Lori, a mom of four children, has had her fair share of playing the juggling act that working mothers are all too familiar with. When she was looking to advance in her career, the next level role required her to have completed an international assignment outside of the US. With three children at the time, she just knew it wasn’t possible. Lori recalls feeling that she would never “reach my career aspirations, although, in my heart, I knew this was the right thing for my family. So I wrote it off and moved on.”
Later in the year, Lori had a career talk with her manager and candidly shared that she felt she “probably won’t go much beyond this level.” He was surprised and said “you're assuming that everything is so fixed and rigid, that there's only one way that this can be done. Let's talk about what would work for you.”
It can be uncomfortable to speak up and say what you need and share your career aspirations, but only once your manager knows, then they can help advocate for you. On the flip side, for people leaders, it is our responsibility to create a workplace culture that is inclusive and where employees can feel safe to speak up.