Today, September 22nd, is the first day of fall in the U.S., and I hope you are planning to celebrate with your favorite fall drink. Our Workplace Success Group family is also celebrating that for 22 years we’ve had the privilege to serve clients around the world. And what better way to celebrate than by sharing gifts with those who’ve been by our side along the way.
If you are the kind of person who can’t wait to open presents, feel free to scroll to the bottom of this email and see what we’ve been preparing for you. But if you have a couple of extra minutes to celebrate with us, let me share some of the milestones and lessons I’ve enjoyed along the way. Perhaps they will inspire your personal fall reflection.
Lessons from an Unlikely Success Story
Growing up in the Caribbean island of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, before I migrated to the U.S. with my family, one of my elementary school teachers wrote the following on my report card: “Karen is a good student, but she is too talkative.”
There’s a lesson in that comment: sometimes we fail to recognize and nurture the hidden gifts that will make our emerging leaders successful. In my case, being talkative has been my secret sauce and what I get to do every day—as a trainer, facilitator, and coach—to help leaders and teams thrive.
Along the way, I found myself…
- Writing my first of five books and seeing an article about my work in the Boston Globe
- Seeing my articles published in the Hartford Business Journal, the Toronto Manager, and mentions in Black Enterprise Magazine and other publications
- Hosting an international women’s and girls’ leadership conference in St. Vincent and the Grenadines
- Writing a workplace column for over 15 years for Searchlight, an international newspaper based in St. Vincent
- Bouncing back from the first time a client told me I missed the mark, and the many times I was sure I would quit and close up shop
But the most gratifying of all my memories is meeting people who have shared how our work has positively impacted their personal and professional careers. Today, I’m deeply grateful that new clients continue to find us because of the reputation my team and I have built over the 22 years.
Last but not least, I take a bow with deep appreciation before our faithful clients—and now dear friends—who have continued working with WSG year after year, in some cases for 10-15 years.
A Few Lessons Learned
I started WSG because I wanted to help develop the next generation of diverse leaders. The inspiration came while I worked in a Boston high school, helping juniors and seniors navigate internships in the financial services industry. At the time, building diverse talent and pipelines was a bold step, which put me on a path to do Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion work before it was popular. Along the way, I learned that…
- Fear and doubt can either cripple you or can become the fuel that propels you forward.
- People are willing to help and advocate for one’s work, so ask for help!
- Building something worthwhile requires patience and perseverance. The longest it took for a prospect to become a client was 6 years—and it was worth the wait!
- Lessons are repeated until they are learned.
Over the last 22 years, our mission has expanded, but we have never wavered from developing leaders—those who lead today and those who will lead tomorrow.
Our Gift to You!
You asked and we listened! Workplace Success University is the new addition to WSG’s toolbox to help companies thrive. Loaded with some of our free resources, it will help you and your team engage in difficult conversations about diversity, equity, and inclusion during these challenging times. Over the next few weeks, we will continue adding free resources and exclusive programs. You can join for free now and be the first one to hear when they arrive.
Thank you for being part of our journey and allowing our Workplace Success team to serve you.
With sincere gratitude,
Karen Hinds, CEO
Workplace Success Group
Karen Hinds is a leadership and diversity and inclusion expert. She used her experience in building talent pipelines for financial services companies to launch her company over 20 years ago. Workplace Success Group is a strategic, talent development firm that works with organizations to cultivate and retain their next generation of leaders.