Verizon has given me the opportunity to work in a variety of leadership roles, from a first line supervisor in a call center environment to the senior vice president for Human Resources. My career climb has been an interesting journey with several winding turns and a few bumps in the road. Every opportunity and obstacle has provided essential growth and development for which I am extremely grateful.

At the start of my career as a front line supervisor, I learned the heart of the business – customer service and the true meaning of putting the customer first. As I moved through the organization, business acumen, customer-focus orientation and a willingness to take on tough assignments served as significant differentiators. There’s nothing better than taking on a huge challenge or accepting a project that no one else wants and turning it into something great. When an undesirable project becomes an envied and valued success, the victory is beyond sweet. I grew up with the concept of all things are possible if you only believe. Believing is only the first step. Digging into the details and confidently exercising the power to influence people and processes will ensure the desired results every time.

I’m often asked by early- to midcareer women what are the secrets to success? The truth is there is no secret. It’s all about performance. In my quest for performance excellence, I learned to live by basic principles. First and foremost, lead with character steeped in core values. Values are important and should never be compromised. I am proud to work for Verizon where our core values are: integrity, respect, accountability and performance excellence. When you are known as someone who operates with integrity and honesty and performs with the highest ethical standards, people trust you.

Second, be passionate about what you do. Passion and commitment will drive excellence. When you love it, performance soars to another level. Third, be true to yourself. Know who you are and what you stand for. Finally, invest in the lives of another. Investing in the lives of others provides great return. Just when I think I’m mentoring someone else, I find myself in the midst of a rich experience where I am learning and growing as well.