The Best Career Advice We’ve Ever Received

No matter how seasoned you are in your career path, you’re constantly facing challenges that further develop your skills, knowledge and intuition. Here at Team Zoe, we’re all about championing one another (and all women) to reach our greatest potential at work, and that means sharing wisdom we’ve picked up along the way—whether adopted from a boss, read in a book or learned by experience. As women in an industry that requires gumption, dedication and perseverance through often unglamorous times (despite what the media portrays), we’ve accumulated a slew of valuable lessons. Ahead, 11 editors share their best advice for kicking ass in your 9 to 5 and beyond.

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Career Mantras To Live By

"Every mentor I had in my teens—my parents included—saw the benefit of getting hands-on experience in this industry. A can-do attitude and hard work during an internship can set the course for your professional future, as it did with mine."

—Kristi Mikesky, Features Editor

"Do what you love and the money will come. That's from my mom, and she's said it since I was a little girl. I'm still waiting for the money, though."

—Erin Nicole, Lifestyle Editor

"I made a career switch that was seemingly unlikely to pan out, but I was diligently focused on my end goal and found my dream job."

—Laura Lajiness, New York Editor

"My favorite quote is from my woman crush/career muse Leandra Medine: 'If you're the smartest person in the room, you're in the wrong room.'"

—Leah Benzie, Social Media Editor

"Set goals. Do your absolute best, and it will absolutely be enough. But at the end of the day, know that as much as you may plan, you never know what opportunities are going to come your way, so be open to anything and everything."

—Zoe Ward, Branded Content Coordinator

"No matter what position you're in, it's so important to be a team player and take pride in your work. If you're an intern and find yourself making coffee runs for your boss, do it with a smile and make her remember how good you were at it. If you can stand out while getting coffee, she'll trust you to do bigger and better things."

—Stephanie Montes, Senior Beauty Editor

"Don’t act entitled. Never say, 'It's not my job' or 'I can't do that' or 'I’m not in charge of that.' Try to figure it out. The small things you learn will help you in the long run and will be additional skills you take with you to your next job. Always present solutions rather than excuses."

—Christian David, Art Director

"Take initiative and pay attention to details—figure out how to use the resources around you to find solutions. This helps you stay a step ahead and anticipate what your team needs, allowing you to stand out as an efficient, productive person."

—Amy Lee, Associate Fashion Editor

"The best career advice I've ever received is to never knock others out of your way to get to the top. This industry relies heavily on collaboration. The last thing you want is to leave a bad taste in anyone's mouth. You never know who might be in a position to help you or work with you in the future."

—Andrea Navarro, Associate Beauty Editor

"Best said by Amy Poehler, 'Find a group of people who challenge and inspire you, spend a lot of time with them, and it will change your life.'"

—Natalie Zurawin, Associate Producer

"If you aren't proactive about your own growth, no one else will be! Ask about big-picture projects, take superiors to coffee and show a genuine interest in learning rather than just checking off your own to-do list. When opportunities arise, people will be confident in your ability to tackle the challenge."

—Nicky Deam, Editorial Director