5 Secrets to Getting Promoted

The goal of any university’s career counseling centers is simple: ensure that students find a job after graduation.  But what happens after students get that first job?  What do they need to do to next?


Thank goodness the first company I worked for had a week-long orientation for new hires in order to help set us up for success once we started work.  Yet, despite the 40+ hours of training I sat through that week, the most valuable training I received came to me at the happy hour at the end of the week.  One of the managers gathered a handful of new hires around him to tell us exactly what we would need to do to move up in the company.

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How to find a mentor

Mentorship has been popping up in my life a lot lately.  In the past two weeks, I’ve attended the 10-year anniversary for Stanford’s alumni-student mentoring program, met with my own mentor of 16 years, had dinner with my mentee of 6 years, and volunteered to be a mentor at UC Berkeley’s Women Empowerment Day.

It was at that last event that one of the young women asked a great question:  In the absence of formal mentoring programs, how do I find a mentor?


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One key decision-making mistake to avoid

This is a public service announcement, courtesy of  my long-time friend to whom I dedicated this blog, Winnie.

“You should never have major conversations or make major decisions after midnight.”

Such a simple statement.  And such a great piece of wisdom.

Most people recognize that we shouldn’t make decisions when we’re drunk.  Duh.  Our judgment is impaired.  Yet it’s incredible how many of us will have no qualms about making major decisions at other times where our judgment may be just as impaired, such as when we need sleep.  Research has shown that drowsy driving is as dangerous as drunk driving.  It may be even more dangerous because people don’t even realize how dangerous it is, so they’re more likely to actually do it.  It’s about time we recognize the dangers of being drowsy.

Just say no to sleep deprived decisions.

Think about it.  When have you made a major decision at 2am?  In college, Winnie decided to cut her own bangs at some ungodly hour that only college students see on a regular basis.  Just because she felt like she needed to change her look.  You can imagine how she felt about that decision the following morning.  And for the six months it took to grow her bangs back out.  Amazing thing is, this happened three different times in her college career.  And they were all bad decisions.

Two years ago I thought I found the perfect apartment, which was big enough for my then boyfriend (now fiance) to move into whenever he felt ready.  I wanted him to weigh in on the decision, but we were both so crazy busy with work that the only time I could catch him was after midnight.  And what came of those conversations we had late at night about that apartment and the prospect of living together?  Nothing.  He was too tired to think straight.  What happened when we had the same conversation during daylight hours?  He realized that it was silly for me to move into my own apartment just seven blocks away from where he lived, so he decided to move in with me.  It’s amazing how clear a little bit of sleep can make your mind.

So today (or tonight), I’m asking you to join me in taking this pledge: It can wait until morning.

Because it can.  Really.  There’s a reason they say, “Sleep on it.”