What do folks do when they are awarded a promotion at work? Some might relish the increase in salary, some might celebrate with a bit of the bubbly, and some might purchase some cutting edge electronic gadget that will make their friends envious. I think that for many folks celebration is a natural response to such news. Certainly advancements in position are associated with recognized competence, success, or longevity at a given company. What is not to savor when your worth, effort, and energy are recognized and appreciated in a formal way?
I was spurred to write this post because I recently received a job promotion at work. While this serves as some validation for all that I have done in my career to get to this point, this news has kind of caused me to ponder my station in life. My latest promotion marks my climb to what effectively represents the highest possible rung in my career ladder. I have reached the top of the mountain. There is no higher level that I can attain in my field. While that is gratifying, it seems like just yesterday I was a young man, eager to find his way and to make his mark. Eager to be doing the things that my mentors were doing. Now the student has become the master. Where did all the time go? How could my life race by so quickly?
As I write this post I am sitting in a meeting room filled with 30 or 40 of my colleagues. As I look around the room, I can quickly recall working with many of these folks on one project or another over the years. Each project that I was involved in forged more links in my career chain. With just a few moments of reflection, I start to gain some perspective and I can more clearly see how I got to where I am now, one relationship at a time.