"Sports gave me a lot of identity and personality"
She Moves Us - Interview with General Manager Sportstyle, Maria Valdes
Regional General Manager Latin America
When planning a career path, we should be clear on what we want. We could either target an objective (for instance, being a General Manager) or a path (for instance, always work in positions that are intellectually challenging). Whether we choose one or the other, we should be ready for certain trade-offs. In the first case, we might need to temporarily hold positions that we don’t particularly enjoy, but that will provide us with the necessary knowledge to reach our final destination. In the second one, we will probably enjoy the ride, but we will end up being specialists with a more limited amount of growth paths. It is our choice, which road we take.
Giving career advice is always a little daunting, as everyone is different, but here are a few things I believe in: Be curious! Ask the „basic“ questions no one else dares to ask, learn as much as possible about projects and processes in the company, and look for connections where there seem to be none. Have an opinion and don’t be afraid to say it respectfully! We are all hired to think, so share your thoughts and contribute in meetings, no matter how junior you are. Learn from others! Everyone has something they are really good at. Find this in everyone around you and implement some of it. Enjoy the now! A career is like a good book. It’s more important to enjoy each individual chapter than to get to the next one as soon as possible. Do what you love! You can only give your best sustainably when you are passionate about your work, brand, and team. Everyone has their passion — make sure you find yours!
Global Director Footwear Sourcing and Development
Understand and communicate. Ask questions, be interested, stay engaged. Don’t bring problems, but offer solutions. Stay focused on what’s relevant for the business and what makes a difference at the end. Build strong teams. People will always make the difference. If you have never been part of a strong team, it will be difficult leading one.
Head of Brand Sponsorship Activation Sports Marketing
Always treat people honestly and fairly. “The a*s you kick on the way up, maybe the one you have to kiss somewhere along the way.”
General Manager BU Accessories
Enjoy what you are doing and be passionate about it. Be eager to learn, be curious, ready to deal with controversial topics and viewpoints. Be authentic, trustworthy and have a strong ability to put ideas into action. Treat each individual with respect. Work hard and go the extra mile, but do not neglect your private life as it gives you the strength to stay balanced and healthy and it is also a source of inspiration. Stay focused and be flexible for changes at the same time. Do not be dogged and maintain (or develop) a sense of humor. Build great teams as they are key to success … and you need a little bit of luck on your side as well.
General Manager Teamsport
Be ambitious, but stay humble. Focus on what you can do for your company and not what the company should do for you. Don’t wait for the company or your manager to build your career plan – it is up to you. Build a network internally and externally. Find a mentor. Find the right balance between consistency and change. Don’t jump from job to job, but also don’t stay too long in one and the same job or area.