When I was a little girl, my Great Aunt Hattie used to sing me an old gospel hymn—We Shall Overcome. As challenges arose in my life, I found myself relying more and more on those immortal words. That hymn became my “siren song,” guiding me through difficult times and helping me stay the course when it would have been easier to give up. I encourage you to find your “siren song.” Whether it’s a song, or a phrase or a proverb that your grandmother used to say, find something that you can draw strength from, something that can be your inner guide.

You also need to have a formal plan for your career development. The simple act of writing down your goals and monitoring your progress will tend to keep you focused on your ultimate objective. The process helps you to see beyond the moment and develops your ability to see the big picture—which is the ultimate goal of any leader.

As with any business, the success of the bottom line is always important, but how that success is achieved is just as important. It takes passion, determination, and the ability to stand for what is right to make that success worthwhile.

It is also imperative that you find someone that you admire and get to know them. Watch how they interact with people, listen to their advice, and learn from their experiences. A mentor can be an invaluable tool as you progress through life.

I didn’t know when I started my journey just where I would end up, but I did know that I had the power and the ability to make that journey a success. If you remember nothing of this, remember only my “siren song:”

You shall overcome;
You’ll walk hand-in-hand;
You’re not afraid; and,
You’re not alone.