The Career Services staff is celebrating today. On Tuesday evening our director, Patricia Rose, was presented with the Model Supervisor Award at the University of Pennsylvania’s Models of Excellence program.
Helping the committee prepare Pat’s nomination last fall, and seeing her accept this much deserved award yesterday evening reminded me of just how important a supervisor is to a person’s day-to-day satisfaction with one’s job and career success. In other words, a supervisor can help (or prevent) happiness with work, the place where you spend the great majority of your waking hours.
When I interviewed at Penn five years ago, I remember being surprised and impressed with the continuity and commitment of the staff. At the end of my interview, I asked the committee what they liked most about working at Penn Career Services. They responded, nearly in unison, “working for Pat!” This collective response was followed by examples of the way she works tirelessly to make sure her staff are well supported, but never micromanaged; how she encourages innovation and building on one’s strengths; how she models and expects both excellence in our work as well as work-life balance; and the respect she shows for each person in the office. And clearly that respect is reciprocated– we all appreciate her smarts, high energy, wisdom, caring nature, honesty, and warm sense of humor. All of these qualities have helped create one of the most productive, fun, challenging, and rewarding work environments I have had the privilege to work in. I have never had a case of the Sunday Evening Blues while working for Pat Rose, and I know most of my colleagues feel the same way.
So, what I hope for our graduating seniors and underclassmen preparing for jobs and summer internships is that they are fortunate enough to have a supervisor like Pat. Early in your career you rarely get everything on your “ideal job” wish list (challenging/rewarding work, super salary/compensation, the right employer, dream location, fine colleagues, etc.), but having a great supervisor is something to seek out, rather than something to consider as an afterthought once you’ve received an offer. A great supervisor will teach you, push you, and keep those Sunday Evening Blues at bay.
Thanks for being a great supervisor, Pat!