4 Ways To Create Your Own Opportunities At Work
As soon as Renata Amaral, CEO and founder of creative studio EAT, earned her bachelor’s degree in Brazil, she bought a one-way ticket to Los Angeles and enrolled in UCLA to work on a master’s degree in public relations and entertainment publicity. She hoped to land a job or internship at a local creative firm, but no one would hire her, so she ended up cobbling together a bunch of part-time, minimum-wage jobs.
Eventually Amaral got so fed up with working at fast food restaurants and delivering pizza that she decided to put all her energy into creating her own firm. “If those dozens of companies weren’t interested in giving me a chance at their companies, I would create my own opportunity,” she says.
In 2009, Amaral opened EAT with her brother Eduardo Amaral and good friend Gabriel Seibel. Today EAT has grown to a team of twelve with offices in the United States, Brazil, France, Germany, Ireland, Spain and Portugal. The firm works with major brands including Red Bull, Disney, EA Games, NBC Universal, Warner Brother Records, Tumblr, Samsung, Doritos and Hershey’s.
Rather than waiting for someone to give her an opportunity, Amaral decided to create her own opportunity to succeed. Whether it’s starting your own business, asking for a promotion or learning a new skill, creating your own opportunity can be scary. Amaral offers advice for millennial and gen-Z employees on how to build your own opportunities for success.
Finding your passion can take time. If you focus on the negative and your doubts, it will be difficult to move forward, Amaral says. Instead, focus on your skills and your talent.
Find good people.
Look for coworkers and friends who are on the same path and can help inspire and motivate you to do your best."Pairing with my brother and friend to complete the ideation of our business reignited the fire in me to bring EAT to success and persevere in a hard-to-break-into industry of design,” Amaral says.
Build your own doors.
Amaral came to the United States hoping to get a foot in the door at a creative firm but she kept getting turned away. “I felt more discrimination being foreign-born than being a woman,” she says. When doors weren’t opening, Amaral decided to build her own. The best way to do that is to meet as many people as you can, she says. Take classes out of your comfort zone, attend networking events and lectures, and surround yourself with experts.
Don’t underestimate the power of over delivering on your tasks and finishing your work ahead of schedule, especially with a new boss or client. Word will spread about your dedication and work ethic, which will lead to more referrals down the road, Amaral says.
This Article Originally Appeared on forbes.com