“A leader needs to be the ultimate utility player and the best pinch hitter in the game. Leaders need to be versatile and be able to cover-down on all positions to get the job done! If the copier needs paper — they fill it. If the trash needs to be emptied —they do it. If the boss needs coffee — they get it. Whatever it takes to assist a colleague, help your boss, and support the team. No task is too great or too small.”
“Have you ever noticed that some people just seem to land a job on Capitol Hill without even trying and here you are on your fourth unpaid internship? What should you do? First of all, before you beat yourself up, know that there’s some luck involved. And some people are just plain lucky. But you need to know how to make your own luck. So what do you do?”
“Receiving compliments and praise are nice – positive feedback is often uplifting – but we won’t reach our full potential without spending more time analyzing constructive feedback about our areas of weakness and how we can improve. The biggest barrier preventing us from capitalizing on constructive feedback is ourselves.”
“The advantage of our small size is that everyone who works in our shop has daily contact with me, and vice versa. From an employee’s point of view, having contact with senior management without having to send a memo or fly to another city provides a promising opportunity to interact with the men and women who run the business.”
“Jobs within the Beltway are built around relationships. Period. Much of the time, openings are not even publicly listed. They are discovered by word of mouth from those in the know, i.e. from another chief of staff or partnering law firm, trade association, etc. Networking thus is the key to finding opportunities, openings, and building those relationships.”
Brent Sullivan is the founder of Time On The Hill, a successful platform focused on optimal congressional and professional job searches. A former congressional staffer himself, he works with job seekers to strengthen their search strategy, sharpen their applications, and prepare for the final interview.
Blake Major is the director of federal government affairs at AIG. Previously, he worked in government affairs with the National Association of Bond Lawyers. He’s also co-founder and vice chair of the Government Affairs Industry Network (GAIN), a group that hosts career development events for DC advocacy professionals.