by Meghan Watson, AccountingWEB
As early as nursery school, my report cards (despite “exceeding expectations”) would always mention, “Meghan needs to keep her social interactions to a minimum.” Later, my creative side had most friends and family thinking I would go into graphic design or become an educator. I’d like to think I was the mastermind behind the artfully crafted bulletin boards in high school. I went on to thoroughly enjoy my photography class as an escape from accounting classes at Boston College. I then took to scrapbooking when our first son was born, and that quickly evolved into party planning with elaborate and innovative themes for cocktail shindigs, birthday parties and, most recently, a bridal shower for my sister-in-law. Throughout many of those years, I was a server at a local pizza place before graduating to an upscale restaurant in Lawrenceville, then a Major League Baseball stadium and a well-known restaurant chain known for an Italian dessert made with ricotta cheese. I also happen to be the only child of a hard-working single mother, who was thrilled when I landed an accounting job in New York City before graduating.
So, what does this have to do with women in advisory or leading clients? Professionally, during my 22+ years in advisory, I’ve been engaging in many of these same activities – learning, sharing, being creative, listening intently, absorbing everything, being aware of my environment, adapting, leveraging my knowledge, working hard, connecting the dots and cherishing relationships. Just like when I was trying to get to know my classmates or when I was waiting tables, I paid attention to small cues, body language, word choice, facial expressions, emotions, etc. I’m proud to say that I do all of these things with my clients regularly – some intentionally and some unconsciously. I guess you can say I’ve been tapping into my emotional intelligence before it was a “thing.”
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