When it comes to advancing your career, you’re not in it alone – really! The people who you’re around every day – those typing at the desk next to you, grabbing coffee with you in the office kitchen, dialing in to your team meetings – can all help you get to where you want to go.
No one knows this better than Cathleen Cordoba. As Lead Office Coordinator for Salesforce in Dublin, Cathleen works with an international team and is always thinking about success in terms of connections within and across borders. “By building trusted relationships with my international colleagues and my internal teammates,” she says, “we are able to collaborate, align, and support one another easily and effectively.”
It’s that strong emphasis on camaraderie that has helped Cathleen succeed, and led her to be honored as our most recent Salesforce Woman of the Month. A few examples of how teamwork is making Cathleen’s career dream work: her colleagues rallied around her last year to successfully move almost 1,000 employees into a new building in just one weekend (without breaking a sweat!), and joined up as she expanded our Earthforce Dublin chapter to help make Salesforce a more Earth-friendly company.
We had a chance to sit down with Cathleen to hear about her journey and why the people around her have been the most valuable assets in her career and in her life. Here are Cathleen’s top three ways connecting with others can energize your career:
The world is getting bigger, but it’s also bringing us closer together! Working internationally has allowed Cathleen to see the value in varying points of view. She’s been able to connect with colleagues overseas (and right next door) who work on totally different projects than she does. And that’s who she’s able to learn from the best.
“Talking to people in a completely different org broadens your thinking and helps you get a fresh perspective on the company,” she told us. For Cathleen, seeing things from a new angle has helped her achieve more wins (and fewer grrr moments) at work.
Tip #1: Make an effort to schedule coffee dates with people on different teams to learn about their projects and hear their perspectives.
Cathleen let us in on a personal secret to success: She doesn’t have just one mentor. In fact, she points out that it’s easy to find inspiration in anyone, at any level, even when it’s not obvious at first glance. Most people have something awesome to offer – you just have to look. Her advice? It’s up to you to find and act on the qualities you admire most in others.
Tip #2: Make a list of 10 people you know at work, on as many different teams and at as many different levels as you can. Then, think about which qualities you admire in each person, and start making a concentrated effort to embody those characteristics more and more. (Bonus points if you tell your colleagues how they are inspiring you!)
Cathleen lives and works by a mantra: Add value. She walks the floors of the building saying hi to her coworkers, speaks up in meetings, offers help, and gives advice whenever possible. Cathleen’s on a mission to contribute to a productive team and organization, and the overall success of her peers reflects back
Part of delivering more value has meant working with others to raise the bar. Cathleen cringes when she hears age-old excuses like “This is how it’s always been done in the past” and “if it’s not broke, don’t fix it.” In her view, creating new ways of working together to build on tried and true processes is the best way to pay it forward.
Tip #3: Meet with a coworker or two over lunch to talk about any outdated or overly complicated processes. Then, work together to improve them.
The Salesforce Woman of the Month campaign turns the spotlight on the amazing women who help make Salesforce one of the World’s Most Innovative Companies (according to Forbes) and one of Fortune Magazine’s Best Companies to Work For. Honorees are nominated by fellow employees and selected by a dedicated committee that works to ensure a variety of roles and regions are honored.
To hear more from Cathleen Cordoba, make sure to connect with her on LinkedIn. And stay tuned for more career tips and tools for success from our next Salesforce Woman of the Month, coming your way in September.
Ready to advance your career at Salesforce? Visit salesforce.com/careers.