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Kevonna McAnuff Talks Leadership, Millennial Myths and Her Quest for the C-Suite

Starting her day at 5:00am with prayer, stretching and meditation, Kevonna knows that she was born to serve a distinct purpose. The super-charged go-getter launched aPoisedProfessional in July of this year to coach and educate others on how to take charge of their careers – just as she’s done at the age of 23. What makes her happiest? Seeing other people win while finding their own happiness.

Where are you from?

Paterson, New Jersey

Where do you currently reside?

Atlanta, Georgia

Where did you attend college and what did you study?

I attended Georgia State University and majored in Managerial Sciences with a concentration in Human Resources. I minored in Spanish.

What is your current occupation?

Employee Relations Specialist

What did you aspire to be when you became an adult?

A singer – Beyonce’s Protégé

Tell us some of your favorites.

Foods: Mac & Cheese, Oxtails, Junk Food and Chocolate Chip Cookies

Vacation Spot: Costa Rica

Color: Pink

Clothing Store: H&M

Movies: Transformers Series, Fast & Furious Series

What do you like to do when you’re not working?

Watch movies, read, sleep, go to concerts and travel.

What are your pet peeves?

Dishonesty, inconsistency, pettiness, unprofessionalism and not putting things back where they belong really bother me.

What do you hope to accomplish with your new business venture, aPoisedProfessional?

I want to see more millennials take ownership of their careers and not fit the stereotypical millennial mold while falling prey to the myths. I’d like to see more corporations have courageous conversations around diversity and inclusion.

You mention millennial myths and stereotypes. Can you share what some of those are and do you agree or disagree with them?

Millennials are being called out for laziness, sense of entitlement, lack of loyalty and the need for instant gratification. I don’t agree with most of these misconceptions. The millennials I surround myself with are some of the hardest working people I know. Working full-time jobs from 9-5, then going to school from 5:30 – 10:30 pm, and coming home to work on their business/brand until 2/3 am. I admit, some of us do feel entitled and do want instant gratification. But that’s not a millennial characteristic. That’s called, “Welcome to America”. Americans, as a whole, have a sense of entitlement as we believe we are the best country on the planet and everybody should be more like us. Americans want what we want – and we want it NOW. If a 40-year-old waits more than 5 minutes for his Starbucks grande latte, he has a fit! Yes – we move around from company to company often. However, that’s because we have the opportunities now to take the risks that older generations can’t. On average, we are getting married and having children 8 years later than our parents did, which allows us the freedom to leave a job if we no longer like it as opposed to staying there for 30 years being miserable. We’re grateful for our jobs but we just don’t allow organizations to feel as though they are our only option in order to succeed.

Who are your influencers?

Beyoncé, Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel and Claire Huxtable

What motivates you?

Knowing that my being, my uniqueness, my talents, my abilities, and my personality serve a greater purpose. I have an assignment placed on my life and I won’t stop until I complete it.

If you had the power to change one thing in the world, at this very moment, what would it be?

The removal of hatred. There are too many people in the world who are filled with it.

How do you define leadership?

I define leadership as influential, visionary, strategic, humility and disruption.

What characteristics do people need to possess to make monumental moves in life?

They should exercise faith over fear and boldness. They should also remain positive and set strategic/realistic goals.

What reading materials would you recommend to aspiring professionals?

Lean In – Sheryl Sandberg

Year of Yes – Shonda Rhimes

13 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do – Amy Morin

You are a Badass – Jen Sincero

What advice can you offer to other young professionals?

I would advise us to respect titles but don’t be intimidated by them. Be patient. Take advantage of the resources around you and that will create opportunities for you. Perform in every role/position as if it is too small for your talents and abilities. Remain grateful.

What is success to you?

Completing the assignment placed on my life, living my passion and doing meaningful work are all successes to me. Writing the vision down, making it plain, and seeing it come to fruition – that’s success.

What keeps you awake at night?

My big dreams! I want to one day make it to the C-Suite to change organizational politics. I want to speak all over the world at sold out arenas. I want to launch my professional clothing line in department stores. I want to witness the community impact of my non-profit. I want to own a hotel. And I want to be married to a God-fearing man who loves me unconditionally!

How are you preparing for 2018?

I am already creating my 2018 vision board, developing my career roadmap (5-year goal with next 18-month action plan) and setting aPoisedProfessional’s key performance objectives and priorities for 2018.

What can guests expect to take away from your workshops at Heels & Headshots Professional Mixer on November 18th?

Guests will walk away with an action plan on how they can be more daring in 2018. They will also learn the key to making a career transition happen.

Describe your “power pump”.

My red bottoms – they make me feel like I can conquer the world!

Where can readers follow you on social media?

@apoisedprofessional and @_chilibean on Instagram

Kevonna McAnuff on LinkedIn


 

Kevonna will be presenting her topics “Get Unstuck: Career Transitions and How to Make Them Happen” and “Dare to Set the Target High: Why Confidence is Paramount to Getting Ahead” during Heels & Headshots in Atlanta on Saturday, November 18th. Learn more about the event at www.HeelsandHeadshots.com.

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