Happy New Year! We at PWWS are so excited for 2019 and all of the great things we will learn together as we explore our theme for the year: “Your Professional Journey’s Next Level.” During the first quarter of the year we will explore ways to build our skills, knowledge and understanding setting the stage for each of us to experience our best professional year ever!
Kicking us off in January is our speaker Natalie Sanders, Founder and Lead Consultant at Professional Business Cultures. Natalie’s mission is to raise the level of professionalism in every workplace. Rather than focus on prohibiting behaviors, Natalie focuses on promoting professionalism.
Like most of us, Natalie’s career has been a winding journey. She has been a partner in a highly respected law firm and in-house counsel/operations manager of a leading regional provider of technology and data management services to county governments. Natalie founded Professional Business Cultures in 2018 to make a difference in America’s workplaces.
To give you the opportunity to get to know Natalie a little better we did what we women are so good at – we asked her some questions! We wanted to know about some of the things that have made an impact on Natalie and the lessons she has learned along the way. Here is what Natalie had to say.
I was never much of a reader. As a law student and then a lawyer, much of my professional time was spent reading or writing. The last thing I wanted to do was read for “pleasure.” Then, I discovered Audible, and a whole new world opened up to me. I am an avid audio “reader” now. It’s shocking how many books I can devour by just listening while doing household chores and driving short distances. I recommend to anyone who has trouble finding time to read books, especially professional development books, try audio books!
As for a specific book I would recommend, it would be “How to Talk to Anyone: 92 Little Tricks for Big Success in Relationships” by Leil Lowndes. I preface my recommendation of this big with the acknowledgement that there is a lot about the book that I do not like, primarily relating to some of her tone and the names she gives some of her technics. But I took away many, many useful tidbits from this book.
I’m an introvert who used to dread networking events. I now often look forward to them, and my discomfort with the effort it took to network is gone. The networking tips from this book were crucial learning for me as I dove in and started my own business. Anyone who struggles with or just gets a little exhausted trying to be sincere and network should check this book out and take from it what fits for her.
2. What is the best piece of advice you ever received?
In my personal life, the best piece of advice I ever received was from another mom while I was pregnant with my first child. She said to me, “Never forget what your job is as a parent. Your job is to teach your child to live without you as soon as possible.” That advice was disconcerting as I was preparing to welcome my first little bundle of joy. But I learned quickly what she meant. By age two, my daughter was getting out of bed to an alarm clock and making her own breakfast (from a cooler I left on the floor every night with a pre-poured bowl of cereal and cup of milk). I have loved and cherished my daughters, but they have grown into independent, confident young women because I followed that advice.
In my professional life, the best piece of advice I ever received was from a senior lawyer at Brooks Pierce. He said, “You can do everything, just not all at the same time.” There are seasons in life. During different seasons, we have to make decisions and prioritize things in a ways that fit the season. That advice helped me step away from a law firm and work I loved because the season in my life needed more flexibility than the position I was in could offer. That advice also helped me start my own business and renew my career path when a new season arrived that didn’t need the same level of flexibility. We just have to be open to recognizing when life’s seasons change and we can’t be afraid to do “everything” when the time is right for it.
We hope you’ve enjoyed the opportunity to get to know Natalie and we look forward to seeing you on January 9, 2019 at BB&T Ballpark to hear more. See you then!
*Please note parts of Business 40 are closed so you might have to take an alternate route to get the the Flow Club. Access is available via Business 40 to Peters Creek Parkway, from West 1st downtown and directly from the South on Peters Creek Parkway.
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