I have to say that out of all the great take away points I heard from this seminar I think this one resonated with me the most, only because I have had this happen to me a few time already in my young career, and what comes down to is me not asking. Opportunities are everywhere around you, they may not always be out in plain sight visible for all to see but they are always there. It’s a matter of learning how to ask for them.
A story that was told with this point was about a female direct report she had and a male direct report that were in similar roles. The female did amazing work and the male did good but stellar work, but the male was always straight forward with her (his manager) on what he wanted to. He wanted to get into a role that would allow for him to relocate and work abroad for a few years to gain international experience. So a few months later after he brought this up again in his 1:1 with his manager, a role that would allow for exactly this opportunity he was looking for came open and the hiring manger was telling his manager about the role and needing to hire someone to fill, did she have anyone that came to mind….she obviously said, actually I know someone that has explicitly asked for an opportunity like this and she recommended him for the interview. Turned out he ended up getting the role and shortly thereafter he and his family relocated abroad. Well, her female direct report saw that her peer had taken a new role so she asked her manager about where he was going and when her manager told her, she said, “Wow! That sounds amazing! I wish I would’ve known about it, I would have applied for it. Where was that posted?”
Point here is opportunities aren’t posted on a bulletin board or a job board or very rarely any board but that doesn’t mean they aren’t out there. You need to ask people for what you want and let them know about the types of opportunities you are looking for because you never know when the one you are looking for is just around the corner….so don’t be afraid to just ask!