Get Elected to the Career of Your Dreams: Lessons Learned from the Candidates

by Evans, Marshawn Monday, January 12, 2009
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I don't know about you, but I'm still on a high from this historic election! This is certainly an exciting time for our country. We saw a lot of firsts! The first female vice presidential nominee and of course, the election of the first African-American to the Oval Office. It was electrifying to see people around the country unite, and become intimately involved in the political process. Watching the level of enthusiasm and raw emotion that people had throughout the country not only inspired me, but caused me to think about how President-Elect Barack Obama emerged from humble beginnings to become President of the United States.

President-Elect Obama was raised by a single mother. He was by no means wealthy, and did not necessarily have a lot of opportunity or resources, to become President. However, he was able to build what is probably the most dynamic political campaign in history. There are a lot of career building strategies that women can take away from watching the campaign unfold this year.

I wanted to share a few lessons from the election that I believe will help you on your climb up the ladder of success:

Number 1: HAVE A VISION. Knowing exactly what you want to accomplish is necessary if you want people to buy into your vision and support you in reaching your goals. One of the things that successful political candidates do is spell out a vision in a way that inspires and attracts people. A strong vision becomes magnetic. People are then attracted to what it is that you're trying to accomplish. If you don't have that vision, it will be very hard to get people to support you.

Number 2: COMMUNICATE with CLARITY, CONSISTENCY, AND CONVICTION. There are three dynamics to strong business communication: clarity, consistency, and conviction. When you speak clearly, you help people to further understand the purpose of your vision, and your path for getting there. The more you communicate with clarity, the more confident people are in your ability to lead.

Consistency in business communication is important because people want to know that you are genuine - that you are who you say you are and that you are going to do what you say you're going to do. One of the things that helped President-Elect Obama was that his message, for the most part, stayed the same. His consistency inspired confidence in his ability to lead, and led him to the Presidency.

Lastly, communicate with conviction. As women, sometimes we tend to be self conscious about our word choice when speaking. The truth is that people will remember the level of passion with which you speak far more than the level of precision. When you look at the speeches of all of the candidates, I guarantee you that you cannot remember 90% of what any of them said! But you can remember 100% of the level of passion that they had when they spoke. Impressions are largely a product of demeanor and how you sound. Communicating with conviction is a strong business asset.

Just to recap, build and enhance your career by having vision and communicating with clarity, consistency, and conviction. By integrating these lessons from the election into your daily life you can get yourself elected to the career of your dreams.


©2008 Marshawn Evans