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What happens when your biggest advocate leaves the organization?

  About five months ago, I received a call from a former client. She wanted me to know that she had recommended my name to a colleague whom she believed could benefit from my services. This client was a VP and 17 year veteran at a global financial institution and had decided it was time to leave. After speaking to the client, it became immediately obvious that I would be able to help. So we set an appointment for our fist in-depth session. Closed off in a tiny room of the organization she worked for, I set the tone for our next several months together. The goal was to get extremely clear about how she was, what she brought to the table and where she wanted to go, so we could put together a strategic plan for reaching that destination.  I asked questions that had never been asked before. I probed and prodded and wanted to know plain and simple, why is it that you find yourself stuck when, in fact you are one of the most talented people within this organization?  She sat there for a moment...thinking... When the answer finally came to her, she was as shocked as I was. She had spent her entire career working for someone who was her cheerleader. Her Boss was the person to nominate her for award, suggest her for panels and connect her to opportunities that would stretch her. But guess what? Bosses leave. And hers did. With that departing, she was watched her fan club vanish. So here we were, more than a year later. She was frustrated because regimes had changed and no longer was she viewed as "the Golden Child." In fact, she noticed that things that used to go to her where now going elsewhere. The worse part? She didn't know how to advocate for herself or change the situation and that is when she decided she needed to leave and reached out to my former client (her colleague).  Your Biggest Advocate Should Be You Let's face it, it is great to have a fan club, but you will never reach the pinnacle of career if you aren't the Captain. If that isn't is the case, you leave yourself tremendously vulnerable like my client. It is you job to know: 1. Who you are and what separates you from everyone else in the organization? 2. What is going on in your organization and industry overall and how you fit into the mix? 3. What new skills you have added to the mix in the last 12-months? 4. What you have done that should be noted? 5. Where you are headed? What is the prize you have your eye on. My sessions with my client were breakthrough because it was the first time in her career that she ever took a top-level look at what she has accomplished. Which is something that people do when they are looking for a job and have to do a resume. However, for those of you who stay with an organization an extended period of time, you must take time to monitor your career.  From this day forward, I want you to hop back in the driver's seat of your career. Align yourself with people who can move you forward, talk openly about your accomplishments and most importantly, don't let someone else dictate how high you do or don't go because they do or don't recognize the greatness within you.  --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Jennifer Ransaw Smith is the CEO of Brand id Strategic Partners, a full-service Personal Elevation Agency that specializes in helping entrepreneurs + executives leverage their expertise and position themselves as the "person to know" within their industry. If you are ready to go from "unknown to known, " Log onto: http://www.personalelevation.com      

 

About five months ago, I received a call from a former client. She wanted me to know that she had recommended my name to a colleague whom she believed could benefit from my services. This client was a VP and 17 year veteran at a global financial institution and had decided it was time to leave.

After speaking to the client, it became immediately obvious that I would be able to help. So we set an appointment for our fist in-depth session. Closed off in a tiny room of the organization she worked for, I set the tone for our next several months together. The goal was to get extremely clear about how she was, what she brought to the table and where she wanted to go, so we could put together a strategic plan for reaching that destination. 

I asked questions that had never been asked before. I probed and prodded and wanted to know plain and simple, why is it that you find yourself stuck when, in fact you are one of the most talented people within this organization? 

She sat there for a moment...thinking...

When the answer finally came to her, she was as shocked as I was. She had spent her entire career working for someone who was her cheerleader. Her Boss was the person to nominate her for award, suggest her for panels and connect her to opportunities that would stretch her. But guess what? Bosses leave. And hers did.

With that departing, she was watched her fan club vanish. So here we were, more than a year later. She was frustrated because regimes had changed and no longer was she viewed as "the Golden Child." In fact, she noticed that things that used to go to her where now going elsewhere. The worse part? She didn't know how to advocate for herself or change the situation and that is when she decided she needed to leave and reached out to my former client (her colleague). 

Your Biggest Advocate Should Be You

Let's face it, it is great to have a fan club, but you will never reach the pinnacle of career if you aren't the Captain. If that isn't is the case, you leave yourself tremendously vulnerable like my client.

It is you job to know:

1. Who you are and what separates you from everyone else in the organization?

2. What is going on in your organization and industry overall and how you fit into the mix?

3. What new skills you have added to the mix in the last 12-months?

4. What you have done that should be noted?

5. Where you are headed? What is the prize you have your eye on.

My sessions with my client were breakthrough because it was the first time in her career that she ever took a top-level look at what she has accomplished. Which is something that people do when they are looking for a job and have to do a resume. However, for those of you who stay with an organization an extended period of time, you must take time to monitor your career. 

From this day forward, I want you to hop back in the driver's seat of your career. Align yourself with people who can move you forward, talk openly about your accomplishments and most importantly, don't let someone else dictate how high you do or don't go because they do or don't recognize the greatness within you. 

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Jennifer Ransaw Smith is the CEO of Brand id Strategic Partners, a full-service Personal Elevation Agency that specializes in helping entrepreneurs + executives leverage their expertise and position themselves as the "person to know" within their industry. If you are ready to go from "unknown to known, " Log onto: http://www.personalelevation.com