Friday, February 02, 2007

Professional Renewal

I've been trying to blog about arbitrary, random stuff the past few weeks to take my mind off of things that have been bothering me at the office. But it hasn't been working so I'm just going to blog about it and move on.

I try to leave my work at the office, but the truth is that I have become engaged to my career. And soon, I expect that I'll be married to it. And proud to be. I feel good about my job. It's an emotional high to be honored, grateful and proud to be a part of the digital advertising team for a renowned company.

I don't often carry every little thing home and lose sleep, but when I make big mistakes, it follows me like a cloud. Well, some small mistakes have been accumulating over the last few weeks into some major errors - so much so that one of my bosses (the AVP one) finally scheduled a meeting with me at 9:30 a.m. today to discuss the issues.

My boss's first job out of college in New York City was an executive assistant position under a major executive at Atlantic Records so she has been where I am. During our meeting, she was a little reprimanding but not patronizing, firm but empathetic. First she wanted to know if there was anything behind my lagging performance.

I've been off lately, and I knew it. I've been hasty under the pressure of growing demands. Multitasking has become an increasing challenge, especially since I assist two people. She had seen a difference and wanted to know why. Then, she reiterated the big picture and why certain things are important.

She knew that I already understood. The reiteration was for her just as much as it was for me. She needed to be reassured that I got it. And she knew that I did. But then the meeting took an unexpected turn.

My boss paused briefly and then said to me, "I called my old boss at Atlantic Records and asked her to remind me what I was like when I was her assistant. I just wanted some perspective and to remember what it was like when I was new in the industry and working under a demanding woman ... And you know what, Katie? She described you."

"My boss and I had a similar conversation when I worked for her," she continued. "But she really put it in perspective for me when she once said to me, 'You have to make me look like a rock star.' So that is what I am going to say to you. You have to ensure that I am successful so that I can make the senior vice president and the president successful. And in turn, I'll make you successful ... You have to make me look like a rock star."

She knows I got it. And I'll start fresh on Monday.

1 comment:

X!ne said...

I have to say I really respect your boss though. So many bosses let things build up and don't say anything because they don't know how or let it slip into snippy comments. I'm glad you don't feel attacked and instead are taking it as constructive criticism.

I think it's positive that your boss acknowledges being demanding and is clear that she needs/wants you to make her look good. Most bosses want this, but often can't verbalize it. Wow, honest communications. Consider yourself lucky to have that in a boss -- it's so rare!! (I was also lucky to have a great first boss...but sadly never had one like him again.)

It would be interesting to read your reflections on what's been happening and why you think you have been "slipping".