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What Influences You?

Where do you find inspiration?

When we take time to listen, watch, think & reflect- there is an opportunity to be influenced by content. Many influences are pushed at us- images on socials, videos or listening to a podcast conversation. However what happens when we are forced to sit one-on- one with strangers and generate conversation?

Often the act of participating in conversation can influence your perspective.

Today I had the opportunity to be part of Wake County Public School's annual Career Academy Internship Summit. There were sessions designed to assist students with becoming more comfortable with the processes of finding & securing an internship. There were discussions around crafting a resume, positioning value, and how to leverage networking for securing a job. While similar concerns & fears were common among students in each session, the common concern that intrigued me was around identifying the culture of the company.

Our power's of observation teach us a lot. For example how individuals dress & interact immediately sets a tone. Similarly the environmental setting plays a huge part in the type of interaction that takes place daily in the space. Is the office an open concept or closed off in cubical? What can you hear? Maybe music, laughing, a hum of equipment or even quiet like a library. How about the physical interior? Perhaps it is modern & uncluttered or cozy & an eclectic . Do walls have upscale professional photography & paintings or group photos of co- workers teamed up to volunteer? How about signs of personality & fun like a straw hat or foam finger souvenir from a conference.

Conversation has to be ignited and should be an exchange of thoughts between individuals. By sharing our stories, fears and commonalities impressions are made, which influence our perspective long after conversation ceases. Hopefully each of the students came away today with insights that will make their next steps less stressful & the outcome productive to their future careers.

Read more about WCPSS career academies from last year's post around building a network here.

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