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Stay uncomfortable to get ahead, Mars exec says

Tracey Wood
Women who want to advance their careers should tap into their curiosity, get out of their comfort zone and leverage their connections, according to Tracey Wood, vice president of people and organization for Mars Wrigley Confectionery, Americas.
A career is “not a road map or black-and-white linear experience,” Wood told 1,200 leaders at the NEW Leadership Summit, Sept. 27 in Washington D.C.
“People ask me for advice for career planning and I tell them it’s best to plan for certain roles, but also take advantage of opportunities as they arise,” Wood said. “Be constantly curious and get to know people and their stories. Curiosity breeds creativity, which breeds innovation.”
To grow, develop and have a successful career, she said, “you want to put yourself outside your comfort zone as much as possible. Find yourself and grow there.”
Emphasizing about the importance of building a network, Wood said, “We take years to build our network, but we don’t always nurture them fully.”
At events like the NEW Leadership Summit, people leave inspired, energized — and with a stack of business cards. “Think about how you connect with those people and how you choose the people you can forge a deeper relationship with,” Wood advised. “Reaching out and getting different perspectives helps us as leaders and as people.”
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