I am shameless …

In my last column I touched upon how one has to continuously keep learning and growing. Today, I want to share on how and why you need to be shameless in your pursuit. 

You have probably picked up new skills, tapped your network and are proactively searching. My question to you is – are you shamelessly pursuing what you want? You have to be all out there, chasing people, jobs, connections…whatever it takes. There is no shame in being persuasive. Job aspirants often stop at being persuasive. There is a certain inhibition attached here – the shame of being looked as someone who is shameless. But that is exactly what you should be – be shameless and focus on achieving your end goal. No one achieves anything by resting on their current laurels. You have to be out there following up leads and testing new avenues along the way. 

What does it take to be shameless? Here are some tips that you can start working on immediately:

Never stop looking

If you are a keen observer of the millennial generation, you will notice they are all the time looking for change. Job stability means little to them. They never stop looking. Growth, after all is about enhancing your ability to tackle complex issues and challenges. Be clear that you are seeking change because you want to do more, be more and grow more.

Act now

Do you recall the last time you attended a workshop/conclave/training and took down notes? What did you do with them? Did you even look at them again? To be successful in your pursuit for that next growth, take action and implement what you learn immediately. Even if it is a small action such as sharing with your colleagues your key learnings and takeaways. The quicker you act, more are the chances of you shaping your own career growth and trajectory.

Participate

When I say participate, it means going beyond mere attendance at meetings or discussions. It means actively asking questions, probing, debating, agreeing to disagree and voicing your opinions. Communicators need to be heard. Be seen. Be missed if not around. Attend events and conclaves. Create your own value. No one else can do this for you.

Remember what needs to be remembered

Our brains are bombarded daily by a blizzard of information. There is a limit to what it can uphold and retrieve at an appropriate time. Most of the information is compartmentalised as thrash and I don’t know about you, but I certainly have ‘selective amnesia.’ With so much inflow of knowledge it is important we remember what needs to be remembered and know what to do with it. Use that information at a critical juncture to invoke nostalgia, memories or strike up a new connect. You have to be shameless, remember.

Have an open mind

Easy to do? Nay! One of the most difficult things to embrace is new ways and new ideas. We are a victim of our own perception and biases. We love routine. We follow patterns. Our whole life in fact is a set pattern of behavior. Try changing one habit or inculcating a new one and you will realise how taxing it really is to do so. This means, we have to continuously work on ourselves to accept new happenings, alternate opinions and divergent views. Pay attention to how you think and work on yourself all the time to expand your mind and be more open.

Start with the end first

Now, you need to be shameless with yourself here. Ask of yourself what you want. You have to be brutally honest. Assess your strengths. Pin down that end goal first. Then start working backwards. What will it take for you to reach your goal? How can you fulfill your aspirations? Draw a roadmap of the journey that you will have to undertake to reach your end goal.

To conclude, go out there and be shameless! Talk of your ambition. Come across as singularly focused on your goal. Be relentless. Let go of your inhibitions and modesty be damned! The world belongs to the shameless.

Sarita Bahl
Country Group Head Communications & Public Affairs (CPA) at Bayer - South Asia
Over her three decades of professional experience, Sarita has held multiple roles across diverse industries, trade associations, MNCs and the not-for-profit.
An alumnus of Tata Institute of Social Science and the Swedish Institute of Management Program, Sarita specialises in stakeholder engagement, sustainability and communications.
She is passionate about animals, books and movies.

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