6 Keys to Navigate the Winding Road to Change

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6 Keys to Navigate the Winding Road

What do you do when you’re given a blank sheet of paper and asked to re-engage/re-energize 5,000 employees in a way that’s never been done?

According to Julie Seitz, Director, Global Workplace Strategy & Operations, Coca-Cola, you use your transferrable skills.  This requires trust and resourcefulness: having a high level of trust in yourself – knowing that you have actionable skills to keep you functioning at a high level, while you learn new skills needed to drive success of the ambitious undertaking.

Last week, I had the privilege of attending a Hearst Lecture Series called: Navigating the Winding Road to Change, which focused on women executives sharing their insights on women and leadership.

Along with Seitz, also featured were:

Eve Burton, SVP, General Counsel, Hearst Corporation

Ellen Levine, Editorial Director, Hearst Magazines

Dr. Carolyn J. Stefanco, President, College of Saint Rose

From that, unfolded the following 6 keys to navigating change when the job seems bigger than you are.

6 keys to navigate the winding road to change in your organization:

#1 – It can be scary at the start

This isn’t necessarily a bad thing.  If you’re scared, that means you’re on your A game and you’re going to bring everything you have to the challenge.

#2 – Surround yourself with great people

Nothing great or worthwhile is ever done alone.  Determine who you need as your allies and who you need on your team.

#3 – Every business is in the relationship business

Form meaningful relationships.  Be an incredible listener.  Make people feel valued.

#4 – Be patient

Don’t get discouraged if what you’re working towards takes longer than you’d like. Know that your diligence will pay off.

#5 – Welcome all ideas

Inviting other perspectives allows your original idea to become even more powerful and collaborative.

#6 – Be persistent and hang on!

Many things will show up that you didn’t expect, things will go wrong, and you will have to course correct.  Stay the course and trust.

Tweet: Inviting other perspectives allows your original idea to become even more powerful and collaborative.

Answers to questions of gender equality and creating opportunities for women leaders in the workplace.   

When looking at how women can rise to the top, and how we can take ownership of creating change in our organizations, here are the top responses that can serve as a guide for all women leaders:

How did you rise to leadership?

  • Be good at your craft.
  • Choose your spouse wisely.
  • Use all of your energy.
  • Have sponsors over time.
  • Ask a lot of questions.
  • Know what you love to do.
  • See the journey as a gift.
  • Consistently make unusual choices.

What do you think has held women back?

  • We hold ourselves back by not making bold moves.
  • Not taking enough risks.
  • Thinking of yourself as the “woman” in the room.
  • Comparing our beginning to someone else’s middle.
  • Not working our network as well as men.

How do you foster relationships that might encourage gender equality?

  • We must partner with men.
  • Join “Moving The Needle: Advancing Women in Higher Education Leadership.”
  • Broaden your perspectives.
  • Pay attention to who you know and how you stay in touch with them.
  • Volunteer.
  • Be on Boards of Directors.

Have more suggestions for empowering women in your organizations? Post them below.

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