The path to leadership is certainly not always linear. Career paths can sometimes Zig when you want to Zag. Sometimes, it may mean taking lateral positions or even taking a step back, so long as the purpose is to take 2 steps forward. When it’s happening, it can be hard to see that you’re on a journey, and that the journey is unique to you.
In this Jam Session, I sit with leaders Melissa Manner and Heather Stitely. Both Melissa and Heather are Area Business Managers with a fortune 500 biopharmaceutical company, and they both have this in common; their leadership journey was not linear.
- Taking a lateral role or moving from a people leader role back into an individual contributor role is not moving backwards. It’s just moving you toward a different direction, that in many cases, moves you forward.
- Every decision we make, every role we move into, is a learning experience that will help us to move forward.
- When deciding your next career move, be open-minded to the potential you can gain from that experience.
- When considering different roles, make decisions that are right for you and will put you in a better position (skills and competencies) for the future.
- Find the right blend of formal leadership training while leveraging the resources around you, i.e., mentors, other manager’s experience, reflecting and learning from your own experience.
- It’s ok to show humility by admitting when you don’t have all the answers.