HOW BECOMING A LEADERSHIP CONSULTANT PREPARED ME FOR THE REAL WORLD
The following post was written by guest blogger Emily Scott, Theta Omega–University of South Carolina, 2017-2018 Leadership Consultant for the Fraternity.
Life as a Leadership Consultant was an unforgettable journey and I want to share with you how it shaped me for success!
Going into my senior year of college, I realized I had no clue what I wanted to do after graduation. The thought of being an LC always interested me—it would be a fun opportunity to spend my first year post-grad traveling North America meeting other Alpha Gams! Although my LC year was a lot of fun, I gained so much more than just airline miles. I gained skills and experiences that have propelled me ahead of my peers and set me up for career success.
Here’s how becoming an LC prepared me for the real world:
I developed transferable workplace skills through extensive, dedicated training.
The LC term begins with six weeks of intensive training in Indianapolis during the summer, prior to the start of the school year. It covers everything from how to submit an expense report to how to plan and execute a recruiting event. We practice writing and facilitating presentations, coaching and leading meetings, having difficult conversations and completing reports. We spent time in mock meetings and team building activities to hone our skills and provide each other with constructive feedback. In most jobs, skills like this are developed on the job as the opportunity arises, and often, there is not much room for critiques or learning moments. As an LC, you are immersed in practicum for six weeks and develop skills that are necessary and transferable in any career.
I gained experience in building trust and rapport with a variety of stakeholders.
Once training concluded, my typical work day consisted of calls and meetings with collegiate women, Fraternity staff members, campus professionals and Alpha Gamma Delta volunteers. These stakeholders each had different goals tasks and goals they need to measure. In other words, they all needed something different from me, and usually needed it quickly. I quickly learned to build relationships with these stakeholders and communicate with them effectively and genuinely during every interaction. These interactions made me a stronger relationship-builder and communicator. Now, in my current position outside of Alpha Gam, I have no problem attending meetings and conference calls with co-workers, clients and other employees of any level in my organization and speaking up when needed. I’ve also recently moved to a new city and been able to quickly develop relationships—all thanks to the practice I had as an LC.
I grew my ability to adapt to all situations.
True story: I began interviewing for jobs as I wrapped up my year as an LC. While completing a chapter visit in Montgomery, Alabama, I was invited for a final round interview in Charlotte, North Carolina, On the day of my interview, I was scheduled to leave Montgomery at 6:00 a.m., then fly home to my family in Boston with a layover in Charlotte. After some re-arranging with my flights and working with my manager, I was able to rebook the second half of my flight from Charlotte to Boston so I could interview during my layover. Talk about an interesting travel day! I made it to Charlotte that morning (after almost missing my outgoing 6:00 a.m. flight) and during the interview, my interviewer happened to ask about my travel schedule. I mentioned my crazy travel plans nonchalantly with a laugh as the interviewers looked at me with stunned faces. Being an LC taught me how to adapt to any situation. Whether it was rearranging travel plans, finding supplies that have gone missing for an event that day or helping a collegiate member needed something I hadn’t prepared for, being an LC taught me how to take everything in stride and adapt to the situation.
Oh, and the interviewer asking about my flight? She’s now my manager and told me she knew I was perfect for the job because of how easily I was able to adapt to that travel day.
I became a confident young professional (with the best support network by my side).
Have you ever walked into a room with a group of people and automatically knew they were going to make you better? That they would challenge you, support you, match your passions and grow with you into the best version of yourself? That’s how I felt the moment I walked into my first day of LC training. I was surrounded by accomplished women ready to make an impact on our organization and our world. Throughout my time as an LC, these women taught me to attack every project, every task and every day with confidence—no matter the challenge ahead. I learned from other International Headquarters staff and volunteers the impact of my words and actions. I also learned about myself and what I needed—both personally and professionally—to be my best, successful self.
All these experiences have given me confidence to tackle any task and launch myself head-first into my professional career. I know will be successful because I have learned from some of the best. I also have all those amazing co-workers on speed dial if I ever need a dose of inspiration.
Today, live in Charlotte, North Carolina, and work in Campus Recruiting at Wells Fargo. My team recruits and hires more than 500 interns and full time Investment Banking Analysts from more than 50 college campuses. A lot of my direct experiences as an LC prepared me for this role. But more so, these skills have blossomed my career in Recruiting, Human Resources and Project Management.
I am so grateful for all I’ve learned as an LC and I encourage anyone considering applying to do so. The impact of your time as an LC will stay with you long after your 1-2 years in the role; it will set you up for success in all of your future endeavors.
To learn more about the Leadership Consultant Program and to apply to be a 2019-2020 Leadership Consultant, click here.