I sat crying in his office – ugly crying – and he laughed at me. “This is great”, he said. Excuse me? I just poured my heart out to you about all the struggles I am having in my job and you think this is great? My brain stopped working while on maternity leave. I was in a role that I had no experience with. I was an emotional wreck and great it was not.
Clearly he wasn’t hearing me. “This is the first time you are being challenged and it’s great”, he said. I was done being challenged. I was done with my job. I was up all night with my 6 month old nursing baby and trying to learn a job that someone took a big chance on giving me.
“Alicia, you can do this. I know you can. I believe in you.”
Those were the words that changed everything for me. You see, he was the president of our team. He hired me. He knew me. He saw potential where I saw failure. I went into his office asking for my old job back because I didn’t think I was capable of doing my current one and came out knowing I had the capability to succeed.
My own mother even told me to go get an easier job (I mean the struggle was real, people) but he didn’t let me. He knew I could do it and so I did.
I am forever thankful because those words literally changed my life.
That was 3 years ago and I successfully learned that role and have been promoted twice since then. I think about that day often and play those words over and over in my mind.
As a manager, I cannot overemphasize how important it is to make sure your team knows you believe in them. You are shaping the future with the people you manage and you have no idea the huge influence you can have on both their career and life.
As a parent, you have to make sure your kids know you believe in them. This world is hard and people aren’t nice. They need home support in the utmost way.
As a spouse or friend, quit second guessing and adding your opinion where it’s not needed. Believe in their choices, their dreams, their goals and support them however they need support.
Because there is power in believing in someone. I am proof, it can change someone’s life.