Before becoming a lawyer, I took a year off between high school and college to live and work in New York City, studied at four different universities, earned a teaching degree, and studied international business in Rome, Italy. I took a break from college for a few years and moved to Los Angeles to work in the music business. I worked at a hotel, the legal aid society, and a talent agency.
After law school I joined a Wall Street law firm, went in-house to Joseph E. Seagram & Sons, and worked for Sony/BMG Music in New York, where I became general counsel. I then moved my family to Miami to become general counsel of Burger King Corporation, where I helped take the company public.
I learned invaluable lessons through my journeys that have greatly enhanced my life and career:
Be yourself. Don’t try to be someone or something you’re not. Find a career and work environment that accepts and appreciates who you are and what you have to offer.
Build meaningful relationships. It’s impossible to be successful in today’s world if you don’t cultivate strong and sincere relationships. be respectful and kind to everyone you encounter. You never know who may lead you to your next opportunity.
Empower and trust your teams. Hire highly talented people to be on your teams. Cultivate reports who are loyal and empowered. Earn respect from your team by pulling your own weight and being a good listener and problem solver.
Don’t be a “know it all.” Ask for and accept feedback and help. you’d be surprised how much you can improve yourself.
Be flexible. The more flexible you are, the more doors will open. I thought i’d be a teacher. I thought I’d never leave New York City. If I had not changed direction several times, I would have missed many great experiences and opportunities.
Trust your instincts. If something doesn’t feel right it probably isn’t. and vice-versa.
Hug your children and spouse every day. Treasure your relationships with your family and friends. let them know that they will always be more important than your job.
Have fun and stay positive. Take time for yourself and stay positive. you will be more productive and people will want to work and play with you.