I was fortunate enough to meet Emma Beale, former Marketing Director of PepsiCo for a mentoring session this week. Emma is a totally inspiring mentor and made me feel extremely welcome to ask her anything. She even gave me a restaurant recommendation, which I will feedback on once I have tried it!
But this wasn’t why meeting Emma was inspiring. Emma has had a truly outstanding career, setting herself a clear direction and demanding goals; which she has continually exceeded. How has she achieved all of this? By recognising what she wants, staying focussed and writing it down. In today’s Web 3.0 world, we spend so much of our time blogging, posting, emailing and so on. But when you think about it, this is all so throw-away. It helps us get noticed, it lets us stay in touch and it means we can do everything at a quicker pace. It’s great. But the problem with this is when do we actually stop and take the time out to think about what we want to achieve and document this for ourselves. They always say writing something down helps you remember it. Telling a friend by email or adding it to your profile doesn’t seem to have the same gravitas some how.
Since we started the Marketing Academy back in May, defining our vision has been a key topic, but after meeting Emma, I really feel the time is right for me to start defining mine. Like Bev has said, this isn’t an easy or quick task but I will be consciously taking some time out in the next few weeks to think about What it is I want, When I want it and How I can get it. And I’m going to sit down with a good old-fashioned pen and piece of paper so I can’t click a mouse and it vanishes into the ether where I can forget about it.
Emma’s life has changed a lot from when she started her career in Marketing, her priorities have changed and her passions have too, but one thing remains constant, Emma’s drive to get everything she can out of life. If my Vision means I can achieve even half of what she has, that will be quite something.
Other key pieces of advice from Emma:
- Have fun – and have the guts to walk away from something if you are not enjoying it.
- Take every opportunity you can to get yourself noticed and get yourself recognised.
- Have a goal of where you want to be and when.
- When taking a risk, write down the pros and cos and think about “so what?” for each of these. Often the risk isn’t as big as you think it is.
- Talk to other people, people you trust and whose opinion you value.
- Understand your weaknesses and surround yourself with people who are strong in your weak areas. You’ll quickly learn from them.
- Having an awareness of who you are is more important than trying to change who you are. Be confident and be true to yourself.