Upon graduating from university, I didn’t land that job in the marketing field that I desired. I didn’t realize it at the time, but this was a function of my commitment and confidence. Sending out hundreds of resumes and not being invited to interviews was a real eye-opener, and even more so, a real setback for me personally. It took some time, but I finally admitted to myself that I lacked both commitment and confidence, and I needed to overcome this. I forced myself to take steps to land that dream job with a “Fortune 500” company that I so desperately wanted.
The first step was simple: set the goal. The next step was a bit harder: understand that I required the proper mindset. I had to have a positive attitude and remain flexible while I strived to reach that goal.
I figured that landing the dream job wouldn’t happen overnight, and right then I just needed a job, period. With that mindset, I quickly landed a sales job with a chartered airline company. It wasn’t my ultimate goal, but it was a solid first step, and I committed to making the most of it. I gained valuable experience, and with that experience, my confidence grew. While not my dream job, this airline company took me into the world of sales—something I’d never done before.
I still hadn’t reached my goal, but I was on my way. I realized that we sell all the time. Selling isn’t just about products or services: it’s about how you present yourself, and how you present your ideas to others. I’d been selling my whole life but hadn’t realized it.
Once in this role, I made a commitment to learning everything I possibly could about sales. I devoured books, talked to anyone in the sales field I could, and focused my energies on achieving great things. I was now “all in,” learning about sales and becoming a true sales professional. This attitude gave me greater confidence as I began to experience greater success. The result: I ultimately landed a job with a “Fortune 500” company. Goal achieved!
One small caveat, however. The “Fortune 500” opportunity was in a sales representative role, not the marketing role which I thought I had wanted. But the sales job felt natural. Even though it wasn’t exactly my goal, it was the right thing to do. I made the commitment to this new job and myself, and took on the position with the same attitude as I had before; only now, I had much greater confidence because of my past experiences and success. I used this approach to grow my confidence over the years. It allowed me to meet many interesting and influential people, and it delivered windows of opportunity I never even knew existed.
But at this point of my career, I still felt like something was missing. I felt like I could be doing more. I had a desire to do more. And so, I made a list of what I felt I was good at, what others told me I was good at, what I enjoyed doing as a child, what my goals in life were, and what a dream job or role was. Simply put, it was my time for a hard-personal assessment.
This assessment is what led me to starting my own business. In fact, this decision required an entirely new level of commitment. One I am still committed to today.
A commitment to learning includes studying your profession or industry, your role, and your customers. During my experience, I learned even more about commitment, doing things with enthusiasm, and living up to every obligation. Then, I delivered more than what was expected. As my confidence grew, I began carving out a message about who I was, what I was about, what my capabilities were, and what I wanted people to think about me.
Live up to every commitment you make. Once you do that, deliver more than what is expected. That is true commitment. It is an ongoing process, and should drive you every day, as it continues to drive me.
It all starts with you being sold on yourself. Get set; things are just starting to heat up!