This career coaching post originally appears in my Work In Progress blog for Forbes.com:
Julia Goldin is global chief marketing officer and EVP at Revlon, Inc, where she oversees all marketing activities and product innovation. Goldin has over 20 years of experience in consumer packaged goods, including senior executive positions over 13 years at The Coca-Cola Company. A native Russian, Goldin has lived and worked in Russia, the United Kingdom, Japan and the US. I had the pleasure of hearing Julia Goldin share success strategies for career and life at a talk for Step Up Women’s Network:
It’s all up to you — Believe in a limitless ability to evolve, change and learn.
Goldin recounted a story of a protégé she mentored in Japan. This soft-spoken woman was a rising star in a country with few female executives. Goldin credits the success to this woman’s willingness to break assumed cultural limitations, try new approaches, and ask for help. The protégé believed she could evolve, change and learn and was therefore able to carve out her own success despite her environment.
But look for external support — Don’t be afraid to go elsewhere for it.
On the other hand, you still need to be aware of your environment, particularly company support and opportunity. Goldin herself decided to leave her first role and instead join Coca-Cola because the other company couldn’t provide the international scope she wanted for her long-term career. International was not within their business priorities, so she wasn’t going to change that just for her benefit. Goldin reminded the audience, “Don’t just stay to prove a point.” Confirm that the company can and will give you what you need.
Set a vision and inspire – Find ways to get your ideas embraced by people
Asked about a single skill required for career success, Goldin highlighted the ability to deal with different audiences, to have the courage to stand up with your ideas, to set direction, and to get support from others.
Understand that most fears are acquired – Therefore, you can unlearn them
On the issue of self-confidence, Goldin pointed out that only two fears are natural — falling down and loud noises. All other fears are learned, and therefore, you can unlearn them! Goldin emphasized public speaking as a must-have skill and strongly recommended that aspiring executives overcome any public speaking fears.
Prioritize, delegate and trust to balance work/ life – You can’t control everything
On the subject of balancing family with a demanding job, Goldin talked candidly that things will not go perfectly. Be proactive about asking for help, learn to delegate, and live with how other people will do the things you give them.
As we kick off 2013, many people will include career advancement in their resolution list. Goldin shares excellent tips for all career stages. What will you work on? Do you have a limitless belief in yourself? Do you know if you have your company’s support? Can you generate buy-in from others for your vision? What fears will you overcome? Where will you ask for and accept more help?