The call that changed it all
The call that changed it all
I can still picture the day in my mind:
The grocery-store parking lot in which I curbed my car on a brisk winter day so I could take the introductory call from my Vanguard recruiter. Curious and cautious, I wasn’t sure “the corporate life” was for me. But I’d heard Vanguard’s different—and has been since its inception by John Bogle as a Main Street soul in a Wall Street world.
As you can tell by my writing a #LifeatVanguard blog, the recruiter call that day in the parking lot went well (as did the subsequent phone calls and interviews). One of the main reasons that Vanguard was so attractive to me as a job candidate is that it seemed like a place where I could find the coveted combination of longevity and variety.
I liked that Vanguard seemed to be a company where—with some initiative—I could stay but not get stagnant. I liked that it seemed to be a place that provides the option to cultivate a career comprised of different roles, lasting working relationships, and a strong sense of community. I liked that it seemed to offer chances in the midst of changes.
Thankfully, when I needed all of those perceptions to be true in my debut role at Vanguard, and through some organizational changes, they all were.
The power to steer your career proved to be true
Naturally, organizational change can bring unknowns. Seeing some uncertainty on the horizon but still being certain I wanted a long, vibrant Vanguard career, I seized opportunities to diversify my skills in ways that 1) advanced the value I could add to my teams; and 2) aligned with Vanguard’s implementation of new ways of working in the future.
Thanks to leaders in my subdivision, one such opportunity for diversification was LUMA Institute® Facilitator training. It was increasingly clear in company communications that Vanguard was encouraging more (and better) collaboration and was equipping cohorts of employees to obtain LUMA’s facilitator certification.
With a simpler approach to Human-Centered Design, LUMA facilitator training provided me with powerful tools and proven techniques for fostering collaboration in ways that generate innovative solutions after helping to identify the right problem to solve for in the first place.
I continue to bring that enriched approach to problem-solving to my present role, in addition to ad hoc facilitation opportunities that Vanguard’s LUMA-certified crew can undertake in support of other teams, in or beyond our own divisions.
Considerations for charting your own life at Vanguard
Whether you’re reading this as a fellow crew member currently working at Vanguard, or you’re reading this as a potential hire who’s thinking about applying to Vanguard, I offer these considerations from my own revelations in my first year and a half:
- Remember that you are the captain of your career.
- Don’t let your excuses ruin your chances.
- Challenge your own comfort zone.
- Look for career advocates to help you navigate.
To be candid, no organization is perfect. But in my overall 15-year career, Vanguard is exceptional in many respects, both past and present. This also makes me hopeful for its future—and mine, too— and shows that a little initiative will continue to go a long way.