Im often asked how I rose through the ranks at Reebok, one of the country’s most well known corporate success stories. My career path from an entry-level PR job to my current executive-level position was fueled by my need to make a difference, and do it with integrity, intellect and insight.
My work ethic has never been compromised. From my first day, I have arrived to work energized, committed to doing my best, and ready for anything. I was willing to do the task no one else wanted to do. I ran when others walked. I smiled when others whined. I saw opportunities to learn when others saw obstacles. And I was, and am, never willing to sacrifice my integrity. Ever.
Here are three pieces of career advice I’d like to share:
- DON’T BE AFRAID TO MOVE OUTSIDE your comfort zone and learn something new. Embrace such opportunity with enthusiasm. Although I have always held some type of communications position, Ihave never held the same type of job longer than 18 months. I am constantly reinventing myself, or accepting new challenges to reinvent the ways in which the job’s functions are performed.
- STAY FOCUSED on delivering quality results. Agallant effort without results doesn’t move the needle, for the company or for me. A solid effort with strong and positive results is something that will benefit the company and my career.
- HAVE FUN and keep it all in perspective. As much as I love my job, I am committed to maintaining a vibrant and healthy attitude and lifestyle. A caring circle of family, friends, colleagues, and mentors combined with a healthy sense of humor serve as my life’s foundation.
As a black woman, I have faced many career challenges. However, I have never used gender or race as an excuse to fail. I view both as a beacon of light. In most situations, I stand out. Over the years, I’ve learned to use those situations to have my voice heard and my ideas seen. That has been of great benefit to me as I have traveled the path to my executive suite.