March 2019

All I Needed To Know I Learned at Briljent

By Kasia Forsyth

Okay, okay. Maybe that’s a stretch, but hear me out. I have been with Briljent for 10 years. Nowadays that is like an eternity! Briljent has been with me through dating and marriage, the passing of family members, selling a house, buying a house, building a house, breast cancer, my son growing into a young man, and many other important life events. It’s interesting as I reflect on the past 10 years how Briljent has had an influence on me and how I’ve grown. I may not have learned everything I know from Briljent, but I’m glad to say that because of Briljent, I’m not the same today as I was 10 years ago.

So, what have I learned? Glad you asked.

I’ve learned that I should always be learning. And boy, have I been given the opportunity to do that here at Briljent. Certifications in project management and change management, new projects, changing scope, competing deliverables, new markets, a variety of clients and personalities, tight deadlines–it has all been a challenge, but I cherish these experiences and will be forever grateful for the growth that came from them. Why? Because it has stretched me, molded me, given me new perspectives, and provided me hands-on knowledge that I can’t put a price on. I now understand that being a Learning Leader is important for my growth both in business and my personal life. It may not always feel good at the time, but I can look back at the pain and discomfort and I see the purpose and growth in it. And that, my friends, is a beautiful thing.

Keeping my chin up and carrying on is a trait I think I may have been born with, but I’ve definitely had the opportunity to flex that muscle here at Briljent. There’s just something about managing projects in multiple states (Alaska, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Missouri, Mississippi, Nebraska, New York, Oklahoma, and West Virginia just to name a few) and leading 50+ projects within the state of Indiana that keeps you moving forward. The great work Briljent undertakes does not stop and it’s allowed me to learn how to push through and keep moving my projects forward. What’s cool is that I’ve had this awesome front row seat to Briljent’s perseverance in hard times, lean times, and times of change.  What I’ve witnessed is a team pulling together, working to make due dates and budgets, picking each other up, and carrying on. So, when breast cancer came knocking on my door, I got to live one of Briljent’s core values: Never, Never, Never Give Up. That value held behind it a tremendous network that stood beside me in my battle to make sure I was encouraged and didn’t lose hope. That network included friends, family, my God, and my Briljent family. I can’t put into words the gratitude I have for my Briljent colleagues, who have been a humongous blessing to me.

Speaking of our core values, I’ve learned to just Deal With It and by that I mean I have learned it’s best to not avoid something just because it’s difficult. Life isn’t easy. Clients can be challenging. Relationships are hard. Communication can be difficult and all of these things are compounded when you avoid it instead of dealing with it. Many times our own pride, stubbornness, fear or anxiety keep us from having the difficult conversations, being clear in our expectations, or working on the problem at hand. I’ve learned that if you let it sit, it will fester like an ugly sore. As difficult as it is, it’s usually easier to deal with it than the consequences of not dealing with it. So, lesson learned, deal with it today. The longer you wait, the uglier it becomes.

Briljent has been a great example of giving generously. We have a saying here: To Whom Much Is Given, Much Is Required. I like that. It’s a reminder to me that I am blessed and should be a blessing to others. I like to think of myself as a giver, but honestly, it’s usually not to the extent that it inconveniences me too much. I’m still working on that. I can say that I’m extremely proud to work for a company that values generosity and compassion. Briljent, through The Luminous Fund, recently gave $119,874 to 30 agencies located in cities in which employees live and work. Why? Because they feel it’s important to give back. I’m so amazed by this and I love the example they provide.

I’ve talked a lot about what I’ve learned, but one last thing. Do you know what I love? Well, besides my husband, kids, doggies, chocolate, and the beach… I also love that Briljent has a list of Non-Negotiable Items (NNIs). It’s a list of foundational expectations that are at the core of who Briljent is. It was created to keep our culture alive and well and it’s a list I refer to often because it’s something I believe in and strive for. I believe that when we are all focused on the NNIs, it makes us a better company. I’ve peppered in a few of the NNIs throughout this blog (see my bolded words). I hope you find my examples a living testament to how I’ve grown by applying them. To see a complete list of our NNIs for yourself, navigate to Briljent’s Careers page and scroll down.

Thanks for reading! And to Briljent, I say thank you for 10 pretty incredible years. Here’s to the next 10!

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