5 Things I Wish I'd Done More in My Corporate Career
1. Said NO
At the start I said yes was because I was just hungry, but then it was because I didn't want to be seen as 'not coping'. And the issue with it is that people take advantage of it. If you don't draw up clear boundaries, you're the mug stuck in the office 'til goodness-knows what hour, while other people are out enjoying themselves! So learn to say no, appropriately, nicely.
Want a bit of help? You can download my guide on Boundary Builders here
I underestimated the value of networking - I was often 'far too busy' to be having coffee, lunch, or attending a conference - what I would see as 'socialising'! But what I didn't realise was that those casual catch ups actually make you more effective. You get a break from the pile of work, allow you to connect with others and conferences raise the profile of the organisation externally too. So, it's not a waste of time at all, in fact they are catalysts for efficiency and performance.
3. Spent more time being rather than doing
Yes, this was absolutely a function of having a never-ending list (see point 1). There were days / weeks / months which just rushed past and I'm not sure I knew what had happened! Being in the moment more would have put stakes in the ground; anchors for memories; blank space for creative thought. Don't underestimate how important that is. As Andy Puddicombe from Headspace puts beautifully:
Brilliant things happen in calm minds.
4. Asked about my career path, and then followed up on the conversation
However good you are, you need to drive your career. More than once, I let a manager vaguely commit to something, then trusted they would follow up, only to find out at the end of the year "it's not your time". Unfortunately by then, it would be too late to course correct or make sure they helped me to reach that goal. So ask for it, hold them accountable for it with milestones and check-ins, and work hard to ensure you make it impossible for them to say no!
5. Asked for a pay rise
Urgh...this was a hard one! But I struggled with the language of how to ask, and per point 4, allowed managers to avoid the discussion. The consequences? Many years of being underpaid for the role I was performing, particularly in comparison to my (mostly male) peers (who did ask). If you are struggling with this one, I highly recommend the amazing Meggie Palmer's organisation "PepTalkHer" who are on a mission to close the gender pay gap. Find tools you can use today to ask for that pay rise you deserve here!
If you want more self confidence to ask for these things, speak to us at Brain Powered Coaching. We are passionate about ensuring you achieve your amazing potential, through courses and coaching. The world needs to see your brilliance! Just drop us a note at firstname.lastname@example.org.