The opposite of my first manager would be the person who gave me what I like to call my first “real” chance. When the temp job was up, I started working with a car rental company. I’ll be honest; working in the local sector isn’t glamorous. There are no celebrities picking up cars, just a vacuum cleaner and vacationing families. I did however get put in contact with a woman that I continue to go to for mentoring and someone I knew I could learn from.
Twenty-five years with the same company meant she knew what she was talking about.
Dog with a bone. It was her favorite phrase – cliché I know, but it will always stick in my mind. Not just because she said it so many times, but because it mattered. Sure, it was always said in reference to sales, since this job was heavy in them, but it’s something I’ve carried with me. Any time I’m given a project, or I’m struggling, I hear her in the back of my head Be like a dog with a bone, Maranda! Grr.
Trust and confidence. She was the first person to ever give me a “project”. Basically, she made me the Fort Worth fleet manager for a period of time. We wanted to keep costs down and we needed to how much we were spending on depreciation each week, where extra cars were, and the like. I got my own walkie-talkie and I learned that sometimes, when you do something you really care about, your day doesn’t end just because you punched out or left the office.
I don’t work for her anymore, I have taken another step in my career, and it’s been a good change for me. I still keep in touch with her and keep her updated on what’s going on with me. I have a tremendous amount of respect for her and I always will. If I can be half of the business woman she is, then I will know I did something right.