IACCGH “Mapping Your Future” Session by UH Dean Ramchand

The attendees with Dean Ramchand in a group picture before the men left and the session started.  Photos: Bijay Dixit

The attendees with Dean Ramchand in a group picture before the men left and the session started. Photos: Bijay Dixit

HOUSTON: Dean Latha Ramchand of the C. T. Bauer College of Business at the University of Houston conducted a follow up session for her talk “Mapping Your Future” originally delivered on November 13, 2013 at the Hess Club. The Chamber also opened it up to women who had missed the previous session and wanted to be part of this “ mentoring circle” event sponsored by Shell.

The Dean’s talk centered on the topic of taking a strategic approach to planning your career.

She emphasized the following points

Follow your heart: While things change and plans must be flexible, we must start by allowing our strengths to inform our career choices.  A personal SWOT analysis provides a good starting point.  Our passions must ultimately speak to our ‘jobs’.

The power of strategic networks:  Networks are critical and rather than letting the event in our life dictate our networks, we must cultivate networks based on our passions and goals.

List your challenges: Finally we must be clear about our challenges and tackle them head on, whether they are personal habits we need to get rid of, or education and credentials we need to acquire so we achieve our goals.

Track your progress: Like the way we depend on GPS systems anymore to track our destinations and road maps, we must think about career goals in an analytical manner and map out steps to get there, recognizing that there might be traffic jams not to mention ‘detour’ signs we may have to allow for.

IACCGH President Sanjay Ramabhadran welcomed the guests and the men left the room before the session began. Board member Joya Shukla chaired the event and can be contacted at  joya.shukla@shell.com for more information on future events.

IACCGH Board Member Joya Shukla (left) chaired the event, with Dean Ramchand.

IACCGH Board Member Joya Shukla (left) chaired the event, with Dean Ramchand.

The perspective of one of the attendees  

On June 18, 2014 I got the opportunity to attend a  “IACCGH Women’s Leadership Series” event on the topic “Mapping your future” led by Dr. Latha Ramchand, Dean of the C.T. Bauer College of Business, University of Houston.  The event started with dinner followed by the session where Dr. Ramachand introduced us to the SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats) Analysis.  She asked us to take few minutes and write a few points on our strength, weaknesses, opportunities and threats based on our individual understanding. She emphasized that writing these down would help us to use our strengths and work on our weaknesses so that we can utilize the available opportunities without being threatened by our perceived threats.  This led to small discussion where participants discussed and shared their personal stories.

She also emphasized the fact that it is very important to know both our short and long term goals and write them in such a way that they are visible to us every day and hence, help us to be on track. We may break them down into small goals on a daily basis which lead us towards reaching our long term goals.  When we see those goals being achieved, our brain releases the hormone Dopamine which keeps up happy and more motivated about achieving our goals. She also suggested that one should ponder upon the tactics they need to use to develop expertise and attain their career goals. It may be through education, training, conferences and books.  She stressed that one should strategize networking and must work towards creating/ expanding network that will help them towards reaching their professional/personal goals.  Overall, it was a great workshop which pushed me to think about my goals and strategize them properly in order to achieve them. It familiarized me with various tactics that I can use to improve myself on a regular basis. I will look forward to attend more similar events in future.

-Srimoyee Bhattacharya