BEING AN ASSOCIATE is an awkward stage in your professional life; and I think you would agree with me on this. It’s like being a sophomore in college: All of a sudden you don’t receive as much attention as those excited-about-everything Freshmen anymore; at the same time you are still not “experienced” or “qualified” enough to apply to those internships/programs specifically designed for Junior and Seniors.
A couple of examples in line with this:
- In Objective Settings you are expected to use language like “take a leadership role in this project”, but you should be very cautious with language like “managing the project or the team” – Right, if you (being an Associate) are managing the team, why do they need a Director?
- The VP who used to be your supervisor now reports to the same boss as you do. But while the VP is participating in management training programs, you are left behind doing the VP’s job.
- You are responsible for the quality of the work done by your Analyst but he/she doesn’t report to you, so most of the times, he/she doesn’t give a sh** of what you say or intend to have him/her do.
- Let me STRESS that all the above don’t happen often at all in my own case, but nevertheless I guarantee you this is quite universal otherwise.
I consider myself as lucky to be on this assignment overseas. Read more…
I really want to hear your insights on how to follow up with people I just met with such as alumni or high profile people. After the first acquaintance, I usually don’t know what to say to them through email or phone since we barely see each other. At the same time, I’m afraid that too many emails of questions or holiday wishes would annoy them. But I want to make a good impression because I may need their help at some point. Would you please elaborate how you maintain the relationship with your contacts?
Thank you – N
Another great question from Ask Danye, you guys are really awesome awesome inspirations! And I want to reassure you that the very fact you are writing this email to me means you take initiatives and that you are on the right track: yes, you do need to reach out to people BEFORE you actually need help from them. And here’s how to do it:
- Make it extremely easy for them
- Keep it very short (the 3 steps)
- Watch your tone (some do’s and don’ts)
- Write it already
Make it extremely easy for them
Senior people are busy people, so if you want them to do just about anything in the world, you need to make it super easy for them. I recently coordinated with HR, Yale Alums at my firm, and Women Initiatives for an informational/networking/recruiting event with Smart Woman Securities, a women organization from Yale. I pushed very hard for the event to happen obviously since we don’t really recruit on campus, and there’s tons of coordination work. But I got affirmative response from EVERY SINGLE person I reached out to and everyone is super excited to help me, even Harvard alums!
Another periodic Chinese blog of mine, in response to a movie based on my very generation, emotionally deep; excuse me if you don’t read Chinese.
Aside from the release of Verizon iPhone 4 and another round of big snow in New York, there is something else that has flooded the internet these days: Ms. Amy Chua’s Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior article on WSJ.
I have to say I like this article. I admire Amy’s honesty and audacity to even talk about things in such controversy that many Chinese are familiar with but may be totally unimaginable to other cultures. I am intrigued and impressed by her witty (at times funny) language and detailed examples, and I mean who would not be?! Especially when you read such a tagline – Can a regimen of no playdates, no TV, no computer games and hours of music practice create happy kids? And what happens when they fight back?
However, as much as I have personally lived through many experiences Amy has explicitly described in her article, and as much as I can only nod through her 3 points that by large have differentiated Chinese parents from other parents, I have sadly come to an conclusion that there are at least two fundamental flaws in the very foundation of her arguments:
1) Happiness and success do not necessarily correlate to each other, especially when you define success in such a narrow way.
2) Ending your parenting story when your kids are 15-ish is probably quite pre-mature. What may have worked for a 7-year old does not mean it will work the same for a late teen.
I have kept blogs in a variety of places before and this is the first and only time the website sent me a stats summary with such details for the bygone year. For the constant thrive to optimize user experience and the degree of dedication, I want to first thank WordPress for offering me, and many other bloggers in this world, an intimate place to pursue our passions, to share our curiosities, and to develop a legacy.
I also want to take the opportunity to appreciate every one of you who has stopped by my blog over the past year. For those who have commented on my posts, cheered for me on my facebook walls, left a message to me on LinkedIn and Gtalk, followed me on Google Reader, or mentioned my blog to me face-to-face, I want to thank you for being my constant motivation and inspiration. Your encouragement means the world to me.
Started in mid-April 2010, the blog had 70 new posts and was viewed about 21,000 times over the course of 2010. Not bad for the first year I have to say. Thanks for sharing this with me.
Here are my Top Posts of the Year:
This was an introduction email on career opportunity that I have been waiting for. As I know most people are still struggling on how to effectively network and communicate, I figured it was a good idea to share the email and my interpretation with you.
5. The easiest thing in the world is to say good things about other people.
Without even seriously meaning it. But it’s so easy, and you see the results. It doesn’t cost you anything, but it makes everybody happy. It really should be something natural to you, because everyone else is doing it too.
But you must be stupid if you don’t know WHY other people are doing it, especially if you are the “target” of the praise. Some people might seriously mean it, and I have every respect for those being honest and genuine with their compliments, but even if you are 10 times better than the compliments, why should they? Because you are a boss? You are a girlfriend? You are his date in this dance club? You are a customer browsing shoes? You are a competition?
Yay, so this is my first iphone video recording, and my first youtube upload! This Japanese guy was simply amazing, and this was just one of his many astonishing routines. I was lucky to have witnessed this with my own eyes at Union Square and I kept saying to myself, there are so many people out there doing things so interesting and so different from what we’re doing, but most of the cases we are not even aware.
Be curious, because life is still full of surprises.