[Full disclosure – my blog isn’t about the assignment work. I like to focus on all the gooey stuff happening below the surface, deep in that introspective place of the soul. Read on if you dare enter that place on a corporate blog site :-)]
I told myself (and most of you) that I would blog constantly during my PULSE assignment. Instead, I joined Twitter. Initially I joined out of necessity for my assignment; but then I realized the power of capturing my thoughts over time, with the ability to look back and reflect. It’s been helpful for me to capture my thoughts “on a whim” so I don’t lose the feelings & thoughts I’m experiencing. My structure is simple – I find someone else’s quotes/quips/comments and applying them to the moment I am in… I like to call them #GGism’s for those who follow my twitter-verse.
So what am I learning during all my tweeting and reflecting? This is the one that sticks with me the most… “Maybe the journey isn’t about becoming anything. Maybe it is about unbecoming everything that isn’t really you, so you can become who you were meant to be in the first place.” And my #GGism response to this was easily agreed – The more undone I become, the stronger more capable I am.
Every single GSK employee should go through a PULSE assignment…. whether local, regional or internationally based. It doesn’t matter if you are helping local teachers find their voice or helping children in Africa find their next meal in life…. What matters most is the mutual transformation that occurs with them & with you throughout the process. It’s not something you could ever understand through reading a blog, especially one so selfishly-focused as mine! It is something that requires you saying to yourself “I’m going to apply”. The entire process to get me to this point today in this blog has been life changing…. not in a massive, sweeping WOW sort of way…. but in a thousand, small, little ways. That sort of change is certifiably guaranteed, whether you like it or not, with a PULSE assignment. Every single GSK employee should go through a PULSE assignment. Period. [#makeithappenAndrew!]
Fact: We live in uncertain times. We live in uncertain times as a business, as an employee, as an individual with a personal life to live. Why all the doom and gloom? Because… that’s just it… it’s not doom and gloom. Uncertainty will always be a fact of life, business, and society. You can view it as uncertainty or you can view it as a reminder to take charge of the opportunities that are right there in front of you. Become undone, in a way you never thought possible. There were a thousand reasons why PULSE was not the right time for me – on a personal level, during a departmental restructure, and as GSK’s trajectory was scrutinized in the press. And there was always that underlying fear of ‘asking’ the world for even more change – would I have a job upon return? would my family understand? would my team understand? would life be different? The more I “PULSE” the more I realize what matters most is simple — not only am I transforming an NGO, but they are transforming me…. in a way so mutually beneficial that neither will leave each other the same. There is something to be said about a company like GSK who offers this type of experience to it’s employees…. regardless of the demands of the stock market. In the words of MasterCard: priceless.
Regardless of the fears you have, I promise you, you will never regret…. you will only become who you were always meant to be.
[Even more disclosure – I’m obviously aware that I’m not completed my assignment and have the infamous ‘transition back into GSK’ period ahead of me still, but I am still authentically optimistic… PULSE has the affect on you!]
Stay Tuned! (And follow me on Twitter if you are into this gooey, soul searching stuff @GeriGGHarris)
P.P.S. — For those that do follow me on Facebook or Twitter, you’ll know that the journey is not all love & apple pie based on small incident this morning… however, I’d like to think I handled it in a way I made my pre-PULSE self proud!
Here is one of the many #WhyITeach bubbles we collected at our Teacher Convening this month…. fits right in with PULSE way of life!