There is a lot of talk about how to advance your career to the next level, but what if that isn’t your goal?
Not every woman or man in business has his or her sights set on being in the executive suite. And that is okay. However, what I do see as I travel the country meeting and working with professional women’s groups is their common desire to make a difference to create a larger impact.
Align with Impactful Work
If you are one of these professionals that want to align your work and energy to make an impact with the company, your community or the environment, you are not alone.
“We can change the world and make it a better place. It is in our hands to make a difference.” Nelson Mandela
Many professionals that I have met along the way are looking to expand their influence in their existing teams or to add external initiatives to enhance their areas of impact such as committees, boards, new programs or activities.
Do you think the work assigned to you matters? It usually does!
When assigned new work, be sure you ask some of these questions:
- What are the expected results of this project?
- What is the timeline?
- Who is already involved in this project?
- What are the interdependencies of this work within the organization?
- What is the budget?
- What known obstacles exist?
- Why is this project important to the company?
- What if this does not get done within the expected timeline and budget?
By gathering information about a project you will begin to have a clearer understanding of the value the results will bring to the company.
“Never doubt that one person can make a difference.” Ingrid Newkirk
Understanding the work assigned to you, how it fits into the company’s goals and how it can position you, your skills and
relevance for where you want to accelerate your impact next are important. Project assignment can be a critical piece of your professional brand and future path.
Chose Projects that Impact the Company
Be aware of how your projects align with both the company’s goals and your goals.
For example, if you are leading the project you will have more details than you would have if you are only working on a small piece of it. If you have 10 projects, and you only have a slice of work on each, it might be time to consider positioning yourself for a larger role on fewer projects.
Hopefully, you can leverage this information in your professional sphere to be more proactive as it relates to aligning with particular work assignments.
Spend some time thinking about how you position yourself for future projects that can showcase your ability, attitude, and value based on where you desire to accelerate your impact.
It’s likely others will guide you along the way, but you do need to drive your career in the direction you desire.
For more information on the process of aligning yourself with impactful work, I invite you to read my book, Accelerate Your Impact. The book offers details instructions, worksheets and examples of how other women have repositioned themselves to make a difference.
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- The One Thing Women in Business Need to Succeed
- Lead From Where You Are Now
- Managing Productive vs. Non-Productive Environments
JJ DiGeronimo — the president of Tech Savvy Women — is a speaker, author, and thought leader for women in tech and girls and STEM. Through her work, JJ empowers professional women and consults with senior executives on strategies to retain and attract women in technology to increase thought and leadership diversity within organizations.
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