The Mid-Career GPS Podcast

199: Building Your Personal Board of Directors for Career Progression

November 14, 2023 John Neral Season 3
The Mid-Career GPS Podcast
199: Building Your Personal Board of Directors for Career Progression
Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Ever wonder who's in your corner as you climb the career ladder? Let's uncover the answer to this question together as we talk about building your personal board of directors, an essential tool for your career progression. Through my experiences at the NextUp Rising Stars Conference, I'll guide you on how to carefully select these individuals who will play a fundamental role in sculpting your professional legacy and help you attain your ambitions.

Let's delve deeper into the criteria for picking members for your personal board. Trust and sound judgment are paramount in these relationships and I'll discuss why family members may not be the ideal choice. You'll get a glimpse into my personal board of directors and their invaluable support in my professional journey. And a special heads up - we have an upcoming webinar, "A Painless Three-Step Guide to Figure Out What's Next for You and Your Career in 2024." Be sure to join in and gain insight into effective strategies for managing your career trajectory.

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Speaker 1:

Like many mid-career professionals, you're thinking about what's next for your career. It's probably one of the reasons why you listen to this podcast. Like many mid-career professionals, you're probably a little worried about how it's all going to happen. While many job seekers leverage job boards and their network, I want to focus this episode on helping you build a personal board of directors. Do you have one? If you don't, that's okay. In this episode, I will teach you the importance of having a personal board of directors for your career development and your advancement, and give you a few suggestions about who should be on it and who shouldn't. I'll share how I build my personal board of directors and who's on it right now. Let's get started. Hello, my friends, this is episode 199 of the Mid-Career GPS Podcast. I'm your host, john Narrell. I help mid-career professionals who feel stuck, undervalued and underutilized show up to find a job they love, or love the job they have, using my proven four-step formula. Now, the idea for this episode and this concept of having a personal board of directors was something that I earmarked. To come back to this topic because over the summer, I had an opportunity to be one of the coaches for NextUp's Rising Stars Conference. Now NextUp is an amazing organization whose purpose is about advancing all women in business. As one of the coaches for the program, we work with mid-level mid-career professionals from across a variety of organizations. To kick off this three-day event, we heard from NextUp's VP of Learning and Partner Solutions, karen Jones. Karen talked about the importance of having a personal board of directors for your career, in the sense of how they can help you build your professional legacy and help you move and achieve the things that you want in your career. I remember after that keynote and I was working with my cohort they were all moved by this concept of who's in their corner, who are the people who are there to champion who they are and what they do. A personal board of directors can really advance your career. More than likely, you may have some people in your corner and you should have people in your corner but you may not be thinking of them in this construct of them as your personal board of directors. These are the people who you lean toward that are going to give you advice. They're going to give you guidance. They're going to be that critical friend or sounding board when you're looking to do something in your career. I want to be clear. They are not the people who you're always going to go and vent to and complain to. There's other people probably in your life for that, but they really are that sounding board for you. I want you to think for a minute. Who are those people? Who are the people that you would say without a shadow of a doubt? They are there in your corner whenever you need them. I remember throughout my career and it's one of those things when we think about proximity In a virtual environment it's not the same, but when I was teaching, typically those are the people who taught across the hall from me, or they taught next door to me. Or when I moved into more administrative roles, they were the people sitting in the cubes next to me, or they were in the office next door, or their office was around the corner for mine and I could knock on their door and be like, hey, do you have a minute? And vice versa. So I want you to think about who is on your personal board of directors. But before we move on with the episode, I want to take a moment and tell you about an upcoming webinar that I am hosting, starting on Thursday, november 16th. The webinar is called a Painless Three-Step Guide to Figure Out what's Next for you and your Career in 2024. So if you're thinking about making a career pivot or making a career move, you're ready to go for that internal promotion or create that next advancement opportunity Outside of your organization? I would love for you to come to this webinar and learn how to put this Painless Three-Step Plan together so you can get more information and save your seat for the webinar. On my website, johnnarrellcom forward slash webinar, I will link up to this in the show notes as well. I'm running the webinar three times. Every time it's going to be live Thursday November 16th, tuesday November 21st and Tuesday November 28th. I will have a replay available for a limited time after each webinar, but you do have to register to save your seat. So visit johnnarrellcom forward slash webinar for more information and secure your spot today. So, as you're thinking about your personal board of directors, here are some suggestions about who should be on it. First and foremost, they need to be people you trust. So, when you think about those people you trust, maybe it's a supervisor, a manager, an executive, maybe it is your boss. They might be a mentor, a sponsor. It could absolutely be your coach, could be somebody who's advocating for your career. It might be someone who I always love this term a critical friend. They're going to tell you like it is, even if you don't want to hear it, but you trust them in order to do that. It may also be your spouse or your partner. We certainly know that if we have someone in our life who is a spouse or a partner, to us that having their support means the world in things that we're doing, and so we often bounce ideas off of them. They're probably the people who we also vent to quite a bit about things, but nevertheless, they may be on your personal board of directors if you have somebody like that in your life. There is no set number about who I believe or how many should be on your personal board of directors, but the main criteria is that you trust them. You're going to come and talk to them about things that, admittedly, are going to make you vulnerable. You're going to go to them with questions and you're going to seek their guidance and advice on things, and that can absolutely make you feel a little vulnerable. Why would you do that with somebody you don't trust? So having their trust and being able to trust them is paramount in these kinds of relationships. So, that being said, who should you not have on your personal board of directors? Well, clearly, it's anyone who you don't trust. You shouldn't have someone on your personal board of directors who is not willing to, or will not, invest in your career. Additionally, I believe you shouldn't have someone on your personal board of directors who only thinks about themselves. You know that kind of person where you go to talk to them and they immediately shift the subject to something completely unrelated to what we just talked about, because they're only thinking about their own agenda. Do you know people like that? I know people like that. Do you know people like that? Right, and additionally, you should not have someone on your personal board of directors if you don't know them. You're not gonna just send a cold message or connection request to someone on LinkedIn or meet somebody at a networking event and be like hey, would you like to be on my personal board of directors? No, you need to take time to get to know them so you can build that no-like and trust factor with them and them for you, right? This is also one of those things where I will offer you that having family members, parents, siblings, relatives they may not be the best people on your personal board of directors for the sole purpose that they may and I'll say lovingly push their agenda because they feel that's what you need to be doing. Having a personal board of directors is that group that you can bounce ideas off of. You're looking for their input and they're also keeping their agenda at bay. They're not sharing their agenda with you in a way that they're doing it to overpower or influence your decisions. So, as I was preparing for this episode for you, it got me thinking again about who's on my personal board of directors. Well, in no particular order, I will tell you that on my personal board of directors, I break it down into three categories. So the first category I wanna share with you is my coaches. So I have multiple coaches, right? It wouldn't make sense if, as a coach, I didn't support coaching in general. But one of the people whom I added to my personal board of directors almost a year ago is my business and health coach and I appreciate him so much. His name is Craig Spear. He is a coach specifically for men over 40. And you can find him on LinkedIn. His Instagram handle is the spear method and he's just helped me so much and I always look forward to our work together because he is always holding my agenda with fidelity, just like I do for my clients. But the things that we're doing and the things he's helping me with, I'm noticing such a difference, and especially over this past month, as I had been dealing with a foot procedure and eye surgery, having him in my corner to just be there was absolutely wonderful. So, craig, I thank you, my friend, I can't wait to have you on the podcast at some point. We need to talk about that. But thank you so very, very much. So if you have a coach right, I strongly encourage you, add them to your personal board of directors. The second group are my colleagues, and these are not just people whom I'm connected to. This is a very intimate, tight circle of colleagues who are either in the space or similar spaces with me that I know. I could pick up the phone, drop them an email, send a direct message, and they're gonna respond and be like John, let's go, let's get on a call, let's exchange some messages, whatever that is. And I think about these people and they're absolutely. I would be lost without them. My life would be empty if they weren't a part of it, so I'm gonna give another shout out here. So my dear friend and colleague, susan Lemkole she is an accountability coach and Susan and I were in a mastermind when we were both going through coach training and we reconnected a couple of years ago and we had such a great time on that call that one of the results from that call was that we started meeting frequently and she and I get together every single week. We have a 45 minute call. It is solely for accountability and checking in what are you working on, what are you doing? Bounce ideas off of how can I hold you accountable? If you follow me on LinkedIn, more than likely you will see a reaction and a comment from Susan on my post. It's one of the things we do for each other. So if you're looking for some additional help with accountability, definitely check out Susan on LinkedIn. She's also got an amazing newsletter there as well, but Susan's one of those people that I just I truly appreciate and I'm so honored that she's part of my personal board of directors, and there are other coaches and colleagues whom are in that tight circle as well. So I share this with you because I want you to start thinking about who's on your personal board of directors. Who do you know that they're there for you, that you can pick up the phone and call them and they're gonna answer and they're gonna help you, and you're also there to help them as well. But the last person that I wanna talk to you about who is on my personal board of directors is my spouse, richard. We work into totally different industries and fields, and yet I know that when I'm stressed about something with work or in life, whatever it is, that he's got my back and vice versa. And that couldn't have rung more true over this past month, when I watched this man drop everything in his work life to take me to doctor's appointments and to the hospital and everything like that, and you might be sitting there going, yay, that's what spouses should do. They don't have to. They don't have to. They do it because they want to. And so I am honored that he is on my personal board of directors because, as a solopreneur, he's the one who comes home at night, and we will talk about our work today, as I will talk with him about some business decisions or things that I'm doing case in point, like with this webinar or launching my digital course. These are all these things that are out there that if it wasn't for him, there'd be an emptiness or avoid there, because he's not a part of that. So if you caught that a little bit, I've got a very special announcement coming about a digital course. You will hear about that on the webinar, but definitely stay tuned for more information on that. So in my notes here, it's my coach, my colleagues, my spouse. They are on my personal board of directors and I appreciate all of them. Especially as we come up on a time with the holidays and giving thanks and really reflecting on what this year has been. I feel that this episode is so appropriate to give you some space and time to think about who are the people on your personal board of directors, and I wanna leave you with this action step. If there is someone in your network, someone whom you work alongside of or in your life, that they are there for you as being that support, I want you to take some time over the next week or so and let them know, tell them how much you appreciate them, share with them why they're important to you and why you value their input, their guidance, their support, their expertise and share one thing about how this year they have helped you take a step in your career, whatever that may be. Having a personal board of directors and I'll go back to something Karen Jones shared at the conference this summer. They are a part of your network that helps you build your professional legacy that when it comes time for you to retire or close up shop and move on to that next chapter in your life, you are going to look back on them with such appreciation, fondness and love for the role that they played in your life. So build your personal board of directors, keep them close, keep them tight, appreciate them, but recognize them for the value they are continually adding to your career path and your life each and every day. All right, my friends, as one final reminder, make sure to go visit my website, johnnarallcom forward slash webinar, to save your seat for my free webinar that's coming up over the next few weeks. It's called a painless three step plan to figure out what's next for you and your career in 2024. You are going to leave that webinar with action steps that you are going to be able to immediately implement to start building that plan and take some steps towards creating your next advancement opportunity. So I look forward to seeing you there on the webinar. Feel free to share that with anybody whom you know. If this episode, or this podcast in general, is something you enjoy and it's meaningful and it's helpful for to you, I would be extremely grateful if you would simply tell someone about it, tell someone in your network about it, go into your podcast app, capture the link and share it with them. If you listen on Apple podcast, kindly leave me a rating and review. That would mean the world to me. Thank you so very, very much, and I am excited to bring you some really amazing interviews that are going to be coming up. So just getting back into the swing of things after my unintentional break, if you will, but I've got some really great conversations coming up, so I promise you there is an interview coming up, all goes well, in a couple of days, and I wish you all the best with that. So, that being said, let's wrap this up. You will build your mid-career GPS one mile or one step at a time, and how you show up matters. Make it a great rest of your day, thank you. Thank you for listening to the mid-career GPS podcast. Make sure to follow on your favorite listening platform and, if you have a moment, I'd love to hear your comments on Apple podcast. Visit JohnNarrowcom for more information about how I can help you build your mid-career GPS or how I can help you in your organization with your next workshop or public speaking event. Don't forget to connect with me on LinkedIn and follow me on social at JohnNarrowCoaching. I look forward to being back with you next week. Until then, take care and remember how we show up matters.

Importance of Personal Board of Directors
Building Your Personal Board of Directors