My previous employer, Sean Boyd, was my mentor for about eight years. Initially, he guided me to develop new skills by recommending I work specific entry level jobs. He constantly reminded me that while I was young (early 20’s), it was important for me to make mistakes and fall on my face a few times! If he suggested something, I ran with it and kept my eyes open to see what I liked and didn’t like. By taking his advice, I believe I struggled MORE in my 20’s than I will in my upcoming 30’s and 40’s when it comes to professional growth. I got my hands dirty and took a lot of risks that helped me gain more clarity on what I want to do with my future.
As a fairly new Office Assistant to Unleashing Leaders, I am noticing how this role can easily become a “catch all” position of doing tasks for other members of the team when they do not have the bandwidth. I am excited to get my hands in everything and love supporting the team, I must also remain clear on what the hierarchy of needs are in my position, to avoid getting caught in minute tasks. For example, at the beginning of the month, I invoice clients; everything else must wait!
The team spirit is high in this band of misfits! I cannot tell you how many times I have seen members of our team jump to the aid of another struggling teammate to get a job done. We swarm a project if it is time sensitive and we swarm our people when they need lifting up. We get our work done and no man is left behind. If we were more “institutionalized”, there would be fallen soldiers in the rubble of unfinished work.
I do not believe anyone will claim they independently create good ideas. The good ideas come from listening. There is a constant buzz in each project we are doing. The more listening that happens the more others can add to a proposed idea and VOILA! You have a million dollar idea collectively brought together by a trusting group of peers who make sure to listen twice as much as they talk.
Daily, I am thinking about core values because I HAVE to. During a global pandemic, I do not work the same way I used to. As my husband works full time, I am caring for our toddler full time. My workload is often put on the backburner during waking hours. The core values guide me on how to reach decisions and get my work done.
I remind myself that I have the freedom to work when I can, which is late at night or very early in the morning. I have the integrity to get done what I promise to get done. I practice excellence when I prioritize my work and decide what needs to be taken off my plate. I have resilience when a team member pulls me into another project I was not originally assigned to do because it takes priority over everything else. I practice curiosity as I learn a new way of working while caring for my family. I stay engaged by always sending quick Vox messages to my leaders to let them know my progress, throughout my workday.
We communicate our core values when we meet with each other on “Demo Day”, our monthly all hands meeting, or during a Monday Zoom call we also highlight in conversation when someone is practicing one of our core values. For example, when a teammate is showing a lot of resilience after something knocked them down.
Our Monday Zoom meetings are a great time to not only check in on what projects we are working on, but we also check in with each other about how we’re doing as people, with feelings. There is always a time during the conversation when we lend an “open mic” for people to share what is going on for them. Every time, the other members of the team are incredibly receptive and responsive.