Today is my first day at EVOTEK. I am excited to have the opportunity to serve a new community, a new group of employees, and a new group of customers. I am in my favorite part of the world, San Diego, California and attended my first meeting in jeans and flip flops. What a different image than the executive I once sought to be and, for awhile, became.
As a young professional entering the tech world, with nothing under my belt but pure ambition, I aspired to be an executive. You know the ones: corporate america, big organizations, board meetings, big pay, private planes, always in the news. The really important people, right? I worked nearly 20 years towards that goal. Most recently, I served as GM of a major region for a large software company. I had responsibility for employees in many countries, multiple offices, several cross-functional teams. I was a corporate representative living abroad, speaking to the employees, customers, and the press on how our company was leading the digital transformation. We turned our business into the fastest growing part of the company.
Being an American executive living abroad was the most valuable personal and professional experience of my life. I love being the leader of a big team. I love being in front of a big audience. Not because of the power. Not because of the control. What I love is the idea that I can offer a suggestion, a thought, or some catalytic inspiration that could impact or change someone’s career. Along the way, I learned my passion is for leadership and serving, and it doesn’t have to look like my younger self’s description.
Leadership is the most important job for any organization, one that needs to be wielded with care. Notice I didn’t say leadership was the “hardest” job. I wouldn’t dare insult my teams, those who actually do the hardest work. But this distinction is what’s important to make. Leaders often forget whom they serve.