President's Message, October 2021

What does Success mean to You?

It was many years ago….

Fresh out of college. I was a top candidate, interviewing for my (then) dream job. It was the last, of a sequence of panel-style interviews. Each subsequent interview was with a higher level of management. I already knew many of my answers to their questions were knocking it out of the park, and I felt so close to achieving my dream job.

And then the highest-level executive, who was also a woman (not very common back then) asked me a question. Even before she asked, I was already in awe of everything I had observed about her. The tone of her voice still echoes in my head, “So, Rebecca – tell me what success means to you.”

I was aghast. I went blank! I didn’t know! I knew for me – success was not wealth, prosperity, or fame, but if that wasn’t success for me – what was? How could I not know? How did I not have a vision, a plan?

How I wish I had been a member of ABWA then.

Sadly, and obviously, I did not get my (then) dream job. However, I did get the best lesson of my life and the success question now lives with me every single day.

At first, I thought success seemed like it should be equated to huge accomplishments where you apply for a patent or have a street or a building named after you, or something like that.

I then eventually whittled it down to simply be the achievement of desired visions and planned goals, and of course the realization that success will mean something different to each and every person. And rightfully so.

I think of that female executive often. Just by the one question she asked me. I now know that she had a vision – she had a plan and given her status in the organization – she had achieved her goals and knew very well, that feeling of success.

Through the resources available to me in ABWA, I found my vision. I learned how to plan, how to set achievable/measurable goals. I learned how to overcome obstacles, and, finally, how to envision and earn that once elusive feeling of success.

Many years later, the success question emerges again to taunt me. But now, it’s different, mainly because things change. The world is now changing. Faster than ever.

Life changes – when you least expect it, right? Then what happens? You pivot. Logistics change. Perspectives change. And dreams change.

And hence a new realization emerges for me today, which is; success is not a destination or an end point.

Success is a journey.

My very best wishes to you – my ABWA sister - on your personal and individual success journey AND always know ABWA is there to support you and enhance your efforts - every step of the way!

In Gratitude,

Rebecca Lalwani
2021-2022 Pathfinder President

October 2021 Newsletter

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