I truly love public speaking on topics that excite me--everything from digital content strategy to internet memes--and I could talk on the phone with friends for hours. Despite these traits, I actually have very real social anxiety.Read More
It sounded so nice that it became my go-to answer for my professors, strangers at cocktail parties and potential employers when they asked the "Where do you see yourself in five years?” question. I had just spent four years basically living in the communications department at my school, stockpiling my resume with internships, fellowships and awards, and there was no doubt in my mind that this was my goal and what I wanted to do for the rest of my life.Read More
Over the past two years, I’ve spoken with multiple women about their "typical day" and how they "do it all," but there was one tip I had been missing that became the secret to my productivity hacking.Read More
One year ago, I was 22 years old and I was 100 percent ready to finish undergrad, but I had no plan set to start this new chapter. Now, after one year in the “real” world I can say that this fresh start is filled with so much opportunity that all incoming graduates should be excited!Read More
For as long as I can remember, I would compare myself to others around me and always feel inferior.
Networking can be a waste of time if you don’t know which influencers you want to rub elbows with, and how they can contribute to your business.Read More
When creating a personal brand, you have to think of yourself as a company. And every company has a mission statement. Even we have a mission statement. Write down all the things you stand for and keep it as a reminder for the times when things get tough.Read More
A job is a pertinent necessity for survival—the bills need to be paid, and the nails need to be on fleek.Read More
Do you remember being 18 and worrying that you didn’t have an answer when people asked you what you were going to do with your life?Read More
Remember how the teachers told you to stop, drop, and roll during a fire drill practice in grade school? Well, what if I told you that drill could be applied to relieving stress?Read More
Whether you're new in the office or you're looking for a promotion, being an asset to your company is something you should always strive for. Going the extra mile at work or making an effort to anticipate tasks that are important to your boss will make all the difference. Here are a few ways you can stand out in your workplace, and be the employee everyone wants.Read More
The glorification of success often overshadows a very important question we should be asking ourselves – what do we really want?Read More
I had to make working on my novel my second full-time job and a top priority. I hardly went out, and put writing before a lot of things. Thank goodness I’m single because I'm sure my boyfriend would have left me by January. Did I also mention I gave up coffee for Lent while finishing the novel? Even now, as I’m in the editing process, I am forcing myself to make a schedule, because I have to keep the momentum going. I’m encouraged every day by my friends and family who say they can’t wait to read it, or say they’ve never met someone who actually finished a book. I’m also encouraged by the fact I made one of my dreams come true, one bite at a time.Read More
We know during the day our time is committed to other responsibilities, but it can be difficult to focus on those and ignore the siren song of a great new idea.Read More
Show genuine interest in getting to know your coworkers. Ask how their weekend was or what they’re reading for their book club this week. They have a life outside of work, too. Creating a culture of value within your workplace is one of the most important factors in being happy on the job, and you don’t have to wait for upper management to start that trend.Read More
In my role as a corporate trainer, one of my responsibilities is to provide our entry-level salespeople the opportunity to have some exposure to senior management. Earlier this summer, “Coffee Chats with Carly” was born: a weekly session where new sales employees call in via Google Hangouts from offices spanning coast to coast, and even north of the border. I joke around with the attendees and call it my very own talk show. As with any talk show, I have special guests come almost every week and share their career background and words of wisdom to people just starting their own careers.Read More
When I was a little girl, I was fearless. Whether playing basketball on the street, speaking my mind, or wearing whatever I deemed fashionable, I felt invincible. Yet, as I grew older, my fearlessness was soon tested by teachers, peers, adults, and colleagues alike.Read More
I hate to be the one to break this to you, but the old saying about sticks and stones is a big lie. What people say to us affects us and the same goes for what we say to ourselves. When we wake up, we immediately start an internal conversation that, good or bad, will influence our day.Read More
Whether you’re years into your career or just graduated from college last month, it may seem like there’s a lot of space between you and where you ideally want to be. Worse still, it may seem like there’s no discernable path from where you’re standing at this very moment to where you want to be. But don’t fear - enough successful people have sworn that anything is possible for me to believe it.
Imagine the job of your dreams. Think sky-high. Shoot for the moon. Don’t hold back. If you want Anna Wintour’s job, all you have to do is say it. The thing about dreams is that no one can help you get closer to them if you keep them to yourself. Telling people also makes it easier for your support network to encourage you when you need it. As Jay-Z says, closed mouths don’t get fed! So get out of your own head, put words to it, and start talking about what it is you really want.
That’s when you can begin to work backwards to plan how you’re going to get there. Believe it or not, this works even if there’s no official title for the job or if you only have a vague idea of what that is.
Abstract ideas work just fine as goals. For example, Richard Branson may have known that he loved music and wanted to help make it more accessible to young people before he opened his first Virgin Music store. He may have dreamed of getting into the travel industry when he was young. He may have even just known he wanted to be a businessman someday. The Virgin empire didn’t exist until he created it - he just pursued his passions and steered toward the things that interested him and sparked his curiousity. But he knew what he liked, and that’s the best place to start.
By giving yourself a goal, even if it’s vague, you’re giving yourself a destination to draw a map to. There’s a good chance you may just end up creating your own job- who knows! Whatever your goal, break it down into smaller goals that you can then work into your daily life.
Think of how your interests can be applicable in a professional setting.
If you have an artistic side but feel that you could never make a living as an artist, consider graphic design. If you love meeting new people, this could translate into some rockstar sales skills.
For me, it was writing. I knew every company needed a PR/Communications person and journalism was getting harder and harder to survive in, so I’d have to tweak my skill set to land a job.
Interests are still worth pursuing even if they don’t seem like they’d be useful at the office. When I graduated, social media marketing wasn’t really a thing yet...but it sure is now! And my odd knowledge of movie quotes and song lyrics has a use. Same goes for those witty ladies who write the email subject lines for The Skimm.
Figure out who you admire.
Make up a list of entrepreneurs, brands and companies you admire. Try to zero in on what it is they have in common that you like. What aspects of their personalities would you like to integrate into your work style? What are they known for? What would you like to be known for? Having something to look up to can help you sift through what’s most important about your goals.
Keep an eye out for opportunities.
Get on mailing lists for your favorite companies and organizations that support them, like the Council of Fashion Designers of America if you love Tory Burch.
Don’t be afraid to send out cold emails to people who you think might be able to dispense great advice to you based on their experiences. Look for conferences in your industry. You may just find that paying a few hundred dollars for invaluable contacts are worth it. For example, if you’d like to work for a travel company, look at travel conferences like the Women in Travel Summit.
Put yourself out there.
On the flipside of looking for opportunities is the option to let opportunities find you - by putting yourself out there. There seems to be a new social media channel popping up every year or so, and it’s easier than ever to get a website. You never know who will be up at 3 AM wandering the internet, so get yourself a presence there!
Showcase past work that’s relevant to what you’re looking to achieve and write a killer “About Me” section. Blog if you have the time. It’ll show that you’re driven and can be your own project manager. Guests posts are a wonderful way to make new connections and get your voice heard.
Check in regularly.
Act like your own career coach. Sit down and assess yourself once or twice a year and think about how far you’ve come. This will help you stay pumped for the journey ahead despite any setbacks you may experience along the way.
If you feel yourself starting to deviate from mini-goals you’ve set, or just feel your overall goal slipping further from your reach, give yourself an honest assessment and think of what you can do to get back on track. Remember the phrase all roads lead to Rome - some detours can be good for you! What matters most is if the effects of a decision feel good for you.
Knowing what you want out of your career and, on a larger scale, your life, will give you a huge advantage over those who’ve never seriously considered it. Think of it as a way of adjusting your sails rather than letting the wind blow you in whatever direction it chooses.
Often, I find that my exaggerated or irrational feelings start to dissipate as I write.Read More