I was granted the Global Product Manager of the Year award last night at the conclusion of our Global Sales Meeting. Gosh it feels good!
I was told about it an hour before the awards ceremony right before the reception. I was told that I had to give a speech but I had to exercise brevity; 2 minutes was all the time I got.
I was giddy and grateful, and a bit nervous. How many seconds were in two minutes really? How many words? Which were the most important things I wanted to remember to say up there?
The night was flowing with all the quick conversations and dinner and talks but I hardly got to really slow down and think.
I had a rather rough week at the whole meeting because of several peripheral stuff happening. But now I was excited, I knew something really good most didn't know and it was about me!
We had a stand-up comedian right after the dinner who got to announce the awards. The award ceremony rolled along with Sales awards; people got on the stage and back down but none of them had a speech. Until we got to the Marketing awards. And finally, the Global Product Manager of The Year award ... my name on the board. I was sitting on the furthest chair away from the podium. So I had to walk the whole room to get up there. And mind you I was wearing a very long dress I had to lift a bit to be able to walk and maneuvering my way from between people standing and chairs pulled back. But I made it up there.
There was the President of our division, the Vice President of Marketing, and the Vice President of Sales greeting me up there. It was a monumental moment in my career life indeed.
I got to the podium after receiving my plaque. And the count down to 120 seconds started. I was grateful and honored. And that is the main thing I could manage saying to all my management and particularly my manager. I was graciously nervous mainly to observe the brevity order.
Later I got many comments that my speech was sincere, unique, and moving. Some colleagues even said they could cry hearing it all.
But I reran the whole scene in my head several times after that and thought if I had all the time I needed to talk, I would have delivered more in the below lines:
I am honored to have been granted this award particularly in presence of my senior colleagues who had done a great job in the whole course of the year last year. I am grateful for the opportunity granted to me two years ago when I was a senior R&D engineer, bored and unmotivated after my beloved project at the time, which I was leading the technical developments of it, got halted. I was told the next big thing was mine but there was no timeline defined for that. At the same time a position opened and I thought this was the best time to make the move to marketing as I had planned to do at one point. I already had my reputation in R&D, and I was OK accepting a demotion if needed to explore the marketing realm now better than when I was a principal R&D engineer.
I went to my interview sessions with nothing but my irrelevant graduate degree in engineering, my extensive product development experience but above all my determination to learn and execute the best I knew I could.
The interview sessions began and I got grilled! I had never been in any interview before, as technical as they could be, and feel so challenged than how I felt in my marketing position interview! I know they had their doubts but they decided to take a chance on me and more than that, they were determined to set me up for success. I was determined to prove them right with their decision.
I started my role not knowing the very simple things like what ADDU was or what D-Chain was which was particularly important in my first assignment which was a backorder management. Then here I am after less than two year in marketing winning the Global PM of the Year! It was not possible so efficiently if it were not for all the mentorship I received from those whom they might not even know how impactful their words and comments have been for me.
After my first back order management done successfully in a matter of few months I received many congratulatory emails from senior management and many sales managers for a great job well-done. There was a particular email though that got engraved in my career soul forever. It was a congratulatory email from our president, M.P., I responded back thankfully with how I always was willing to do my very best. Then he responded me again in these lines: always try your very best, and when you think you have, you will find that you have more gears to pull to propel you further than you may imagine! This was a memorable aspiring advice that sank with my logic so well.
I am thankful for our VP of Marketing, B.R.; he is always occupied but he is never too busy for you, always there for you, and always supportive and having your back. His whole team exemplifies his great leadership traits that are all very supportive and attentive and trusting. I had many brief but motivational discussions with J.G. and S.H. for which I am ever grateful.
Then there is my dear K.C. who was a believer in me from day one, I could tell. She was determined to coach me for success and taught me many aspects of my job; always there to counsel with me when I needed a couple minutes of her time.
And above all, I owe this to the single person who not only believed in me, he helped me see my unique strengths and encouraged me to double down on them; he believed in my strategic abilities way beyond my doubts; my manager G.S. who has been the best mentor and coach I have ever had.
I have worked in many different groups and I know how rare it is to be working for such supporting leaders in our management group. I am blessed!
Also blessed with the professional peers I am working with. We complement each other so harmoniously; it is an honor to be working with them.
And finally, my M and A who stood by me and all the life style shifts we had to all go through due to my career change; they were graciously supportive all the time. I am so grateful and I owe it all to them.
I take responsibility for my results and thank God this is a positive one; I am enjoying this honor and am looking forward to a great year pulling more gears forward.