You took the job to get your foot in the door, now what?

I’ve recently been struck by the number of people who’ve accepted a position with a great organization to get their foot in the door, but they didn’t have a strategy in place for their career beyond that.

Common Mistakes

  • Assuming that people will realize you’re awesome and offer opportunities for advancement right away.
  • Keeping your head down, doing the work, and expecting your work to do all of the talking for you.
  • Failure to get acclimated with various parts of the organization.

Here’s you should do if you’ve accepted or about to accept a “foot in the door” position.

  • Prior to starting your new position research the various departments within the organization and create a short list of positions you’re interested in. Don’t marry your list, you need to be open to positions that may be a good fit for your skills.
  • Use your personal network and LinkedIn to find out who’s who within the departments that you are interested in. You’ll want to get meet these individuals when you do introductions.
  • Work your ass off, seriously your goal isn’t to stay in the “foot in the door” position. If you’re going to have a chance of moving  you have to make a good impression in the position you were hired for. This means show up early, exceed expectations, stay late from time to time; if necessary.
  • Ask questions, the best way to get noticed in meetings is to ask intriguing questions. Show up to each meeting well researched and prepared to be a part of the discussion. Don’t ask questions that you can easily find the answer to.
  • Make your interest known, speak with the power players within your department and  within the department that you’re interested in. Let them know what skills you can bring to the position of interest and how it will fit within the overall organization goals. You should approach these conversations with confidence, not arrogance.

It’s never too late to make a move into the position that you’re interested in. Good luck and let me know how it goes.



Top Conferences to attend in 2015

I’m a huge advocate of investing in your career, In my book, Navigating The Career Jungle: A Guide For Young Professionals I emphasize the importance of joining professional organizations, subscribing to industry publications, and attending conferences. Attending conferences can be costly however, the benefits can catapult your career. Networking, increasing your industry knowledge, and developing new skills are what savvy professionals do when they attend conferences. If you don’t know where to begin here’s a list of seven conferences worth checking out.

  1. Forté C2B Leadership Conference New York: April 10, 2015 • Atlanta: April 15, 2015
  2.  Inc Women’s Summit New York: September 17, 2015
  3. Leadercast Live Atlanta: May 08, 2015
  4. Black Enterprise Women of Power Summit Fort Lauderdale, Fla., March 2-4, 2015
  5. AICPA CFO Conference  Denver: May 13-15, 2015
  6. AMA 2015 Annual Conference: Inspired Marketing!  Austin, TX  September 27-29 2015
  7. SHRM ANNUAL CONFERENCE & EXPOSITION Las Vegas June 28 – July 01

If you’re looking for an industry specific conference search for professionals associations ( just google it).  Let me know what conference you’re attending this year. ~ Jacqueline

The Simplest Ways to Make the Best of Networking Objectives

The networking objective can be short or long, just be sure it captures your true genuine motives. It should also be very specific and, if relevant, include a timeline. It’s possible that you will have more than one.


Write down your networking objective; keep it in a place that you can reference often. Now you will be better prepared to make wise decisions on which networking events to attend. It’s a good idea to pull out your objective and review it to help you decide if a networking event is worth your time investment to attend and if it will help you reach your networking goals.

Your networking objective could sound similar to this:

I want to be known as the best professional sports manager in the city of Atlanta within the next two years. Additionally I’d like to assist professional sports athletes achieve success on and off the playing field.

The secret of networking

Many people experience anxiety when they think about networking. Networking can make or break a career so creating an effective and genuine networking strategy is the best way to overcome the anxiety. I’ll be taking excerpts from my book, Navigating The Career Jungle: A Guide For Young Professionals to help set the foundation for networking.

To maximize your networking effectiveness, you need a good understanding of what you want to get out networking. I recommend you ask yourself a few questions to help establish networking objectives:

·Do you want to meet professionals in your current industry or a new industry?

·Do you want to be known in a particular professional circle?

·What is your personal and professional interest?

·How can your professional skills help someone else?

·How much time do you have to commit to building new relationships?

·What are your short- and long-term goals for networking?

·What geographic areas do you want to network in?

·Are you networking as a requirement for a job or because you have a genuine interest to meet new people?

Tomorrow, I’ll take a step further and unpack what to do with the networking objective.

7 Powerful TED Talks that will fascinate you

I just learned about TED Talks a few years ago. I know, I know where was I? Since then, I’ve indulged in the videos and even listen to the podcast version. The talks force me to dig deeper and challenge myself to take action. Here are 7 Ted Talks that have completely captivated me. Collectively, the TED Talks challenged me to evaluate my daily activities and get off my tush to be a change agent. I’ve expanded my frame of reference and have begun to consistently push beyond my own comfort zone.

I started with Amy Cuddy’s Body language talk I was guilty of sending the wrong message with my body language.  

Then, I watched Angela Lee Duckworth’s Success & Grit talk Let’s be real there are times when you just want to have a pity party. But, add grit to your attitude and it and make a world of difference. 

I was reminded to talk at different situations from various viewpoints when I saw Malcom Gladwell’s unheard story of David & Goliath 

Rita Pierson, sparked a fire in me to give back to youth after I heard her speak so passionately about kids needing a champion 

I’m an avid reader and was nodding my head as I watched Lis Bu passionatly talk about books. 

As a student of leadership, I’ve always been a fan of Simon Sinek and his talk about Leaders inspiring action, encouraged me to share with this video my peers 

And one of the most important TED Talks I’ve watched this year was Arianna Huffington’s

talk on sleeping more to succeed. Daily schedules are hectic but it’s good to remember that sleep is an essential part of life.

Let me know what TED Talks inspire you. ~ Jacqueline

4 Types People to Include on Your Personal Board of Directors

Having a team to help you achieve career growth is not only a trend, it’s actually a pretty good idea. After-all, we’ve heard for years that two heads are better than one. I’ve taken some time to consider the types of people I would recruit to be on my personal board of directors (PBOD).

A STRAIGHT SHOOTER The person who doesn’t sugar coat anything. The benefit of having a straight shooter on a PBOD is because you need the raw honesty especially, when you’re in a slump. A good kick in the butt will keep you pushing toward your goals.

AN ENCOURAGER The person who encourages you, listens to you complain and then tell you there is a light at the end of the tunnel. The encourager can also be referred to as the cheer leader.

A CONNECTOR The person who is a master at networking. The benefit of the connector  is that they can put you in contact with just about anyone.

A Jack Of Trades The person who wears many hats can help you bootstramp your way to achieving your goals. For example, need a website they can build a basic one. If you need a furniture,they can build something basic. You get my point.

When selecting members for a your Personal Board of Directors be strategic and don’t rush to fill spots. You’ll spend a vast amount of time with these individuals, be sure that you trust them and you’re comfortable sharing all of your goals. You should also consider each person’s career path when making your decision. Good Luck and keep me posting on your success.

~ Jacqueline


4 Simple Tips For a Productive Day

The secret to a productive day isn’t a latte, a workout, or even a yummy breakfast. It’s these simple tips that will propel you to having a productive day.

1. Do your best everyday.
2. Find an accountability partner.
3. Less TV, More Action.
4. Create small manageable task. (Break down those big goals)
5. Do your best everyday. *I had to mention it twice*

Keep it simple and have a great day!