EPISODE
3
Thriving in Ambiguity

It’s no secret that the responsibilities of Strategy and Operations leaders can look different at every company. While there are foundational parts of the role at every organization, we will often hear the phrase, ‘no two operations roles are the same.’ 

This quote is especially true in the Chief of Staff position. 

In addition to the Chief of Staff role being one that is often finding new initiatives and taking those from zero to one, the position itself is simply a newer role for most organizations. 

As we’ve heard time and time again on Aspiring Ops, from leaders like Ben Battaglia at Lessonly or Bynn Michelich at Jellyvision, building the Chief of Staff position at a company for the first time comes with volunteering for everything and being willing to step into the unknown.

For our recent guest on Aspiring Ops, Rajsi Rana, building something from scratch and stepping into ambiguity has never been an issue. In fact, it’s something she’s sought out in her career. 

On the latest episode of Aspiring Ops, Rajsi shares how her willingness to take on new initiatives within Amazon and Oracle gave her a bird's eye view into a number of different areas of a business, and led her to the Chief of Staff position at Skyflow. 

From how her product background helps shape the lens through which she views the Chief of Staff role to advice any aspiring strategy and operations leader should ask themselves before stepping into the position, Rajsi provides a great blueprint for how to find success in the role. 


Our Takeaway

We often get asked what someone looking to get into strategy and operations should think about before making the transition. Unfortunately, because strategy and operations positions, and the Chief of Staff role specifically, can look so unique for each company, it can be hard to get a clear answer. However, we loved how easily Rajsi broke down this question for us. 

For Rajsi, the first question should be pretty simple, “Do you like ambiguity? Do you tolerate ambiguity or do you thrive in it?”

If you are someone who thrives in ambiguity, then comes the deeper question, “Why do you want to go into this role?” 

As we discussed in the interview, the Chief of Staff position can be really difficult and isolating at times. It’s in those moments that your foundation for ‘Why’ can help weather the storm and take a step back to understand the impact you’re having across the entire business. 

For those looking to step into the position purely out of the desire to have a C-level title or take on a position that has access to important information, the difficulty of the role may quickly erode the surface level reason for taking on the role in the first place.  

Whether you are in the role today or looking to step into a Chief of Staff position, it’s important to be honest about how you react to ambiguity and understand the ‘Why’ behind your decision to make the move into strategy and operations. 

Interested in learning more about Skyflow? Check out their site here

Want to learn more about how Elate is working with other strategy and ops leaders? Request a sneak peek today.

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