Building relationships as a path to leadership
Women’s History Month is a celebration of women’s contributions to history, culture and society and has been observed annually in the month of March in the United States since 1987. As part of this year’s theme: Celebrating Women Who Tell Our Stories, we will highlight women from our Crew Resource Groups (CRGs) who will share their unique stories and perspectives.
In the third installment of this series, we feature Huntley W. as she shares her experience in our Women’s Initiative for Leadership Success (WILS) CRG.
When I joined Vanguard almost 6 years ago, I knew I wanted to find a community of women who championed one another and were each other’s biggest advocates. I started my Vanguard career supporting communications for our Institutional business and immediately joined Vanguard’s Women’s Initiative for Leadership Success (WILS) Crew Resource Group. As I began attending events, networking sessions, and webinars, I quickly realized what an incredible network I was building. Meeting both new and tenured Vanguard women and understanding their career paths provided me a huge sense of comfort and security.
When it was time for my next challenge, I took on a role as a senior writer for Vanguard’s Office of the General Counsel (OGC). I applied so many learnings from my mentors and friends in my WILS community, and I continued to lean on them when I needed advice or was facing challenges. I eventually expanded my role in WILS and became the OGC WILS Chief of Staff where I formed relationships with several of Vanguard’s senior leaders. It was during that time that one of my mentors encouraged me to pursue people leadership fulltime. Little did I know that I was about to take on not only more responsibility within my role at Vanguard, but also within WILS.
Today I lead a team of five incredible communicators for Vanguard’s Personal Investor business where I have the unique opportunity to communicate our digital strategy and client experience objectives to our crew. I also have the pleasure of serving as the WILS Communications Chief of Staff where I have met some of the most talented and strategic women I’ve ever had the pleasure of working with. Without my network of extraordinary, inspiring, and powerful women — both in and outside of WILS — I never would have had the courage to pursue people leadership or expand my responsibilities within WILS. I hope I can one day return the favor and provide other women the same opportunities that were afforded to me.
– Huntley W.