As the host of the B2B Leadership Podcast, I recently had the pleasure of welcoming Nadia Carta, the Head of Data Transformation at Google, to our show. Nadia is renowned for her ability to spark zeal in others, a concept she defines as re-energizing people and helping them live their lives with enthusiasm and passion.
Lessons from a 14-Year Tenure at Google
During our conversation, Nadia reflected on her 14-year tenure at Google and shared the most important lessons she has learned. She highlighted three key lessons: curiosity, authenticity, and aiming for big things.
Nadia's curiosity has allowed her to access different environments and build genuine connections with others. She emphasized the importance of being authentic and vulnerable, which has helped her build trust with her team. Lastly, Nadia talked about her desire to strive for the impossible and how it has driven her to accomplish challenging projects.
Embracing Rejection and Self-Reflection
We also discussed a recent LinkedIn post by Nadia where she shared her experience of not getting a role she had prepared for. Despite being well-prepared and receiving positive feedback, another candidate was chosen for the role. Nadia admitted feeling disappointed initially but used the experience as an opportunity for self-reflection and growth.
Discovering Passion and Purpose
Nadia's personal journey of rejection led her to discover her true passion and purpose. She sought guidance from her coach, who told her that in life, there are only three answers: yes, not yet, and something better is coming. This simple yet powerful perspective shifted Nadia's mindset. She began to meditate and journal, seeking to uncover the "something better" that she would have missed if she had gotten the promotion.
Spark Your Zeal: A Movement and a Podcast
As an action-oriented person, Nadia consulted with her business consultant and launched the movement called "Spark Your Zeal," aimed at helping people overcome inertia and pursue their dreams. She also wrote a book and started her own podcast on leadership.
When asked if she would have achieved all these things if she had gotten the promotion, Nadia confidently stated that they would not have happened. She believes that the pressure and responsibilities of the job would have consumed her time and energy, leaving no room for her personal projects.
Business with Grace
Nadia's approach to business is "business with grace," where she focuses not only on numbers and plans, but also on building a next generation of humans who find fulfillment in meaningful work. She believes that by fully putting herself out there, she is giving others permission to do the same.
The Future of Leadership
I admire Nadia's story and how she integrates seemingly different aspects of her life to create a powerful combination. I believe that this integration is the future of leadership, where individuals bring their authentic selves to the workplace and create inclusive environments where others feel safe and encouraged to do their best work.
The Importance of Personal Growth and Self-Awareness
Nadia and I discussed the importance of having a coach and engaging in daily practices for personal growth and self-awareness. Nadia emphasized the value of having external ears and eyes to keep you honest and confront you with your desires and dreams.
We both agreed that daily practices like journaling and mindfulness meditation can enhance self-awareness. I admitted that I haven't been consistent with journaling but recognized its benefits in bringing awareness. Nadia added that journaling has a proven effect on how the brain processes thoughts and recommended reviewing past entries to see progress.
Our conversation was a testament to the power of resilience, self-awareness, and the pursuit of passion. Nadia's journey is a reminder that sometimes, rejection can lead to self-discovery and the realization of dreams. As we concluded our conversation, we expressed a desire to stay connected and continue to support each other in our respective journeys.
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