Jayne was a mid-career professional working in corporate
human resources for a large consumer electronics company. Brett, an
acquaintance and the executive leading a major company-wide change initiative,
tapped Jayne to join his leadership team for the multi-year project. The
opportunity provided enormous visibility, exposure and the chance to influence
and be part of a corporate strategic initiative. Jayne described Brett:
He was passionate about people development and particularly about women’s development. Not only did he select me and other women to fill leadership roles. He also provided us with the development opportunities and the visibility to reinforce our credibility. He made sure that our voices were heard and our opinions respected.
In addition to providing opportunities for women, Brett
communicated his respect for women’s skills and contributions when he talked
about his own family. He spoke frequently about his daughter and son, with whom
he was very connected, as well as his wife, who he clearly held in high regard.
When Jayne was leaving the organization, Brett played an
important role in her transition. She was sharing her plans to launch her own
HR consulting firm when Brett chimed in, “I’d like to hire you to consult for
me and my team.” He became her first client. Brett’s confidence in Jayne fueled
her ambition and reinforced her belief that she could – in fact she was –
starting her own business.
Jayne shared that from her vantage point, Brett received no
recognition from the company for his actions and commitment to supporting the
professional development and growth of women. Nonetheless, it was clear Brett
played a vital and memorable role in her professional journey.