(2) Catherine AllenIn this seven-part series, we’ll talk with Catherine Allen, Senior Vice President in our Boston office, and look in-depth at what each of the 7 core values means and how they affect our work, our clients, our employees, and our community. In this post, we look at what it means to be dedicated at SHIFT.

Dedicated is going to, above and beyond. If you have an idea, you work the idea until it’s done, until it’s doing what it’s supposed to be doing. That might mean working late, working extra, whatever is needed of you by your team to get it done. Dedicated can mean seeing a news story on at night and you have this “always on” mindset, have this idea that you jot down or send off to your team even though it’s late at night.

Dedicated is helping a team member who needs help, who is struggling, even as you work to get your own stuff done. It’s asking, “how can I help”, not resting when your stuff is done, but pitching in wherever you can to help other teams. You could be going home, but you stick around to get it done. You volunteer for things at work outside your typical duties if you have the bandwidth to do so, because you know it’s to the greater benefit of everyone.

There’s an order to being dedicated – to your team, to your manager, to SHIFT, to your clients, and ultimately to your community. How can you do the most good, and what will it take to do it? For example, if a new business opportunity comes in that would be great for your team but another team needs it more and would be a better fit, you pass on it. You help others win first, because ultimately it helps the entire firm the most, does the most good. Sometimes you have a client that’s just not a fit at all, and dedicated might mean making the choice to part ways with that client, even though it will increase your team’s hardship in the short term, because it will do the most good for you and for the client in the long term.

Dedicated means going above and beyond the scope of what’s written in a job description. From new business travel all over the place to networking at events in your free time, dedicated means doing as much as you reasonably can in order to advance yourself, your team, the agency, your clients, everyone. It doesn’t mean living out of balance or giving 110% all the time, but it does mean that where and when you can give extra without causing yourself harm, you make the choice to give extra.

Catherine H. Allen
Executive Vice President


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