Leadership Series: If it’s to be, it’s up to me!
Today’s post in the Leadership Series is from Lynda Rose, Vice President of Sales and Marketing for Mary Kay Canada.
When I reflect on my career, I realize I’m incredibly blessed to have been in an industry that I have a passion for. Cosmetics has been in my blood – and my passion – for more than 30 years; first as a makeup artist early on and now in my current role as Vice President, Sales and Marketing for Mary Kay Canada. But what I quickly discovered in my career was that it was my involvement and work with women that inspired me.
I was blessed to have great female role models and mentors with me throughout my career. And although I never had the honor of meeting Mary Kay Ash, she’s by far my ultimate role model. In my current role, I spend a tremendous amount of time with the independent sales force and I love being able to work with them, mentor them and support them as women who are building businesses, lives … and making a difference. It’s the opportunity to watch a shy young woman join our Company and then blossom into a self-sufficient, confident leader that truly inspires me.
The lessons I’ve learned from my mentors have been invaluable to me throughout my career. There have been many but a few really stand out. First is the lesson that your biography – your history – is not your destiny. In life, we somehow become defined by the stories we tell ourselves. But so often, those stories are simply not true – and only serve to negatively color your outlook, your behavior and sometimes your choices. It’s essential always to remember that your past doesn’t determine your future. Your commitment, discipline and focus on your goals – and yourself – will allow you to achieve anything you desire. For me, my past would never have predicted that I’d be working with such a great company. But every decision I made, at every point, allowed me to arrive where I am today. It’s the decisions you make on a daily basis that allow you to move closer to achieving your goals and realizing your dreams.
Second, I learned early on that HOPE is not a strategy. Wishing, wanting and willing something to happen just doesn't cut it. You need a plan, a goal and a commitment to really make something actually happen. As Mary Kay always said “Plan your work and work your plan.” Will there be construction on the way to success? Yes. But it’s the detours and the bumps in the road that build character and teach you invaluable lessons.
We all know that the speed of the leader is the speed of the gang. We so often hear this from the independent sales force, but it applies to us as well in a corporate environment. Last year, I put that lesson to the ultimate test when I held a 13-show week in honor of Mary Kay. My sales were great, but the learning I gained – and the respect for and from the independent sales force, was truly invaluable. I walked in their shoes and in so doing, gained a true understanding of the struggles, frustrations and triumphs in their day-to-day businesses.
Finally, invest in yourself. Take time for you each and every day – and invest in your development and your future. What books are you reading? Who are your mentors? Who are you hanging around? Are you stepping outside your comfort zone in order to grow and develop? When you invest in yourself, there’s one ultimate winner – YOU! The benefits are immeasurable and priceless. Your family, your co-workers and the people around you will all benefit from your taking the time to believe in yourself and investing precious time in you – and in your future.
We’re blessed to be part of a Company that focuses on the growth and development of women. Whether you’re a part of the independent sales force or on the corporate team, you have the ability to grow and become whatever you set out to be. As Mary Kay said, “If it is to be, it is up to me!”