In the first of a monthly column on B&T, Gabi Price (pictured), ARN’s digital partnerships manager, talks about the role of mentors and industry leaders in her career and how they helped her make the most of her talents.
I’m like a knowledge-hungry sponge, always ready to soak up advice from those around me. This unquenchable thirst for knowledge has been my secret sauce in the world of media.
From the nuggets of wisdom dropped by guest speakers at NGEN events to the guidance offered by the IAB Australia Mentorship Program – even the workplace tips shared by the seasoned pros at ARN – I’ve collected some seriously epic pieces of advice along the way. Here are three of my favourites:
1. “No one cares about your career as much as you do.”
I heard this during a performance review with my manager. At first, I was surprised; isn’t that what a manager is supposed to do? I had this idea that everyone was watching my every move and that so long as I worked hard promotions and raises would just ‘offer themselves up’ to me… I soon realised that taking control of my own career was both scary, but also seriously empowering; proactively discussing growth opportunities and taking ownership of my career progression allowed me to guide my own path rather than have it dictated to me.
This realisation marked a turning point in my career journey. While mentors and managers can advise and support, ultimately the progression of my career rested on my shoulder. Don’t get me wrong – it was also on me to work hard, to set goals, to seek opportunities and to make sh*t happen! However, when it comes to cashing in on all that hard work, speak up for yourself.
2. “Act with the confidence of an expert but the curiosity of a novice.”
This simple yet effective piece of advice is something I still remind myself of regularly. It reminds me to ride that knifes-edge that sits between self-assuredness and arrogance. Take up space and assert your presence, put forward your ideas, never be afraid to ask questions, and never be too proud to learn a better way of doing something.
3. “Work towards finding what makes you tick as a person, then strive to do more of that.”
Taking an audit on your career can be both daunting and eye-opening. I was given a self-reflection task of deciding which parts of my job brought me joy, which frustrated me, and which elements scared me (in a good way). At the risk of sounding like Marie Condo, this process did help to cement which parts of my career make me tick so that I could steer my career towards that goal.
This advice is a reminder that your career should align with your passions and values. When you’re doing work that resonates on a personal level, it’s not just a job, it’s a fulfilling journey. It energises and fuels your motivation to excel.
As cringy as it can sound, that ‘take charge of your destiny’ theme has truly been a game changer for me. As a result, I’ve forced myself outside my comfort zone to make things happen in this wide and wild world of media. So, if you’re ever in doubt, remember that you’re the captain of your own career ship and it’s up to you to steer it towards greatness!
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