Job shadowing an executive for an entire day is something I had never tried before in my career development journey. However, my supervisor encouraged me to be bold and try. Fortunately, Andrew Imperato, Executive Director at Association of University Centers on Disabilities (AUCD) whom she recommended agreed to let me shadow him for a day.

Andy is a respected voice on programs, policy and inclusion practices, which support people with disabilities, in the United States. On the day, I had the opportunity to attend meetings, observe leadership skills first-hand, and to network with his team at AUCD. I came away with a sincere appreciation for the complexities of a leadership role and insights that will be valuable as I continue my career.

I left AUCD with a sincere appreciation of the value of learning through first-hand observation. And a renewed commitment to always try to open my schedule to those who are eager to learn from my expertise. I encourage you to be confident and approach leaders you admire with a request to shadow them for a day. Also, to be open to those who ask the same of you.