Ival Grant-Williams, Director, Strategic Financial Analysis, New York City Department of Health, New York, NY
I knew I was ready for a career transition, but I wasn't sure what I needed. I wanted to figure out how to move forward in such a way that my next position would be a leadership position that I could grow in. I wanted a position where 10 years from now, I can look back and feel that I’m a subject matter expert.
The mechanics of the job search was not what I was looking for – I didn’t want to review my resume and cover letter and go through mock interviews. But I felt in my gut that I needed some type of help, even though I couldn’t articulate what that help would be.
I turned to Sharon to help me think through the changes I was embarking on. And our engagement was awesome, it was wonderful!
Sharon helped me to hone in on my skills and identify my strengths. You know, a lot of times we focus on our weaknesses, what we need to be better at. Sharon did a phenomenal job of helping me figure out what my strengths are, and what types of work would really allow me to leverage my strengths so that I can feel successful.
Sharon would open every conversation with, “So what do you want to get out of this session?” She would always remind me that it’s what I wanted and needed. I had to start becoming more prepared for my discussion with her. She trained me to be my own diagnostician, so that when the engagement ended, I was empowered with the tools I needed to ask the right questions.
She sent me a book that was particularly helpful called StrengthsFinder. I did the online survey that comes with the book, and the report I received was so personalized – it really just hit the nail on the head. It’s a document that I can have forever, that I can always reference, and I can even take the survey again when I’ve grown and matured more as a professional.
So I have this gremlin that’s always nudging me about my communication skills. And Sharon really helped me to recognize the gremlin and get control of it, and recognize that my communication skills are much stronger than I thought. Now instead of feeling like my communication skills are weak, I’m walking in knowing that I’m a wonderful communicator, it’s probably my strongest asset, and it’s what’s going to help me to achieve success in my career. That was an absolute turnaround.
And I’m starting a new position on Monday that I’m totally excited about!
I’m confident that this is the right position for me. I can see it very clearly, I can see the big picture, I can see how I can leverage this position later on. I’ve never felt this level of freedom professionally. I’ve always felt like I was at the mercy of my manager.
I feel like a true leader, not just of my work, but of myself. I’m still a humble person, because that’s part of my personality. But professionally, I’m no longer waiting to get direction or waiting to be empowered. Here I am, I know what I’m worth, I know what my strengths are, I know what I’m capable of, I’m taking the lead. I know what I need to do.
You can have a conversation with yourself for a whole year and not get anywhere. Why waste time sitting there going around in circles talking to yourself, trying to figure things out, not being sure, when you can have that conversation with someone whose prime objective is to help you think? You cut your time down and focus your energy in a more positive way by investing in a career coach. Because it is an investment. It’s an investment in yourself. And you’ll start seeing the results quickly – it’s not the type of investment that you have to wait a long time to see the return!
Strategic Financial Analysis
New York City Department of Health, New York, NY