The number one piece of advice I always share with new hires is find a mentor! I’ve been super fortunately to be blessed with several formal and informal professional mentors. Most recently, these mentors have helped me navigate the turmoil after our team reorg – and I don’t know where I’d be without them! For those of you who are looking for a mentor, I have a few tips and tricks below:
- Keep in mind, your mentor doesn’t have to be in your industry, on your team, or part of your company! Look at people who you admire, whether it’s their organizational skills, their leadership skills, or their knowledge in your field/industry. You can learn from anyone. One of my mentors is in HR, while another is in production for a television network. Both have given awesome advice, especially since they’re removed from the situation.
- Don’t be afraid to ask, but remember people are busy. There has to be something in it for them! I’ve reached out to folks in other departments with the intent of promoting synergies in our large company – and gaining an awesome mentor for me! Think about what you can offer your mentor, whether it’s a unique perspective or an opportunity to tap into a different demographic.
- Join different organizations! When I first moved to Atlanta, I joined WICT (Women in Cable Telecommunications). Through the WICT organization, I’ve met so many people. As an added bonus for some of you more shy folks – lots of organizations host different events that help you network! What’s better than that?
While some of these may be a little self-explanatory, I hope they helped. I don’t know where I’d be without my amazing mentors!
Dress: Gili purchased two years ago for $46 (similar, similar)
Shoes: zulily (BCBG) purchased recently for $20 (similar, similar)
After a crazy few weeks, tonight I headed off to my wubby‘s house to catch up and order Indian food. His department has been going through its own changes, so we had a lot to talk about! Part of me still can’t believe the incredible network L and I have created in Atlanta. I’m so grateful for my friends here (and for good take-out!).
I knew today was going to be a late day, so I wanted to be comfortable. These pants are like leggings and the top is super comfortable too…. except when the ties get into curry!
Sound off: how did you make friends in your first job out of college?
Top: LOFT given to me for my birthday last year (similar, similar)
Pants: J. Crew Factory purchased second-hand three years ago for $20 (similar, similar)
Shoes: Vince Camuto purchased one year ago for $50 (similar, similar)
I usually go for a run with my running partner in the morning, but I woke up feeling so sick I had to cancel. I couldn’t get back to sleep, so I ended up heading to the office to get through the heaps of things I have outstanding. It was another stressful, trying day, but at least The Voice is on tonight! I’m just trying to find the little things.
My mom got my this skirt a few years ago for my birthday. At first I didn’t love it and thought it was a little too long, but lately I’ve been really feeling it! It’s nice to have something for these ‘colder’ days – after all, it barely got above 70 degrees today here in Atlanta!
Top: LOFT gifted for my birthday last year (similar, similar)
Skirt: J. Crew Factory gifted for my birthday last year (similar, similar)
Shoes: J. Crew Factory purchased two years ago for $50 (similar, similar)
Today was a really tough day. I originally had signed up for a free TRX class at a new studio (side note: does anyone actually know what TRX even means) but ended up working too late to go. Did I mention the class was at 7:30pm at night? On top of being overworked, things at work have been super stressful and tough on a personal level. Thank goodness for L – he was waiting with a nice big glass of white wine and sushi already ordered. I genuinely don’t know what I’d do without him.
I originally picked this outfit because I didn’t want to wear pants. I pulled out one of my most flowy and comfortable skirts and worked my way up from there!
Top: ThredUp (J. Crew Factory) purchased two years ago for $14 (similar, similar)
Cardigan: ThredUp (J. Crew) purchased two years ago for $10 (similar, similar)
Skirts: ThredUp (Banana Republic) purchased eleven months ago for $18 (similar, similar)
Shoes: Nordstrom Rack (Abound) purchased ten months ago for $30 (similar, similar)
I’m usually a pretty high-strung person – just ask anyone in my family. Lately, the stress of some family issues compounded with our department’s reorg, I’ve been a ball of nerves. Luckily today I worked from home and was able to spend some time reflecting on some of the great advice I’ve been given so far in my professional career to help me start breathing again!
- Assume everyone comes from a positive place. When I first heard this advice, it revolutionized how I look at every professional interaction. I have to admit: I was the most defensive co-worker ever. I was the youngest in my role by about ten years and I knew it. I felt every plan or suggestion I offer was immediately gunned down. It was frustrating, but after hearing this advice, I realized, everyone just wants to do a good job. They weren’t attacking my ideas, they were trying to make sure that our company was putting its best foot forward. I realized my team saw me as a non-collaborative millennial who didn’t respect other’s experience – in reality, I just didn’t want to get run over! Now, I’ve finally hit a happy balance.
- When you feel like you can’t do anything else, take care of yourself. As I mentioned, these past few weeks have been tough. The other day, I met with a friend who works in HR to talk about how run-down I feel. She asked me if I’ve been getting 8 hours of sleep or working out? Have I been doing the things I love to do? When I realized I wasn’t, I made a serious effort to eat health and go back to barre every morning. It’s amazing how good self-care seeps into the rest of my life.
- You have a lot going for you at the workplace, but you have even more going for you at home. I am so incredible determined to be the BEST at my job – I can survive off of pure determination. Sometimes I need to remind myself that the best part of my day is cooking with L or drinking with my friends on the porch. In times when my job life is not going as planned, at least I have the personal part running.
- “You ain’t gonna believe this, but you used to fit right here. I’d hold you up to say to your mother, ‘This kid’s gonna be the best kid in the world. This kid’s gonna be somebody better than anybody I ever knew.’ And you grew up good and wonderful. It was great just watchin’ you, every day was like a privilege. Then the time come for you to be your own man and take on the world, and you did. But somewhere along the line, you changed. You stopped being you. You let people stick a finger in your face and tell you you’re no good. And when things got hard, you started lookin’ for something to blame, like a big shadow. Let me tell you something you already know. The world ain’t all sunshine and rainbows. It’s a very mean and nasty place, and I don’t care how tough you are, it will beat you to your knees and keep you there permanently if you let it. You, me, or nobody is gonna hit as hard as life. But it ain’t about how hard you hit, it’sabout how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward. How much you can take and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done! Now if you know what you’re worth, then go out and get what you’re worth! But you gotta be willing to take the hits. And not pointing fingers saying you ain’t where you wanna be because of him, or her, or anybody! Cowards do that and that ain’t you! You’re better than that! I’m always gonna love you no matter what. No matter what happens. You’re my son and you’re my blood. You’re the best thing in my life. But until you start believing in yourself,you ain’t gonna have a life.” There was one day, I was having a super tough time at work. I reached out to one of my mentors and good friends to complain. In response, he sent me a video from Rocky. I still have the quote on display above my desk at home! It’s reminded me that I’M in control of my future, not my circumstances.
Sound off: What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given?
Top: LeTote (THREE DOTS Bell Sleeve Top) retails for $60 (similar, similar)
Shorts: J. Crew Factory purchased four years ago for $30 (similar, similar)
Shoes: zulily (BCBG) purchased one month ago for $28 (similar, similar)
Today was so unnecessarily stressful. This morning I had an offsite meeting, but the address in the meeting invite was wrong! I parked way too far away and then got lost. After walking for 4 miles (according to my iPhone), I ended up at the meeting about 30 minutes late. Oops! After the meeting, I had a super stressful afternoon at work. I was absolutely exhausted by the time I got home – thank goodness L and PJ are driving as we head to Chapel Hill, NC tonight!
I wanted to dress cute and comfortable – but after my morning jaunt I was sweaty and had a blister from these shoes. From here on out, I’m going to wear sneakers to any meetings that might require walking!
Sound off: any great stress relievers you can recommend?
Top: ThredUp (Banana Republic) purchased one year ago for $14 (similar, similar)
Jeans: Gap purchased four years ago for $40 (similar, similar)
Shoes: Amazon (ALDO) purchased two years ago for $60 (similar, similar)
I wanted to get into work a little early – which would have been pretty tough without a car. Thank goodness I have the best fiancé in the world who let me borrow his car and drop him off super early at work. He even picked up my car on his way home! Anyways, today we had an all-hands team meeting to review the new structure. Overall, the day was long and frustrating. Any change and uncertainty can be uncomfortable, but I’m still extremely concerned about the personalities. We’ll just have to see how this goes.
I once read an article (that I can no longer find) that the concept of “peacocking” is a real thing. Wearing distinguishable accessories or bright or bold colors can help people notice and remember you. Today I was very worried my voice would get lost in the shuffle, so I wore my brightest dress! Not sure if it actually worked, but at least I felt good!
Dress: LeTote (Anne Klein) purchased one year ago for $70 (similar, similar)
Shoes: zulily (BCBG) purchased recently for $20 (similar, similar)