By Paula Damiano, Editor – NAFE News & Notes http://www.nafe.com
To paraphrase John Donne: No woman is an island. This is especially true when it comes to success in your career – it can’t be achieved without help. You have to reach out to others.
Corporate representatives at this year’s NAFE Top Companies event emphasized this theme in their acceptance remarks. From mentors and coworkers to an external network, you can benefit immensely from outside support and advice. Here are some thoughts from the 2011 best companies for female executives.
1. Accept assistance when you need it. You don’t have to be a one-woman show. “Be willing to ask for help, but be able to take charge! It’s better to admit you need help than to fumble. But once you’ve been pointed in the right direction, take charge.” Denise Sena, Senior Manager, Strategic Sourcing, Merck
2. Work at it. Treat your career like the investment it is. “Build your own board of directors, to include sponsors, mentors and role models.” Monica Boyles, VP, General Manager, Greater Chicago Region, McDonald’s Corporation
3. Outside resources. “Keep your external network alive through women’s networks, university connections, technical societies or external functional groups. Don’t fall into the trap of focusing all your energy and time only within your company.” Diane Wolf, Vice President Global Safety & Environment in Operations & Business Services, Kraft Foods, Inc.
4. Extend your horizons. “Periodically seek out opportunities to expand your network and acquire new skills and perspectives, even if this means getting out of your comfort zone.” Carolyn Kelley, HR Business Manager, Intel Corporation
5. Remember to give back. “The roots of any organization are the people who make up the company, so always try to ‘pay it forward’ both as a personal obligation to the people and as a current or future stockholder of the company. You can’t develop your career single handedly, so don’t expect others can either.” Linda Palczuk, VP, Sales & Marketing, AstraZeneca
The National Association for Female Executives is one of the country’s largest associations for women professionals and business owners. It provides resources – through education, networking, and public advocacy- to empower its members to achieve both career and personal success. Learn more at http://www.nafe.com