Leaning In and Embracing My Identity and Values for Career Alignment with Purpose
Posted by: Maryanne Piña
Your career success does not depend on you having a specific purpose or set of values. Instead, your success depends on aligning your purpose and values with those of the organization(s) you work in.
This is where my values began…
Dad was a strong & determined man!
I never remember him saying
These phrases weren’t part of his vocabulary.
Instead – it was a constant
“Mija” – daughter
“Get it done”
“Work hard & fight for what you want”
And as an adult, now I’m glad.
I didn’t know it then, but all Dad was doing was building my character.
Working Hard & Earning a Living: 1 Penny at a time
Dad had so many career experiences, from being a U.S. Marine Sergeant, Construction Superintendent, to attaining OSHA certifications and being a Safety Officer, but his favorite thing was carpentry. It’s no surprise then, that when I was seven years old running around his woodshop, and I asked how I could make money; he handed me a pair of goggles to protect my eyes and a little jar of Wood Putty. If you don’t know what it is – it’s filler to cover nail holes when you’re building furniture. He said “Mija, I will pay you a penny for each hole you cover”. I remember thinking, I just need to cover fifty holes by 1pm and wait for the ice cream truck to buy my own Flintstone’s Yabba Dabba Doo Orange Push Up ice cream… but my initial thought of 50 cents was quickly replaced by how much can I make today?
It took 30+ years to understand my core needs and embrace my identity and values.
What is most important to you? What people, places, or things bring out the best in you and generate positive emotions in your life? You may answer these questions in a myriad of ways—from family, money, and faith to success, humility, and service. These are your values and your fundamental life purpose.
In our LCA™ research, we identified Career Alignment with Purpose and Values a predictor for career success. Don’t hide your values; share them. Let your manager(s) and key stakeholders know what is essential for you, including the kind of working environment that will enable you to add the most value and be the most engaged. People tend to rally around those that are declarative and clear with what is important to them. If you are in an organization, this would be an excellent litmus test of whether you can express your values there or if you will need to find a new role, company, or work environment that is more aligned with your values.
I adamantly believe your career should be a clear expression of who you are and what is important to you.
And this is who I am / Yo Soy
I am Maryanne Piña Frodsham
- the daughter of Mexican immigrants,
- English as a second language student,
- border town – Rio Grande Valley kid,
- Mexican American,
- sister, mother, wife, friend,
- author, entrepreneur
- music lover, creative spirit, hiker
- faithful, risk taker, unifier
- resilient, passionate, innovative
- Latino workforce advocate
- & Beyond Grateful
“The people who stand before kings may look like they did it all by themselves. But in fact, they are invariably the beneficiaries of hidden advantages and extraordinary opportunities and cultural legacies that allow them to learn, work hard, and make sense of the world in ways others can’t. It makes a difference where and when we grew up. The culture we belong to and the legacies passed down by our forebears shape the patterns of our achievements in ways we cannot begin to imagine” (Outliers, 2008).
My cultural values remain and the life-changing lessons have led me to two rules, never to be broken:
- Rule 1: Lean in, embrace it all and stay true to your values and identity.
- Rule 2: If you are not sure for any reason, refer to Rule 1.
When the focus of our lives is on embracing our identity and values, Career Alignment with Purpose will follow.
Stay Tuned for the Yo Soy Campaign. Sign up here to stay informed.