Time really does fly, doesn’t it? I started this blog in 2011, and it really started taking off in 2012. For a few years, I posted often and really had a groove with blogging. I was in the trenches as a facilitator while leading a small team, which provided countless experiences, a-ha moments, ideas and some silly observations to share.
Somewhere around 2015, my day job evolved. Pivot.
I took a new role with a different company, which disrupted my posting schedule. My job duties became more managerial and I found myself spending considerably less time facilitating. My perspective shifted from that of a frontline practitioner to more of an operational leader.
But there was onboarding – which, throughout my years of L&D experience, had always been my true professional love. The new company I joined had an outstanding onboarding program, with just enough opportunity and room for improvement to add my own thumbprint. Many of my posts from that timeframe are onboarding-specific, some of which opened the door for some pretty cool opportunities. In 2016, I was invited to co-author a book, where I was able to contribute on this and other topics, and I presented numerous times at industry conferences and events all over the country, often on various aspects of onboarding.
During these years, my role with our local ATD chapter expanded as well; I have served in multiple board positions over the past several years, including chapter President in 2017. In fact, I’m still an old stalwart board member with ATD-CIC, and also currently serve as a National Advisor for Chapters (NAC) through ATD’s national organization – I mentor a region of chapters and provide support and guidance for their boards. My consulting practice/side hustle is also (quietly) thriving – I accept a small number of short-duration projects each year, almost entirely based on referral.
And then…if I’m being completely transparent with you…somewhere in the middle of all that, I began to wonder if I had run out of ideas to share. I also wondered if all of you, friends, readers and followers, were sick of me on my soapbox evangelizing the importance of the new employee experience. I mean, how much can one say on this subject? As it turns out, a lot (have you Googled it?) – but what topics did I really want to explore, onboarding or otherwise?
Note: I still maintain my stance and passion for the importance of results-focused onboarding and will continue to post about it as the mood strikes!
So, let’s call it what it is…I’ve struggled with a classic case of writer’s block over the past couple of years. During that time, my life has also seen its share of pivots. My daughter, who was 14 when phase(two)learning was born, is now 23…a college graduate, out on her own and starting her second year as an elementary school teacher. My son, who was only 9 when I started this blog, is 18 and about to graduate from high school (he is “finished,” but COVID-19 has delayed the actual ceremony until late July) and start college in August. Aside from my steadfast fiance who has been putting up with my crazy ideas since long before this blog was a “thing,” and the French Bulldog who pretty much controls my household, my nest is emptying, much faster than I like. Lately, I find myself daydreaming about what the next season of life has in store, and what I’d like to do with it.
Somewhere in the middle of all this…another pivot at the day job.
I am still at the same company I joined in 2015, and was promoted last fall to the role of AVP of Organizational Development. This senior leadership role has allowed me to flex some new muscles on the daily, as well as explore OD strategy at a deeper level – which I love. I’m truly leaning into my strengths (my StrengthsFinder top 5 = Strategic – Maximizer – Futuristic – Activator – Ideation) as I contribute in a more strategic way than the operationally-focused Talent Development Manager role I’d been in for 5 years. It’s going really well and has unearthed a number of learning opportunities…and, at long last, some writing inspiration!
It’s time to blow the dust off of phase(two)learning and begin sharing more about my role, the organizational dynamics and leadership challenges that go along with it, and how we, as Talent/Organizational Development leaders, practitioners and advocates, can ensure our voices are heard and our value is undeniable.
Friends, if you’re still with me (both the blog and this lengthy post!), thank you for your patience and support. I’m so grateful for the connections I’ve developed over the past 9 years of writing this blog.
I hope you and your loved ones are well during this very unusual time in our lives.
I hope you are navigating life’s pivot moments with grace and joy.
I hope you’re ready to turn the page with me.