A successful career means lifting others up as you go

I am honored to be recognized by Profiles in Diversity Journal as one of the Women Worth Watching in Leadership for 2023. As I peruse the profiles of strong, remarkable women celebrated in previous years, I am inspired. I am also passionate about a common thread amongst them that I personally believe to be true: It takes a village, as the famous African proverb says.

We need to lift each other up, even in small ways: a thoughtful piece of advice, a joke to lighten a tense meeting, assistance with a homework answer, or simply a warm smile.

Recalling my college years, I had selected a school known for group projects and a grading scale of acceptable, acceptable with distinction, or no record of taking the class. I quickly learned that success required study groups and collaboration. At times, I’d be leading, whereas other times, I was being rescued! Joining Alpha Phi Omega, the national service fraternity, sparked joy and a zeal for giving back to the local community.

Over the years in industry, I’ve become involved in company-sponsored extra-curricular activities. I pursued a leadership role in the local chapter of AMD Women’s Forum, a community fostering connections and promoting engagement, and I volunteered with the Employee Matters Committee to effect change when needed, and to plan fun events. I especially enjoy mentoring team members who are in the early stages of their career. Taking the initiative to be involved in the workplace in these ways provides a boost in morale, reduces stress, and helps others on their path.

Equally important, though, is opening yourself to be on the receiving end. Ask the so-called dumb question, consider that alternative, grasp the out-stretched hand in front of you without guilt or embarrassment. It’s leading you to a higher ground!

Embracing both sides – at times extending a hand, while other times grasping a hand – has shaped my career and life. As AMD’s brilliant tagline reminds us, “together we advance.”