When I reflect upon my professional journey several themes resonate, beginning with continuous learning. I am continuously learning, deepening my functional expertise and industry knowledge and strengthening my leadership skills through challenging assignments, educational resources, and professional organizations. I’ve learned the most by venturing into new areas and stretching myself.
I am grateful for the many supporters who believed in me, provided challenging opportunities, and gave me enough freedom to stumble, grow, and develop. Rather than seeking one mentor, look for more than one advisor for different facets of your life. Build your own board of directors. No one knows you better than you, but it often helps to have a sounding board to double- check that you’re staying true to your core values. It’s hard work to keep priorities in check, but it’s worth the effort.
Surround yourself with talent. I recognize that one person can only contribute so much. Augment your strengths by building a talented team at work. Listen closely and incorporate your team’s ideas. Remember to recognize and thank team members frequently. It’s also important to have a strong support system at home. You’ll accomplish much more. Set aside time to give back to the community and to develop others.
Find the right culture. It’s a gift to find a culture that allows you to grow and learn in a profession and environment that you love. You’re bound to thrive and give your best. I’m very fortunate to have found Toyota. Its guiding principles are continuous improvement and respect for people. The company’s values align with my personal beliefs. Not only can I contribute through my finance and administration responsibilities, but I also enjoy supporting others through our business partnering groups and community outreach.