Career Adviser Spotlight: Miranda Hill encourages her advisees to always be bold and courageous
- Posted on June 28, 2021
- Estimated reading time 5 minutes
As part of Avanade’s culture of mentorship and learning, every employee is assigned a career adviser (CA) who guides them through their career, helping everyone at Avanade grow professionally and feel inspired, confident and cared for. Career Adviser Spotlights shine a light on Avanade CAs who go above and beyond for their advisees.
This post features Miranda Hill, Avanade’s Global Innovation Lead.
Based in Seattle, Miranda is CA to 3 advisees and collaborates with a global innovation network of 18 Regional Innovation Leads. She is currently reading “The Infinite Game” by Simon Sinek and recommends it to anyone who wants to geek out on perhaps the next evolution of Carol Dweck’s “Mindset.” She can’t wait to get back to traveling and waxes nostalgic about her last vacation with family, which happened to be in Spain (pictured at Parc Guell, Barcelona).
What’s the most rewarding thing about being a CA?
Helping others grow and expand their horizons, whether it’s collaborating with them to problem solve a situation, putting them on a path to enhance their skillset or moving them into new roles where they can grow and flourish.
Tell us a little about a CA (or mentor) that helped you grow professionally?
In the ol’ days 😊 I was working at a bank and preparing a deck to share with the Chief Digital Officer. I did my due diligence with stats and trends, but I held back from making a recommendation. Rather, I positioned the recommendations as options. My mentor at the time snapped me out of it and said “you know this. You know what needs to be done, so make a recommendation. They want to hear from you – what you think.” Though that was years ago, I remember it today, especially when I start to waiver in confidence.
Can you briefly describe something new you learned about yourself that resulted from interactions with advisees?
Absolutely. I remember sitting in a room having a 1:1 with a direct report. My mind was kinda all over the place and I wasn’t focused on her and what she was saying. In fact, I think I just kept checking my phone for incoming emails. She paused – rightfully so – and she said “you are a great boss, but you have to be more in the moment.” Those words from my advisee has stayed with me. I catch myself getting distracted at times, but I try to quickly get back “in the moment” so that I can listen and focus.
What work-life-balance activities do you partake in, and how would you recommend other CAs do the same?
For me, it would be yoga. Several years back, I was travelling a ton and working crazy hours, not to mention eating dinner at the weirdest times and just feeling – blah. I never really enjoyed yoga, but I found one yogi on YouTube that offered free videos with different durations – 5 min sessions, 15 min sessions, 30+ min sessions … so you are always able to work it into your day. So I committed to making time for myself…even if it was just 5-10 min a day…to take a breath, stretch and occasionally do a tree pose. With a few exceptions, I’ve been able to work this into my daily routine and I’ve even gifted yoga sessions to some of my advisees when I know that they too need a little restoration.
How do you encourage your advisees to be curious, embrace challenges, and leverage our limitless opportunities to learn?
I’m a Psychology nerd (it was one of my majors in college) and think anything can be represented as Maslow’s hierarchy. Kidding, not kidding 😊. But he said something that resonates with me, particularly now during this inflection point at Avanade, and that is: “One can choose to go back toward safety or forward toward growth. Growth must be chosen again and again; fear must be overcome again and again.” Given our growth ambitions at Avanade, we have a choice – we can stay put and stay safe, or we can be more bold and courageous. I’d like to think that our leaders and employees will choose the latter in this case. But in order to shift, we need to have a growth mindset and one of the pillars of growth mindset is knowing that you are in the driver’s seat when it comes to honing your abilities. And of course to do that, you have to continuously learn. From an Avanade perspective, we have so many options for limitless learning – whether it’s the client story series or !nnovate Fest which took place in March. These learning opportunities provide a great way to lift ourselves out of the today and think about things in a new light – whether that be new client challenges, new ways of approaching work, or even new ways of approaching a solution, so that you can stay ahead of the curve.
You lead the !nnovate Fest event series – what would you want other CAs to know about this program?
This year’s !nnovate Fest and the Global Innovation Contest packed a one-two punch to get real world experience of Avanade’s growth priorities into the hands of our employees. There is no better way to learn about this than through !nnovate Fest and the subsequent Global Innovation Contest that will launch post the educational component. Plus, there are rewards! Active !nnovate participants will earn badges to include in their performance stories, certificates of completion sent to CAs, among other prizes. And Global Innovation Contest participants will get to apply what they learned from !nnovate and put that into practice by solving real world challenges brought to us by a panel of our high priority clients across Avanade.
Thanks, Miranda, for being an effective career adviser, a role model, and a leader of Avanade innovation!