How a simple weekly email inspired a change in career and life
Writer: Kelly Ground
About a year ago, I came across Friday Forward, a blog created by Acceleration Partners founder and Managing Director Robert Glazer. I started to read his updates every Friday and, because they were so inspiring to me, decided to check out who he actually was. After researching, I realized Robert had cultivated a culture that I wanted to be a part of and work in on a daily basis.
Before making this change, I was working for a company and, for all intents and purposes, I was successful. I felt respected at work, listened to, and appreciated, but I wasn’t fulfilled. I was the right person in the wrong seat. Robert’s Friday Forward posts helped me realize that I wanted to change where I was headed—both personally and professionally. So, 10 months ago, I left a very large retail company and joined Robert’s team. It has been one of the best decisions I ever made.
Since making the transition, I’ve had the opportunity to reflect on a few Friday Forward posts that inspired me and opened my eyes to some valuable perspectives:
• It’s not good to always be “right.” I know this may sound presumptuous, but in my other job, my partners acted as if I was always right and typically moved forward with my recommendations—even if they weren’t always the right directions to take. While a boost to my ego, this didn’t help me grow or get better in my position. So, when I first started at Acceleration Partners, I was a bit taken aback when I’d recommend a new approach or suggest a change to a client and they either didn’t agree with it or decided not to move forward with it. What they would do, however, is provide constructive feedback. This has helped me learn and grow and embrace the word “no.” In fact, it’s often an opening to better, more productive discussions to get to “yes.”
• In order to grow, we must be self-aware. We should all think of ourselves as constantly evolving. However, although we may be learning something, we may not necessarily be diversifying our knowledge and expertise. If we want to grow, we have to challenge ourselves and embrace the possibility of failure. It can be scary, but it is the best feeling when you get to that finish line and realize how much you have changed for the better.
• It’s about work-life integration, not balance. I now work in a fully remote environment, so we have employees who work from their home office, coffee shop, co-working space, etc., all over the United States and even internationally. Being able to work from home and no longer commute 2½ hours roundtrip has been truly life-changing for me. Now, I’m able to exercise four or five days a week, take my dog for a walk at 1 o’clock in the afternoon, and drive my kids to school and pick them up. There is nothing like being able to do work that you enjoy while also having control of your time and calendar.
If you’re like me and strive to diversify, grow personally and professionally, work with other people who will motivate and inspire you, and change your work-life paradigm, then I encourage you to take the leap on whatever path you are headed. Life is too short to question what you are spending your time on 40-plus hours a week.