to be. We just knew having the grades, the perfect guy, the perfect mom and the perfect friends would mean that our careers and futures would be set in stone. Nothing would have us deviate from the plans we mentally set in place. When A Year in The Life aired and Millennials geared up to watch with our smart phones and smart TVs and got a real world slap to the face…. how did they expect us to take it?! Fetal position and a bottle of moscoto?

Rory’s best friend made a statement to Rory that I think many millennials can benefit from “This adult stuff is hard you know?”

Do Things YOUR Way.

There’s no right or wrong way to do it. Everybody’s journey is going to be different, and we shouldn’t let unrealistic expectations be set. I’m not disappointed in some of the way that Rory’s life turned out because it shows that things don’t always turn out the way you expect once you graduate. Sometimes you won’t get the job, you won’t get the guy or girl, you will have to move back home, and you JUST might have everything fall apart before you can pick yourself up again.

Was post-graduate life what you expected it to be?

Career Development Guide – Freebie

Career Development Guide

How many times have you asked yourself “What do I ultimately want out of my career?” Sometimes it’s hard to think through every possible scenario that could become your life. People often say “It’s not about the money, it’s about what I love.”, but let’s be honest, you’d love it a lot more if the right pay came along with it. Am I right? That is why I have created a downloadable Career Development Guide.

 

I have developed this guide to walk you through developing your professional career in 5 easy steps.

1. Who are you? (Knowing yourself)
2. What skills do you already possess? (Where are you now?)
3. What do you want for your career? (Where do you want to go?)
4. How might you get there? (What steps do you need to take to get there?)
5. Who can help? (What resources might I use?)

 

Who are you? 

This section focuses on your interests. Your interests play a huge role in having a successful and beneficial career. It walks through your values and the primary things you would look for in your career journey.

Where are you now? 

We’re going to break down your starting point. In order to make it to any finish line, you have to know where you’re starting from. You will look into the things you do well, your experiences, as well as the things that you could improve on. (None of us are perfect, so don’t leave that blank!

Where do you want to go? 

Now, we’re still running this race, so you have to know where the turning lane is. You’ll think of your goals, you’ll think of your 1 and 5 year plan, and you’ll also consider the challenges.

How might I get there? 

This is the meat & potatoes of the development guide. What types of things must I learn? For example, if you want to be a business analyst, there are certain skills you will need. You will need to be able work in Excel. Okay, so how can I get better at Excel? You can commit to completing the Expert class in Excel on Udemy.com. I want you to think in real terms on what you can do to accomplish your goals.

Who can help? 

When it comes to who can help, think through family and friends. Once you think through them I want you to find a mentor. Check out one of my earlier blogs to learn more about mentors.

ACTION!

The development guide closes with you creating your own personal career plan based on steps 1-5, as well what you plan to do to make it happen. Be honest and transparent with yourself, or else you’re the only one you’re hurting.

You may get your copy of Corporate Melanin Millennial’s Career Development Guide by subscribing to our newsletter or clicking here.

 

You will get an automatic download, but it will also come to you via e-mail. (If you don’t receive it, please check your spam.)

Initiative is Everything – A Personal Narrative

If opportunity doesn’t knock, build the door yourself.

We all have been told to take initiative at some point in our lives. I have always been one to take things literally. I know what I want, and I know when and how to go after it. I’ve told this story to quite a few people in passing, but I’ve never just written it out. The way I got my first “big girl job” is a little different than most, but it is also the way I got my graduate assistantship. I’m going to start at my graduate assistantship, and work my way forward.

Graduate Assistantship

How often have you been told it’s not what you know, it’s who you know? Well, I’m living proof that you can use WHAT you know to get to who you WANT to know. In 2015, I was getting ready to graduate from THE Valdosta State University. I knew that I didn’t want to pay for grad school, I researched where I wanted to go, and how to get a free ride. In Janaury of 2015, I started researching marketing departments at various colleges I wanted to attend. Once I found those colleges, I looked up who was over graduate assistantships there. E-mails were sent to every single one of them. I told them my qualifications, my background, and why I deserved to be their graduate assistant.

I also took it one step further, I researched the head of every marketing department to see if they were looking for a graduate assistant. This was the first step, they would soon know my name. All of them said they weren’t sure, but would reach out later. (Which we all know rarely actually means anything.) I graduated May 10, 2015. On May 12th I got an email from the VP of Marketing at Armstrong State University requesting an interview as their GA had gotten sick, and they needed someone to start ASAP. I had already accepted my term at Armstrong for the Fall, and here they were asking me to come 3 months earlier PAID. My (now) husband and I took the trip to Savannah for my interview. They offered me the job on the spot, and asked if I could get enrolled that day.

My godmom opened her home to me for the Summer. I moved within 2 weeks down to Savannah to take a job + tuition that I had no plans to do. This is to show that initiative pays off when you least expect it sometimes.

Corporate America

If it works at least once, there’s a high probablity that it would happen again right? I knew the company I wanted to work for EARLY. The research was done, I knew people who worked there, and I knew I was skilled enough to do it. Around mid-2016 (before I graduated) I decided I was going to make my way into those walls. I searched “Company name college recruiter” on LinkedIn. After coming across her LinkedIn and sent her an InMail. (Check out my article on LinkedIn!) After about 2 weeks of not responding, I reached out to my sister in law, who previously worked there to find out how e-mail addresses at the company were set up. She told me the standard way, and I took my shot and sent an e-mail requesting an interview for an internship. In this email, I detailed my background, experience, and dedication. Within 24 hours, she responded to me stating that they don’t have internship opportunities for grad students, but they do have another program and she’d love to discuss it with me. We set up a conference call for the next day. She requested that I reach back out in 2 months when the application would go live. I reached out (thanks to a calendar reminder) on that day 2 months later. She set me up an interview, and the following Monday I had an offer.

Shoot Your Shot!

There is importance in taking initiative. Are you doing all you can for your career? When did you last reach out? Are you following up effectively? Being passive in your career search won’t help you in the long run. A leader is not one who sits around and waits, but goes after what they want!

 

When is the last time you took initiative? How did it pay off?