100 Days as a Gumie: From Restrained to Rambunctious
I am thrilled to be working with magical, fun, audacious, and incredibly intelligent people. I know how this reads like the ending sentence but I really couldn’t think of a better way to start this reflective piece than with the end. With that being said, let’s go back to the beginning.
I joined Gumi as a Solution Delivery Manager. It is my first job since taking a 4-month career break which was part of a plan to switch career paths. I had spent most of my professional life till date at a single firm, a healthcare company. My academic background is also deeply healthcare focused. Before Gumi, my career blueprint was:
Biomedical sciences >> healthcare administration/operations management >> healthcare policy >> healthcare systems strengthening >>>>> retire working for an IGO like the WHO.
There is nothing wrong at all with being a sector specialist, I still am one. However, it made me very worried about how this transition would work out. To me, being offered this position was a huge gamble, one I felt would lean more towards a loss than a win- for the firm and I. It was difficult imagining how I, with a strong healthcare background, would succeed at a purely professional services firm with no specific sector affiliations, that advises and supports companies of all sizes, and from all sectors in their people operations, digital transformation, and product management activities.
Now, guess what happened? I wasn’t the only one. The whole team was made up of brilliant minds from diverse educational and professional backgrounds: there was a trained chemical engineer who had worked in an oil company but is an exceptional product manager, an international relations graduate who leads the knowledge and communications team, and a science and technology graduate that creates amazing digital content designs. That was the first warm welcome- that I wasn’t the odd one out.
A few months in and I was developing product development roadmaps, proofreading and copyediting articles, creating project briefs, and even writing about innovation and digital economies. The learning curve was steep.
And that is one of the things I love the most about working at Gumi & Company: you will never stop learning. The learning and development culture is deeply rooted in the organization, it even forms a significant chunk of our thirdly performance reviews. Yes, thirdly. Where the typical business year is divided into quarters made up of 3 months per quarter, a Gumi business year is divided into thirds, so that 4 months make a third and there are 3 thirds per year. That is the next thing I love about Gumi- we walk the walk and talk the talk about being innovative.
100 days in and I must say, I enjoy being a generalist. I have envisioned a new career path that will ensure I continue to develop versatile, valuable, and future-ready skills and knowledge that are highly transferable.
I am still very passionate about driving health and social impact, and I am thrilled to be working with magical, fun, audacious, and incredibly intelligent people who are too.
Thank you for the opportunity.