Work hard and be nice to people. Those words have been my career motto, and I'm excited to say they have payed off! Today I'm sharing all about my next move in my career.

No, I'm not leaving IBM. I can honestly say I love working for this forward-thinking tech company. A year ago I had two offers as I was leaving Big Red, one from IBM and one from a very popular ice chest company based in Austin. The ice chest company was appealing as it is an extremely popular brand and growing like crazy, however the commute would have been terrible and I knew I would be working lots of over-time. Not to mention the benefits lacked. I went back and forth and really struggled with my decision but ultimately went with IBM for these reasons:

- Established company
- Tech field (This is my first role with a tech company and I've learned so much. There are a ton of tech companies in Austin so it's an amazing field to be in for future opportunities.)
- Shorter Commute (still takes me about 45 minutes to an hour depending on the day)
- Ability to try lots of different roles and move up within the same company
- Benefits
- Work-Life Balance / Flexibility

I work with extremely smart and creative people, and my boss has been absolutely wonderful. If you've ever had a bad boss, you know what a breath of fresh air it is to be surrounded by positive and supportive leaders.

Now on to the new job! I'm going to be the Social Strategist Team Lead for IBM Hybrid Cloud. I'm beyond excited to take a role on the social team, and take my next step in leadership. I've been working with my mentor and have decided I'm going to work towards an executive role which can take decades, but I'm up for the challenge!

How did I get this role?

1.) I networked like crazy. I went to every event and socialized with everyone even if they weren't on my team. IBM is massive and has many business units so my goal for the first year was to learn as much as I could about each business unit. I was planning within the first few months of where I wanted to make my next move, but first I wanted to hear from employees. I set up 1x1 meetings with people and asked if I could pick their brain. I stayed curious and was intentional. I also volunteered and joined every committee I could. I made great friends with people inside my business unit and out. You never know who will be your next peer or boss!

2.) I made my goals and interests known. I told my peers about the things I was good at and what I liked. I was very interested in social and exploring that business unit and people around me knew it. When this role opened up I had people advocating for me, because they knew I was passionate about it. I wasn't applying just because I wanted something new. My boss came to bat for me and was extremely supportive. Even though I had only been in my current role a year, she knew it was a great opportunity and couldn't let me pass it up.

3.) I worked hard in my current role. Just because I was planning for my next step in my career did not mean I put my current work on the back burner. That is the worst thing you can do! If I had done a crappy job, I would never have gotten this promotion. My boss and managers around me knew my work ethic and fought for me.

Photos: Madeline Harper | Location: Woodbine Mansion | Suit: Theory c/o Domain Northside

I start TODAY and am looking forward to this new challenge and next step in my career. I will be diving in to the Cloud world, so if you want to geek out about it let me know ; ). If you any career questions, hit me up on LinkedIn!

The postings here are my own and don't necessarily represent IBM's positions, strategies or opinions. All thoughts are my own.

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