Growing up in a Hispanic household, my family was very modest. Nudity in any form was not accepted behavior. (I won’t even begin to get into the topic of walking barefoot). We never walked around the house without clothes in front of each other. That was completely a taboo. I remember taking showers with my best friend, Frances, when we were 7 and wearing swimsuits in the tub. Even as a young child of 3, at the beach I was never allowed to run around nude or without a top. Breasts were something we never talked about. They were something that needed to be covered up at all times no matter how old you were.
I never thought I would have missed it, but on my first day at my new job, the beauty of wood-trimmed cubicle walls, the luminous fluorescent lights hanging overhead, and the feel of high pile carpet underneath my high heels was a sight for sore eyes. As I strolled down the hallway towards my new office, lyrics to a song bounced in my head, It’s a new dawn, it’s new a day, it’s new life for me, and I’m feeling good.
In my professional career, I have always been the type of person who worked diligently, produced good work, and excelled in my roles. I always assumed that by doing a great job I would automatically be rewarded, promoted, and given that coveted pat on the back. After all, weren’t we always taught – especially women – that good things come to those who wait? So why was it that individuals in the workplace, who were inept and inefficient at their jobs, somehow move up the corporate ladder and succeed time and time again? Believe me, I have experienced my share of this and have always had the same question pinging in my head. Does the leadership not see what seems so clear to me?
Armed with my bachelor's of science in Journalism, I have navigated through nine job moves, 15 bosses, and a plethora of business colleagues that have shaped who I am professionally today. Incredibly, this year marks 20 years since I graduated from college, and I still have a lot to learn.
You could say it was my 15 minutes of fame back in 1997 when I stood on the front steps of the Miami Beach Police Department shielding my eyes from the South Florida sun as I stared into the lens of a TV camera. I had a plastic device nestled into my ear with a live feed from news anchors in Atlanta who quickly rattled out questions about the unfolding high-profile serial killer saga involving the murder of Italian designer Gianni Versace on the steps of his Ocean Drive mansion.