Susan Jaworski

by Susan Jaworski Director, New Technology Introduction IBM Systems & Technology Group

Susan Jaworski

Susan Jaworski

Dear Susie,
You are very lucky in life and you will use it well. You already know you have a wonderful supportive family with seven brothers and four sisters. You will learn that you have been blessed with many great skills like math, logic, spatial ability, and maybe the most valuable… you don’t just adapt well to change, you thrive on making it happen.
You will learn, and I know it doesn’t feel like it now, someone was giving you a gift when they placed you younger than six brothers. It will teach you many things, like not to be afraid of confrontation, and that you have to work hard for you position in life. Given the year, you will live in a man’s world, but you will barely notice. And then of course, a gift that only brothers can give, you will also expect respect from everyone (except them), because as a young girl, no one will ever get near you unless they give you that respect. Oh, another thing… it takes a bit, but after about 20 years they stop calling you bossy and just call you boss.

It is the ‘people’ in life that make the difference.
Enjoy who you are. There will be times that you question yourself, who are you, why are you here, what path should you choose? These thoughts will unnerve you at times, but it will pass. This is part of who you are, stay true to who you are and follow that path you choose. Don’t let other’s views of what is right, wrong, or what has always been done cause you to stray from your path. Remember, no one really knows what is possible, so you might as well explore for yourself.
Set your goals. It is amazing what happens when you just keep stepping towards them. Say your goals out loud. Yes, I want to be an executive for IBM. My goal will be to build valuable skills for 10 years, since my twins are 7 today.
I will want to be the best choice for the role then. What is amazing is, although some will discard your goals as nonsense, when others hear your goals, they will add them to theirs! And, when you hear other’s goals, you will add them to yours. You will find that every goal that you achieve, someone, some way, with a different, better skill, insight, or position helps you to that goal.
It is the ‘people’ in life that make the difference.
Your happiest days and your toughest task will be raising your preschool children… that’s right, you had two already and then twins! …you thought you were a multi-tasker, you have seen nothing… your day begins before you pull the covers off, and ends… wait! isn’t there supposed to be sleep? There is no task that doesn’t get interrupted, everything is falling off the plate, your standards are dropping… and then, ah hah! You learn what prioritization really is… the children are clean, fed, there are paths through the house and your children are playing, exploring… cherish them! You are the queen; you get a number 1 rating every day, delivered in hugs and kisses.
You have learned amazing lessons, but your children have learned a few too, you now have 4 new managers in the house; let them take care of it. It is time for new goals!
For someone who was born with skills that would be classified as concrete, where you will grow and learn the most is feeding your desire to make change happen. This will lead you to learn about people, the antithesis of concrete.
How amazing individuals are! And, that the impossible happens only because of individuals and groups of people. It even happens despite all our individual weaknesses. Grow these skills and there is no stopping what you will achieve.

I will leave you with one last thought… life is long and there is time for a great deal, use that to your advantage… but remember, there is not time for everything… use that to focus.
And, did I tell you that it is the ‘people’ in life that make the difference? With deepest sincerity and love, enjoy life.
Your older self,

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