Robert Frost penned a famous poem entitled “The Road Not Taken.” In its opening lines, he wrote, “Two roads diverged in a yellow wood, / And sorry I could not travel both.”
This sentiment describes the complexity of determining what one would consider the best and correct path for their future. Is it the more popular route marked by traditional pathways and methods for navigating? Or is it the less-common experience that requires more intuition and patience?
Previously, the definition of success was based on certain outcomes — particularly in how people navigate their career journey. Today, definitions are more nuanced based on experience and expectations.
T. Rowe Price, a global investment firm, understands that creating spaces for continued development and career success is not an act of fate. It takes introspection, dedicated resources and programming to ensure team members feel equipped to tackle their goals.
AfroTech had the chance to learn the value of success from three T. Rowe Price team members and how the firm has positioned itself as an ally for their future.
In Cheral Mirasevic’s world, survival was at the top of her mind. For her, growing up, getting an education and securing a job to take care of her family was the path ingrained in her brain. And when she first joined T. Rowe Price at 19 years old, her perspective was the same — her role was just a job.
However, after her niece was born, that perspective drastically shifted. Now, Mirasevic’s definition of success has evolved to be inclusive of those who are connected to her.
“My definition of success revolves around who benefits from my success. Investing in my niece motivates me from a legacy point of view. For example, the 529 college plan I set up will allow her to have experiences I did not have. My niece would mention college from an early age, and now she will have that experience,” Mirasevic explained.
Introspection and connection to one’s deeper self are how Thais Jackson defines success. She believes a solid moral code and a positive mindset are key to success. She also puts a focus on having a high level of patience for incremental wins.
“Success is a desire that comes from within me [and] is focused on professional goals. I have an ambitious, practical mindset; I focus on my desired outcome and subscribe to the belief that taking small steps leads to big results,” Jackson said.
Awards, accolades and accomplishments were the textbook characterizations of success as far as it concerned Will Little. Leveraging the assistance of his mentors, Little used the tools he learned to gain prestigious accolades that aligned with his thoughts about success.
Doing well in school and getting a good job was the easy, if narrow, path Little imagined he needed to take. As he got older, he learned that the idea of succeeding was much more nuanced than his childhood ideas.
“Looking at college rankings and internship prestige was something I used to track, but as I began to dig into how these rankings were calculated, I realized they don’t make much sense and cannot be applied with a broad brush,” Little stated. He began to question what really makes a “good school” or a “good job.”
With more time, life experiences and research, Little realized that, for him, success was much more than the superficial notions society claims are the only results of a successful life. While accolades have great merit, success for Little is rooted in the fulfillment of purpose.
“Being fulfilled is success in my eyes, and this can often clash with how the world views success. All that matters in life is your level of happiness and how your actions affect others. We only get one chance to live our lives, and I think true success is finding happiness in what you are doing and helping others achieve that same feeling,” Little added.
Partners in the Journey
With varying views around success and how it is achieved, T. Rowe Price is making sure it curates a culture that supports the diverse perspectives of its team members.
Jackson has a very direct career path: becoming an RFP Editor. Taking intentional steps and serving in roles to support this path, T. Rowe Price makes sure Jackson has the skill set and toolbox necessary to navigate her dream role successfully.
“By focusing on slow and steady progress, I joined several teams to strengthen my skills for the role. I took a role as a Content Manager, and now I’m an Associate RFP Editor. I told my manager my next move is the RFP Editor position, so we are working on getting there. Slow and steady wins the race,” Jackson remarked.
For Mirasevic, T. Rowe Price walked with her on her journey to gaining a deeper understanding of success and how her work is about more than her. Leaning on the wisdom of mentors, Mirasevic has implemented the advice of her network and is paying it forward to those coming behind her.
“Whether through benefits or relationships, you know when a company is invested in your growth. You are hired to do a job, but you stay because of the relationship,” she said.
As T. Rowe continues to provide space for its employees’ growth and development, the most important note is that people are equipped with tools to figure out which path is best for them — just as Robert Frost concluded in his poem:
“Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.”
To learn more about how T. Rowe Price is committed to the success of its employees and how you can be a part of that path, click here.