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Being Intentional in Our Work: Hope Is Not a Strategy

Everything we do in life is a choice. Each decision we make along the way is a choice we need to own, because when we do so, we keep the power. Being intentional when we make these choices, whether in our personal or professional lives, is essential. Some choices will require that we be brave, exposing ourselves to the ruthless judgement of others.

When it comes to successfully juggling different parts of our lives – such as work and home - tough choices about what to prioritize will have to be made. We decide what’s most important, what’s worth worrying about, and do our best to let go of the rest - including the opinions of others about what kind of manager—or parent—we are.

Now, when work and family often occupy the same space, trying to be effective and productive in each sphere can push us to our limits. If we’re lucky, we have a strong support network of family and friends to inspire us through exhausting times, knowing that at the end of the day, our personal “cheerleaders” have got our backs. Life is hard for everyone, but especially for those who fight against the odds.

New business models in the wake of the pandemic bring with them a wonderful opportunity to challenge issues of stale corporate culture, breaking through to a better, more compassionate, more humane kind of workplace. Just as we’re now seeing the whole lives of colleagues onscreen—a much richer and enriching way of seeing and being seen—we have the chance to be not just hopeful about sponsoring the leaders of the future, but positively intentional about how we will go about it.

Being intentional is more important than ever for companies. Managers need to be intentional about creating a more inclusive, equitable and empowering culture that will help identify and support leaders of the future. Hope is not a strategy. In order to see the change we seek, we need to set targets, set objectives and set expectations. Only then can the ambitions of talented people be recognized and nurtured like never before.

I hope you will join me on April 8th when I’ll be speaking about being Unapologetically Ambitious at Culturati Summit, the virtual event of the year on corporate culture, April 6-8, 2021. Arianna Huffington, Tristan Walker, and many more thought leaders will share our ideas and actionable takeaways around culture, diversity, equity & inclusion, and empowering managers.

  • About the Author:
  • Shellye Archambeau is an experienced CEO and Board Director with a track record of accomplishments building brands, high performance teams, and organizations. Ms. Archambeau currently serves on the boards of Verizon [NYSE:VZ], Nordstrom [NYSE: JWN], Roper Technologies [NYSE: ROP], and Okta [NASDAQ: OKTA]. She is also a strategic advisor to Forbes Ignite and to the President of Arizona State University, and serves on the boards of two national nonprofits, Catalyst and Braven.

Shellye is the former CEO of MetricStream, a Silicon Valley-based company she built into a global market leader with over 1200 employees serving customers around the world. Under her leadership MetricStream was recognized for growth and innovation over the years and was named in the top 10 of the “Deloitte Technology Fast 50” and named a global leader in GRC by leading independent analyst firms for 9 consecutive years.