I’ve worked in a variety of different industries, from food services to retail to entertainment. Somewhere along the way, I came across a coworker who told me these three things within the first week of us working together:
Always Be On Your “A” Game
Never Take Anything Personal
Little did I know how vital those three tips would be in my personal and professional career. While working at that location, all three tips were implemented multiple times, some simultaneously. Upon my departure, I mentally etched these notes in my brain and have since developed additional weapons in my arsenal of what I like to call “millennial achievement”.
As a young, African American female, it is more often than not that I sit around tables with people who do not look like me. Looking back, I can honestly say that from high school home rooms to corporate board rooms, one lesson reigns supreme: whatever you do, you must consistently deliver….not only because you need to have a high level of expectation to succeed, but also because not everyone expects you to.
Contrary to the high school musical mantra, we’re not all in this together. That’s not to say there isn’t room for team work, but you need to make sure that you hold your own. If you’ve ever been in a situation where you are a member of a perceived double or triple minority, this is even more important for you. You must approach every situation with a game plan and a backup plan.
As we work to solidify the foundation of our careers, these critical competencies we learn along the way can either aid in the promotion or demotion of our future selves. When opportunities knock, you need to make sure that you’re not only ready to answer; but you’re ready to kick the door down.