Employee Experience, HR Community, Team Members
How important is your job?
It’s an intrinsically intimidating question. It is the question that starts gnawing at your headspace in high school (or earlier). For me, I struggled to answer it honestly. Because there’s a prerequisite question: “What do you want to do with your life?” Or even, “What do you truly enjoy doing?”
For a long time, I had no idea how to answer any of those questions. I had no polished elevator pitch response, or intrinsic calling turned career. I felt no need to evaluate my career through that kind of introspective lens. But that changed, and I wanted more. This is that very condensed story.
Like so many of us, I pursued a job right after college and immediately dug my heels into the fast-paced, very noisy employee benefits industry (at the time I didn’t know what a deductible really was). I loved the people I worked with and helping my clients and their employees navigate the healthcare space. Over the years my career spanned across different companies in the exciting world of insurance, brokers, technology, consulting, and problem-solving.
At first it was a great fit for me. It fed my insatiable appetite for a daily challenge, it was always fast-paced, and I had the opportunity to meet countless cool and interesting people. But the true breath of fresh air for me always happened when I sat down, eyeball-to-eyeball, with HR leaders, executives, and other people leaders. These were the folks at the forefront of helping their companies (ahem, their employees) become better.
It was energizing to have candid and sometimes hard conversations with my clients about their challenges, empathetically listen to their goals and aspirations, and then validate those into real-world plans of action to make them come to life. When my job allowed me to help clients think outside the box, it was a blast of energy that I couldn’t ignore.
As an unexpected perk, I had also become a teacher. I enjoyed when I was primarily an educator, and not simply a guide – and I happily took my spot behind the proverbial curtain so my clients could be applauded centerstage as the stars of the show.
That’s when those intrinsic questions about what I wanted from my career popped back into my head. I didn’t have some big cathartic moment, but as time went on, I knew I had to make a change. Enter IA, stage right.
I knew the team at IA was special because their goal is to teach clients how to “consultant proof” their business. For the longest time I had a very negative association with consultants. They were expensive, wore fancy suits, and had a predefined process…right? Not IA. They want to help empower clients. They care about the people on the other end of the webcam (or sitting across the table). I made it a goal to get to know IA and build a relationship that would help me join the team when the time was right. And thankfully, that time is now.
From day one, I was immediately drawn to the transparency and candor we have with our clients. This has always been important to me, so working with a team where these attributes are not only expected, but celebrated, was the cherry on top. I am now a part of a team that focuses on helping people help other people and loves elevating others as much as I always have.
I’m looking forward to making an impact with our clients alongside my new IA crew, using the skills I’ve been honing over the last ten years and applying them in a more direct way. I’ll have the opportunity to advise and coach our clients to make decisions that will have immediate and lasting impact on their organizations – and I get to do this work alongside a team who supports and elevates my work. I’m grateful to be a part of this work, and to finally have the answer to my own questions.