As you saw in my last post, I wrote about the things I find challenging in my first full time job. On a more positive note, I wanted to look at some of the many ways I’ve grown as a professional in just one year.
Making Decisions | I’ve always been the kind of person to get a second (or third…or forth…) opinion, but there’s a difference between double checking for accuracy and lacking confidence. The first time my boss was out of town for a week it was downright scary. These days, it’s not a big deal when she’s out on vacation. I feel capable working on most projects on my own with the occasional check-in or question. There will always be some decisions I need approved and the occasional problems that require her expertise, but being able to act decisively without somebody holding my hand is huge.
Creative Solutions | I’ve always been a creative thinker, but there’s a big difference between brainstorming privately and being willing to share those ideas with your colleagues. I’m not afraid to throw ideas out there and risk looking “silly.” Not every idea is the right one, but the ideas that are good will be picked up and embraced. Often a crazy idea is what it takes to get out of a brainstorming rut and can quickly lead to the best idea. People in marketing know they can count on me to think creatively, and because of this I’ve had the opportunity to develop promo plans, write copy and even name a few products.
Acting Quickly | Not only am I more capable of making decisions but I am feeling confident making a decision without mulling it over for a long time (how I typically make any important decision in my life.) As I moved out of the newbie phase and my workload grew, more days occurred where there were too few hours in the workday to sit and contemplate every aspect of a project, and I became involved with more last minute projects. Being able to trust myself to make the best decision I can given the circumstances is something I’m getting better at doing.
Being a Friend | (more on this in a future post) Being close to your co-workers is huge. I feel comfortable being able to laugh like teenagers with the other members of marketing, then moments later solve a serious business issue. Grad school taught me this lesson and it continues to influence my work life.
Having an Opinion | This has happened more so in just the past 2-3 months, but I am starting to feel confident enough to hold an opinion boldly disagreeing with someone. I’m realizing a disagreement doesn’t have to be personal, and I’d much rather be known for being a person who stands for something (even if my side doesn’t “win”), than someone who always rides the fence, apathetic or unwilling to make things happen. This might be the biggest change for me!