From ANTM to ANTP! How You Can Evolve Your Career Like Tyra Banks

NEW YORK TIMES MAGAZINE BY: RUVEN AFANADOR, 2008  Tyra showing off her classiness, her spirit, her glamour, and her curves.


Tyra showing off her classiness, her spirit, her glamour, and her curves.

Sitting in front of the television screen as a young child, I remember watching America’s Next Top Model and wondering if I could ever “be on top” like Tyra Banks. “How did she become so successful?”, “Could I be like Tyra?”. As a young child, I didn’t understand that the first step to success is belief. With belief and faith, anything can be achieved, and Tyra continues to remind of us this!

Tyra is known for being an international model, television personality, producer, actress, author and recent mom. Her dedication and charismatic personality allowed her to attract the world! However, Banks decided that the runway and talk show host life was not her end all be all. So, she furthered herself by attending Harvard Business School to learn about proper business practices. By obtaining her diploma, Banks showcased her ability to be influential in different arenas.

The recent Stanford Professor is a true trail blazer who is not letting anything sidetrack her from her success. Banks is dominating the fashion, entertainment, and education industries. She has shown what it truly takes to move your career to the next level! But there is no need to wish for Banks successes because you can achieve too by adhering to these few steps:


1. Understand What Moves You


As the famous Nina Simone reminded us in her 1968 classic “you gotta do what you gotta do”. Everyone has a unique journey and story that has guided them throughout their career. Having an understanding of where you’re at now and where you want to go is essential to evolving your career. Without vision, clarity, & focus, your dreams could turn into a disaster. I enjoy asking clients questions such as, “what is propelling you to wake up in the morning?” “what is your work history?” “If you could do anything in the world what would it be?” This process can definitely be timely as it can take some time to identify a niche. And, honestly, this process SHOULD be timely because people gain valuable knowledge by taking time with themselves to unearth what they are truly seeking. Tyra had to do the same thing, and you see how her success story turned out! Anyone can have a similar story, but it takes time dedication, and effort.


2. Research Your Field


By researching and drawing on her previous experiences, Tyra knew that attending school was needed to further her business. She was accepted into various high caliber universities not limited to USC and UCLA, but she decided on Harvard because she knew that she wanted to be the best, and to be the best she needed to attend the school with the highest ranked business program in the world! Similar principles apply to you! Before embarking on a new journey, have some background knowledge about your area of interest. So, if you’re unemployed, find industries that coincide with your passion and dive deep into the learning process. Understand the trends, what employers are looking for in desirable candidates, the culture, etc. By staying committed and focused you will receive results, but the key is to not become discouraged. Remember you must put in effort to reach success.


3. You MUST Network!


As I love to tell my clients, you need to Show Up & Show Out, and this is exactly what Tyra has done for decades! Tyra gained traction from obtaining her diploma and becoming a professor because she has influence! People know who she is and what she has accomplished! From an early age, Banks was able to evolve her career by standing out and being seen! This method is gold to people who are evolving their careers. The old methods of reaching out to people (applying through job boards, waiting at home on your couch for people to call, etc) are slowly fading away because networking is the new hot commodity that people are taking advantage of. Attending workshops, conferences, retreats, even meeting people in public are all guaranteed methods for connecting with new people and getting your name out in the market. Remember to be very strategic and creative when approaching this method because the goal is to make connections and leave a positive & lasting impact on people.


4. Incorporate Positivity into Your Lifestyle


You gain so much more when you are positive! Tyra didn’t gain her successes by being a negative Nancy; she stayed driven and focused on her vision. One of the themes, you should take from this post is that things take time (I cannot adhere to that enough!!) However, it is important to enjoy your process because you will learn a lot about yourself. Maybe, you’re in desperate need of work and after the first few weeks of applying for jobs, you have not received any calls from employers. Don’t get frustrated! Use this as a learning lesson because, more than likely, your resume needs to be updated and tailored to the open positions. By learning from your process instead of placing an abundance of stress on yourself, you are able to grow and see your vision more clearly.


While Tyra is successful, she continues to learn and grow, but she would not be at her current level of success if she did not have the vision, dedication, and persistence that led her to pursuing her modeling career. You can achieve success as well by following and staying committed to these principles. Not only do you need to ask yourself WHAT you want, but how BAD you want it and WHEN?!


Want to learn more about how to Stand Out and Be On Top like Tyra? Check out my FREE Six Strategies For Standing Out Amongst The Masses.