Career Advice

Kisha Modica: Three Ways I Wear My Confidence to Work

Kisha Modica, Gap Inc.’s senior director of diversity and talent management, works with her team to make sure we have the right people in the right jobs at the right time to achieve our goals — and to foster a sense of belonging for every Gap Inc. employee at every level of the company. So we couldn’t help but wonder, how does she do the same for herself? Here’s what she said:

  • I bring my authentic self to the office every day. When you join a new organization, most people will tell you that the safe bet is to fit in before you stand out. I believe you exude confidence and gain credibility when you bring your authentic self to work and allow people to fall in love with who you really are.
    One of my heroes is Maya Angelou — she was one of the great voices of contemporary literature, and she didn’t get there by hiding behind her shadow or running from her past. She opened up and shared some of her darkest moments with the world. That takes confidence! A favorite quote from her: “My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor and some style.”
  • I keep in mind that everybody feels like an outsider sometimes. We’re genetically wired to belong; it’s how we survive and thrive in life — and at work, but I think it’s fair to say that we’ve all felt like an outsider at some point in our careers. Assimilating to new environments, ways of working and cultural norms can be hard. When I sense someone is trying to figure out if they belong, I reassure them that they do. Introducing them to people, seeking their input, amplifying their voice in meetings and mentoring through storytelling are all great ways to reinforce that.
  • I remind myself that I am not my job. Some of the best career advice I ever got was not to tie my self-worth and identity to my job title. For me, the rewards are all about fulfilling my life’s purpose of influencing and accelerating the economic and professional trajectory of women, people of color and all people. Sometimes I pinch myself and wonder how I got so lucky to do such important work at a time when the world needs it most.


Comments (19)

  • Being you is the best thing you could ever do! Excellent description and advice for winning on the job and in life! Kudos to you!

  • Love this article about this Phenomenal Woman! I am certain that the expertise and compassionate leadership she brings to the workplace is second to none! Love ya Sister!

  • Thrilled she’s a leader for Gap culture and for women in general! If you haven’t stopped and chatted with her, you’re missing out. Highly strategic, thoughtful, compassionate, supportive, driven and inspiring.

  • Congratulations! This is awesome and inspiring. Nothing is better than being your authentic self! Thank you for the reminder.

  • Sounds like a leader that walks the walk. Thankful for the encouraging truth and will channel your vibes for the many moments I need them – yes, every day!

  • Here’s what’s great about this; in addition to Kisha’s message, I can attest that this is very authentic of her in every way. She has a clear vision of herself and most certainly how she engages the business.
    As a former associate of Kisha, I would say I miss her leadership, but in a way social media allows her to still inspire and lead in a different way.

  • Kisha –
    I am so excited to see you walking in your skill, intellect and passion so boldly. In a world where blending in is often the unwritten rule, finding the footing and confidence to stand out can be a challenge – but times are changing. You are on the front side of that change and I am proud and eager to see where it takes us.

    It’s been said, “You can’t be what you can’t see,” so thank you for showing us that authenticity, confidence and self-worth can not only be invited, comfortable and safe in the workplace, but also a critical part of our success.

    Thank you, again.
    I’m taking notes.

  • What a great snapshot, Kisha, as you remind us to be real every day! People notice and gravitate towards those that are genuine, sincere and confident in who they are – how exciting to be a part of an organization that embraces individuality and style. Keep rocking!

  • She can and she will… watch her! You only get to live your life once, but when you do it right, once is enough… here’s to Kisha… champion of all women and a forever friend!

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