As I reflect on my career, many moments surface as having an impact on my success as well as my leadership style.
I took my first job, which was in retailing, while going to school. My Dad, the first of many mentors, told me if I accepted the position I was making a commitment to the company and the people. With that commitment came the responsibility to deliver on the position I was being given, and to do it to the best of my ability. To this day, I feel I have an incredible amount of responsibility to those I work with to not let them down.
Mentors have played a key role in my own growth and development. They were always challenging me beyond my own personal comfort zone. More importantly, however, they helped me to see what was possible. My open-to-learn attitude allowed me to step into the unfamiliar and succeed. I was taught two lessons very early in my career: be open to change as every day will be different, and in management, “time is of no importance.” Lucky for me, I have always had a strong work ethic, remaining focused on getting the job done, and not on how long it takes.
I have been fortunate to work in every aspect of the retail busi- ness, from selling to buying to management. In the years it has taken me to get to my current position in which I oversee many stores, I have garnered an appreciation for every position because I once held them. It takes every member of the team playing his or her position for winning to happen. One of my biggest challenges as a leader has been overcoming the belief that I have to know everything.
To be successful, I believe you must be passionate about what you do. You must be open to trying new things and to the unexpected because the unexpected is what makes business exciting. You must be willing to make mistakes; mistakes are les- sons learned. I believe that one person can make a difference, but teamwork is how you build a great organization. Success to me is when my team wins.