A 3-Step Action Plan for Making Great Things Happen this Year
I was on the phone with my friend, Dawn Andrews, when she said, “Moments in life can be magical, but nothing happens by magic.” I was struck by the simplicity and truth of this statement. I believe in all kinds of positive thinking, visualization, manifestation, prayer, motivational quotes, miracles, and luck. I love everything that makes you feel great and gets your mind prepared for success. As a matter of fact, I’ve had lucky and magical things happen to me my entire life!
I remember driving down Fairfax Avenue several years ago when a thought popped into my head: “I wonder if I could get a job where they pay me to be social?” BOOM, I received a call shortly thereafter saying a big-time executive wanted to meet with me about a new company he’d started. He specifically needed someone social to get the word out about his company’s services. Sounded perfect to me, so I went in for a meeting. When they were explaining the job, I said, “Wait, you mean you’re actually going to pay me to be social?”
I went in for the second interview with a piece of paper noting everything I’d require in that job (salary, start date, title, responsibilities, etc.). Would you believe they offered me EVERYTHING on that list? (Well, there was one exception: I wanted a VP title, but they were thinking SVP, so I ended up going with their much, much better idea!) I remember how good it felt and that it all started with a simple thought.
I’m not making this up.
Was this Magic?
We can speculate all day as to what and why this actually happened, but what I know for sure is this: this did not happen by magic, yet the experience was truly magical. Had I not spent eight years working at the then-William Morris agency (WME-Endeavor), I wouldn’t have been called. That is a fact. I never would have met the executive hiring; I never would have been exposed to the level of relationships required for the job; I never would have understood the complexities of the company. This opportunity would absolutely, positively have never happened without years of prior work!
If you follow me on Instagram, you’ll know that I chose a theme-word for the year, and that word is ACTION. All my life I’ve taken action. I’ve picked up the phone, followed my intuition, raised my hand, responded to emails, helped others, and shown up. That is ACTION.
2019 is time for all of us to have the jobs we want. It’s time for our dreams to become realities. It’s time for Action. Here, then, is a 3-Step Action Plan for upping your chances of making magical things happen this year.
1. Read Up/Listen Up
Read uplifting and positive books, trade magazines, blogs, social media, or anything else that lifts your spirits and helps form ideas about what you’d like to do. Really listen to yourself without judgement. What books are you reading? What movies are you watching? What content are you consuming? By paying attention to what you actually enjoy doing (as opposed to what you think you should be doing), you’ll get on the road to your dream job.
I’ll never forget a client who hesitated when telling me her favorite show was Dance Moms. She seemed embarrassed by it, yet it just so happened that I loved reality television, too! We bonded over The Bachelor, Real Housewives, and more. Had she played it cool and said she loved arthouse documentaries, she wouldn’t be working at ICM in Reality TV today!
Take the pressure off yourself. You don’t have to be super passionate. Just look for what’s interesting. It may be a book, someone you found on IG, your favorite professor, or your internship supervisor. Surround yourself with successful people, and target the opportunities that you think you want. Ask people who already have jobs you’re interested in if they’ll have an informational meeting with you. Ask what they do, how they did it, and how you can do it, too.
2. Speak Up
Your career dreams should not be a secret. Tell people what you want to do, and be ready for when the right person in the right position needs you. Think of people like browsers: they can only pull up what you type in. So tell your classmates, colleagues, friends, parents, or anyone else, that you want to work in visual effects, costumes, sports, or whatever it happens to be. The more specific you are, the stickier the idea is.
3. Show Up
If you’ve ever heard me speak, you’ll know that I’m an introvert who presents as an extrovert. People think I’m super gregarious and social (which is true in business), but sometimes it takes great courage for me to show up at a purely social event. It sounds crazy, I know, but I battle my own insecurities, and I’ve had to really exercise my bravery muscle to just show up at parties.
This year, I’ve adopted the mantra: If there’s no compelling reason to say no, your answer must be yes! I employed that when I was invited to a New Year’s Eve party. And would you believe it’s where I chatted with the fantastic publicist for whom I posted a job opening yesterday? A career opportunity I was then able to pass on to the MyGradsGetJobs Community—and all because I simply showed up.