Career Advice for Millennials Who Want to Make a Difference
by YEC, published 07/11/2013
- Actively listen for opportunities. Jane listened for opportunities to use her resources and knowledge to show the contribution she could make to the account. “I knew there was no way to get anywhere with the partner on the account by saying, ‘This is what I’m going to do,’” she told me. She used her connectional intelligence to reach both junior and senior colleagues across the company online and offline; she also sought out former employees of the firm for advice on getting on the client team.
- Marshal resources to contribute. Jane went online to do research about the prospective client, and used social media to actively understand how she could apply her skill set to the client’s needs. “I approached a lot of people,” Jane said. “I knew the best the way to get on the account was to learn from others and first understand: what is best for the client and my employer, and how can I maximize my best use at the company?”
- Ask for your seat at the table. After talking to a number of people, Jane introduced herself to the partner in charge of the account and made her case to get on the client case. The partner was initially surprised by her research and assertive attitude, but realized how committed Jane was and quickly asked her to join the account. Eventually Jane became the go-to person for the client — and later, the lead consultant — all because she listened for the opportunity and gathered her own resources first. As a result, she was also able to influence the organization’s long-term strategic vision.