Renee Stackhouse is no stranger when it comes to overcoming fears and facing challenges. She spent 2 years in the Navy as an Operation Specialist during a time when females were just permitted to serve on destroyer ships. Stackhouse charted new territory as she was the 5th female to be aboard the Destroyer USS Kinkaid-DD965. Today, she’s leading the way for her sales team as a Comcast Territory Sales Manager for Xfinity Sales.
But it was her “gift of gab” as she calls it, that lead her to a career in sales. “I loved talking to people who would listen and having the joy of studying people’s reactions to what I was saying or things in general,” says Stackhouse.
While it was her outgoing personality that launched her sales career, Stackhouse shares how confidence and honing in on your natural abilities and using them to your advantage is the secret to growing your career:
Leverage natural abilities. Are you a problem solver? Nurturer? Even traits that aren’t typically thought of as a benefit in the business world, can be used to help further your career. “Traits such as wanting to heal any and all problems or nurturers, are actually great,” explains Stackhouse. “Use it in a way to develop others.”
Be true to self. “It’s easy to get lost in the competitive environment of sales,” says Stackhouse. She advises people to forget about the “dog eat dog” competitive nature and focus on you. Stackhouse constantly asks herself questions when it comes to making decisions during your career journey – is this in line with the person I’m striving to become, will this take me out of my comfort zone to grow myself, am I making I opening the doors for others, etc. “I find myself often asking questions to not only keep myself checked and in line, but to make sure I’m leaving the doors open for other diverse individuals to follow,” says Stackhouse.
Overcome Fear. Sales is a competitive market, notes Stackhouse, and fear can stifle growth or potential. This is particularly true for women, as it’s still a male dominated field. But Stackhouse encourages others to face fear head on, as it builds growth, character, stamina, and courage. “It’s ok to speak up but do it with class.”
Stackhouse also points to Comcast’s commitment to diversity and inclusion as an important component to building a successful career-not just in sales, but in all fields. “Comcast, as long as I can remember, has been a company who embraces diversity of all kinds,” notes Stackhouse. “A diverse organization grows and prospers because of different points of views and opinions from all.”