If you have spent many years at an organization especially if the company is large and has an overwhelming personality…you’ll have to accept you tend to minimize yours along the way.
I spent 29 of my 37 years of experience in two large global organizations. Don’t get me wrong I’m ecstatic to have been associated with those organizations. I’m proud of the work I did for them and how they hosted me, supported me and helped me built the person I am today. But I must confess I sent a lot of who I am into a small inner compartment to be able to “fit in” better and be successful. For that to happen, I needed to be “like the ideal profile of that organization”. In the process , without doubt, the personality of that corporate identity partially shadowed mine.
It happens so innocently. You have an innovative idea, a project you want to take in a specific direction…but your boss disagrees, the timing is not right, it will never be approved…and so you file it in a place you’ve likely named “ideas”, “innovation”, “creativity” or “for the future” in your computer. Oh, and must I remind you that you did sell your intellectual production to the company paying your salary. Those are no longer your ideas, they’re the organization you work for – whether or not they’re approved.
It’s been almost a year since I “amicably separated” (not divorced) from the corporate world. This time has allowed me to find traces of myself I had forgotten existed. I can focus in the activities I’m good at and want to do and not simply on the tasks that are delegated to me. I can express my thoughts whether I’m selected or not for a project and whether or not my ideas are implemented. There’s no boss I need to pretend to agree with and definitely, my performance review is not impacted.
I now find the time to dream of what helps clients and prospects in a creative manner and not only what someone else prefers I introduce. I give myself fully to others, let my thoughts come out, expose ALL of my ideas. I can allow all of this intellectual productivity to flourish freely for the benefit of my clients.
I have no ceiling to dream, to be creative, to position my ideas, to make my contributions in a different way. I am me…