Seasoned HR and recruiting consultants Liz and Kat help you navigate your career and get through your work day. Go beyond the employee manual for some real job talk!
Episode 56: Real Leadership with Jennifer Mackin
LIZ AND KAT ARE OFFERING CAREER COACHING!!! Our intro rate is $100/hr for BOTH of us! Email firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule a 1:1 unrecorded session.
Welcome Jennifer Mackin, author of the book Leaders Deserve Better, and a trainer who helps managers become better leaders. Jennifer considers herself a change agent dedicated to helping businesses and leaders be change agents for the greater good.
2020 forced leaders to reflect and change, which became a tough opportunity for Jennifer. She had to pivot from face-to-face to virtual, and has had to embrace change.
We asked Jennifer what leadership means to her. She thinks of leaders whose job is to develop and lead others. She refers to people who others listen to as influencers, but in her work, she is working with people who have direct management responsibilities over other employees.
Jennifer found that most people are put into leadership roles without any leadership training, and then they struggle to lead effectively. What causes people to struggle? They don’t know how to coach, manage performance and do regular work with their team. BUT, the issue is also in the c-suite where leaders aren’t tying activities like people management and growth into business goals. Not only are they not training their leaders to lead, they’re not helping their people grow or tying their entire team into the success of the business.
Leaders of leaders need to drive an environment of learning, practice and reinforcement within our organizations. Leaders tend to delegate and be task oriented, but not think about overall succession, people and skill growth. Sharing new knowledge and skills, especially in a virtual environment, is the key to showing how effective employees are in the growth in the company.
Before raising your hand for an official leadership role, take a look at who you are, what drives you, and understand the requirements of the role within your organization. After knowing what roles are possible, create a development plan for yourself to get yourself to where you need to be. Talk with your current leaders to ask them what to do to get to where you want to go- drive your career!
Look at others who have grown into leadership roles before you- what did they do? Talk to people, get feedback on what you need to do as well as get an understanding of what you will need to do to move where you want to go.
What does Jennifer see in the best teams she works with? What competencies go across organizations? Besides being strategic and ethical, the best leaders know how to drive strategy through and across their teams. They care about their people and understand how to tie business needs with people needs and people growth. It’s complex, and that’s why people like Jennifer are so important for leaders to learn from. Caring about the people and business and tying them together, and fitting all of the pieces together, celebrating differences, is what the strongest leaders do.
In interviews, when looking for good leadership at a company, see how you’re treated, how they talk about the team, and ask: what skills are valued in each role and each group at the company? Do they care about your questions and do they want to learn about you? Intentionality is key - we’re all learning, but if someone’s intentions are good and they admit what they’re working on, they have leadership potential.
Being present in conversations is so important, as is asking how someone is doing, or mentioning something they talked about before. Being seen by your leadership is a big key in happiness and engagement at work. As a leader, thinking about the combination of wellness, productivity and outcomes is key.
When you’re trying to move in your organization, you don’t want to be a suck up, and it’s important to document your successes, celebrate others, and make sure your l
Episode 55: The Art of Quitting
Quitting is an art- there’s a right way (leave with your head high and relationships strong) and a wrong way (think bull in a china shop or loud ranting with everyone breathing a sigh of relief when you’re gone) to quit your job. In this episode, Liz and Kat walk you through the delicate process of quitting, how to deal with a counter offer, and how to handle your final days at a job.
This episode was inspired by a friend of Kat’s who was quitting his job and was ready to give his almost-ex irrefutable.
Have your “quitting notice” written.
Set the goal of staying professiinonal and go out with respect.
To break it down:
You don’t want your boss to hear that you’re leaving through the rumor mill. Make sure to tell them first. It may be hard to keep the news from your work bestie, especially if everyone’s talking about leaving. The “I’m quitting, these are my last 2 weeks” conversation should be with you and your boss first.
Set up the meeting with your boss asap after signing your offer. Give your 2 week notice as soon as you can meet with your boss. Tell them you need to talk for a few minutes, and you can even tell them it’s urgent. If it can’t happen, you can go up the chain, but give every opportunity to quit to your direct manager. Try to do it in person, but if they force you to email it, you can do that, but don’t prolong the quitting moment.
We role play the conversation to make sure it stays professional and make sure to remove the emotion. Remember, you never know when you’re going to run into these people again in your career, so you want to make a professional lasting impression.
Counter offers: we’re anti 99% of the time. Why can you only get things on your way out vs when you ask as an active employee? Usually underlying issues won’t be fixed with a counter offer. Once you’ve given notice once, an employer can question your loyalty, and employees are shown to leave within 1-2 years anyway. Trust issues and resentment build up on both sides, and you can potentially burn bridges.
If you go looking for another offer to get a pay raise, DO NOT accept the other offer if you’re really looking for a counter.
See this article for more.
Fact vs emotional reason for quitting. For example, “the commute is 2 hours less/day”- fact vs “you’ve been a bad manager and blown off our meetings”- emotional. “Our processes are backwards” is subjective. Stick to facts that can’t be refuted since you’re trying not to ruffle feathers on your way out. Keep those bridges intact.
If your HR team does an exit interview, if you sense they are open, that is the place where you can share in a constructive way to help make change. Let them guide the interview and answer the questions you’re asked. While it’s confidential, remember that what you share can be shared with your almost-past boss etc, so make sure you’re fact based and constructive knowing it could be repeated.
Your resignation letter: short, factual, “my last day is”, and thank you. That’s it.
After you quit….the longest last 2 weeks ever. Work with your boss on the announcement and transition plan, but be clear that you want to let people know and hand off work asap. Keep reminding yourself to stay classy and not leave dead bodies on your way out. Talk with your boss about the “party line” whether the decision was theirs or yours.
Do a good job transitioning. Clean out your desk. Clear your computer. Make yourself available to the people taking over your work- tell them to call or email you with questions. Building that bridge brings comfort to the team members you’re leaving.
Another note- no poaching! It may breach a non-compete, but also goes along with the go out classy rule. Unless your company is going bankrupt, don’t reach out to poach people.
Follow our guidance, and r
Episode 54: Envisioning 2021 with L’areal Lipkins
Welcome to L’areal Lipkins, a sales trainer and expert in goal setting, vision boards, and how to make your goals a reality by adopting the right plan and mindset.
L’areal does NOT believe in SMART goals (specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and timebound) , and we get right into it asking about her approach to goal setting. L’areal is a “recovering SMART goals user,” and she pivoted to her CLARITY method when she saw clients coming back year after year with the same goals. CLARITY stands for:
C- crystal clear
L- linked to a bigger goal (like your company’s or your boss’ or a step towards a bigger personal goal)
T- time bound
Y- tied to your core “why”
“Your why is irrelevant unless you know WHY your why is important.” You have to go deep to figure out why something is important to you to find your emotional connection to your goal in order to make the sacrifices needed to make it happen.
If you don’t have the vision of where you are going, you don’t have enough oomph behind your why. We talk about flexibility, and how you need to adjust goals and not have a 30 year plan. Where do I want to be 1-2 years from now vs 30 years from now. For L’areal, she knew she wanted to own her own business, but she didn’t know what form that would take.
We talk about how important it is for leaders to bring in their people to co-create goals and make sure everyone’s goals feed into the company goals to bring the company to achieve success.
We talk about sales goals and aligning sales and personal career goals. Sales goals are usually tied to revenue, but we talk about how a certain revenue target will help them to achieve personal goals- whether that is a new house, a working spouse or other personal goals. We then go bigger picture and learn about other people’s compelling “why” around their career driver.
L’areal wrote a book called A Woman With Vision. She instructs people to divide their yearly goals into quarters, and then uses her CLARITY method to dive deeply into what each goal looks like and what it will take to get there. Focusing on quarterly goals helps L’areal’s clients prevent being overwhelmed, and allows them to break goals into achievable chunks.
Having a visual representation in front of you helps you stay focused, but also having the whole team share their goals helps teams get to know each other. For example, 4 people on a team L’areal worked with wanted to buy a house, so they brought in a home buying expert to help….
Increasing transparency, especially when times are tougher, is hard as a leader, but it helps keep the team aligned and help everyone get on the same page to success. Especially if there are discrepancies between different teams at a company, helping everyone understand each other’s needs and struggles allows everyone to set goals that lead everyone to success.
Gratitude is a powerful mindset tool, and when we need to shift our goals (like we all did in 2020), we look to gratitude and our core beliefs to reset or adjust our goals. Want a tool to help? Here's L'areal's free tools page.
Want to changed a fixed mindset? Remind yourself (like L’areal does with her 4 year old), “I can figure it out!" Believing in yourself and your ability to overcome will help you move to a growth mindset and get rid of your negative beliefs.
How do I shift my mindset? We think 55-75,000 thoughts a dayand 80% of them are negatively pre-dispositioned, so if we’re not actively working on positivity, we could allow those negative thoughts to take over. We have to identify our negative thoughts and then find the positive, rooted in truth and then repeat it as an affirmation. It takes practice, but eventually you can do it in real time.
L’areal loves the image of a caterpillar turning into a butterfly, sh
Episode 53: Landing a real job in this virtual world with Jason Levin
Welcome Jason Levin, founder and CEO of Ready, Set, Launch. We’re talking with Jason about launching a job search in a virtual world.
Jason grew up with a happy family whose lives changed dramatically when his father lost the only job he had ever had in New York's garment district. Suddenly Jason and his brothers were the kids getting free lunch in school, and the family was struggling. Jason was always the person who would help with mock interviews and resume review in school; later his MBA program asked him to be a coach, and that became the foundation of his career.
Job searching has always been a mindset game, but with Covid, it’s about maintaining the mindset to get through the day -- and to deal with the job uncertainty as well as career and financial uncertainty.
Jason tells people to follow their energy; for him, he needs to laugh, for someone else, it might be sports. He wants people to approach change from a place of strength vs a place of fear. His advice is to work through roadblocks to focus on the good behaviors you do have. We discuss avoiding things that suck your energy in order to build your energy towards the positive.
He distinguishes between people who help you and people who mean well... Identifying the people who help vs the ones who project onto you without help allows you to know who to reach out to, and who will build you up.
Jason reminds his clients that “Waiting is the Hardest Part." You can do things while you wait, but waiting is part of the process. It’s easy to tell yourself stories while you wait -- to imagine what is going on or why the process is taking a long time; but instead, keep trucking and don’t try to figure out why things are dragging. Your goal is the next job, and spending time wondering doesn’t help you towards your goal.
Ready, Set, Launch is Jason’s career coaching business. He uses the principles of consumer marketing for outplacement, resume writing and speaking. He helps people go from point A to point B. He sees career decisions as purchasing decisions -- a two sided marketplace.
One service Jason offers is Outplacement, which is a benefit given to people when they are laid off to help them transition to their next role. If you get this benefit, USE IT! It’s paid for by your current employer to help you find your next position, and it is free career coaching.
We asked Jason what he is telling people about job search after a layoff during this pandemic. His first piece of advice was to write out what gives you energy, strength, and joy, and then to practice articulating those strengths. He looks at industry, employer, and role around where you want to go, and having the pitch that addresses all three.
Once you define what you want to do, then get your pitches in order. Number 1 rule: no complaining. Number 2: know how much time you have to spend looking and hold yourself to it. Number 3: Lists are your friend; they help you stick to your plan.
Jason tells people to put together a list of people who have been most influential in your career and reach out to ask advice, which may just lead to jobs (vs asking for jobs, which may lead to advice).
Networking will get your resume seen faster and by the right people, more than "posting and praying." Jason says to spend the majority of your time networking, and then when you see a posting, think of who you can network with to get close to the job. If you have 60-70% of the job spec, you need to apply by seeing if you know someone at the company.
Employee referral programs are awesome, so are Diversity/Equity/Inclusion officers. Employees want to refer you and get the bonus, and DEI want to hire you because it helps their numbers. These folks are your ins!
“Your life is not in danger because of this interview." This is what Jason tells people who need to psych themselves up for interview
Episode 52: Coming Together to End 2020 with David Campt
Dr. David Campt is a national expert on inclusion and intergroup dialogue. David has worked with groups from large corporations to the White House, and has appeared on The Daily Show. He speaks about about how we talk with each other, and how to help people come together. In 4th grade, David had a teacher tell him that “People are more alike than they are different,” and in his critical work, David shows audiences how to use dialogue in order to connect and come together.
David tells us about how the world has changed over the last 20 years. When he was in the White House in 1998, black people took on the unpaid job of trying to talk to white people about racism. Now black people are saying, “You do the work -- it’s not up to us.” And 55% of white people think that racism experienced by white people is just as important as the racism experienced against black people. The work isn't helping people to understand the importance of that question, it's to hel the 45% of people who do believe racism is an issue to talk with the 55% who do not -- that's the basis of David’s important work.
David encourages conversation, and has been inspired by the growth of the ally movements across all areas.
We talked about "race method"and "reach method": in difficult conversations, in order to be productive, you want to do two things up front. First, move from facts and beliefs to experiences; and secondly, ABC: "Agree Before Challenging," meaning establish common ground before inviting people to new thinking.
RACE is David's acronym for racial conversations, and REACH is for other conversations.
R - Reflect (get centered) and think of stories you want to tell.
A - Ask questions (vs attacking).... ask about their experience (vs their beliefs) that inspires their point of view.
C - Connect; find something you can agree with in their position and tell a story about that.
E - Expand their view... by telling another story where you had a different experience
R - Reflect
E - Enquire (British spelling)
A - Agree
C - Confess
H - Harmonize
David wants people to invite each other to a place of new thinking vs coercing or forcing them to it. David’s methods have people first coming to agreement before they try to teach people to think differently. According to David, people on the Left are “too woke” and treat the people on the Right like they don’t know anything. In David’s book, Compassion Transforms Contempt, he talks about moving the country forward by treating each other with more compassion, which is more persuasive.
Compassion is key to personal change. Moving towards something vs fighting something you hate is so much more effective. If you want to be effective, finding common ground is a good thing.
These are skills to practice, but you have to want to do it.
2020 has been an eye-opening year in terms of race. We’ve opened our eyes to experiences like George Floyd’s gruesome murder, unconscious bias, and mircoaggressions (or as David says, Inadvertent Dignity Violations), and now it’s up to each of us to do better. David’s tips can be helpful in this.
Moving on to our work lives -- the key to building and maintaining diverse teams? We have to support people in a reasonable way so that they can be themselves.
We asked about David’s approach to handling unconscious bias and microaggression situations with peers and leaders at work, and how to handle them as a bystander. David’s #1 strategy is to say to either person, not that one person is wrong or even that you're offended. Instead, David recommends: “When [the thing you're bringing up] was said, I felt weird.” This phrase doesn’t make presumptions about how someone should feel, or show malicious intent, but instead invites people to talk. This can work with both peers and leaders, and can be followed with, “I don’t belie
Episode 51: Imposter Syndrome with Joep Piscaer
This week we welcome Joep Piscaer, who has grown his career by moving up the ranks in a technical organization, from sys admin to CTO, and now is an independent consultant focused on creating content in the devops space.
Throughout his career, Joep has struggled with Imposter Syndrome, and despite numerous indications to the contrary, he has had to work on how to control his impulses to hold himself back. We invited him on for this very open conversation to help listeners understand that imposter syndrome can happen to any and all of us.
Joep’s definition of Imposter Syndrome is “the feeling that you’re not as good as the people around you”. He realized that he compares his life with other people’s Instagram lives, and has learned how to use his imposter syndrome to drive success. Imposter Syndrome rears its head when you’re asked to be an authority. Joep knows that when he’s doing something new, he’s going to feel that Imposter voice.
When he hears that Imposter message in his head, Joep now leans in to do the thing. So if he’s worried about going to a conference, he goes. And then he writes down all the compliments he gets and reads them to fight off the negativity. His hope is that by reading positivity, it will combat the negativity.
Joep teaches about giving compliment; they’re not all created equal! Make compliments specific, timely, and show that you’re paying attention to the person you’re complimenting. We compare Joep’s compliments to the Nurtured Heart parenting approach, both to show people when they are seen., but also, if you don’t mean it, don’t say it. False compliments are the worst!
Learning to give compliments helps with receiving them, but sometimes it’s not easy. Joep still struggles. He writes them down to take the emotion out and make it into words, which are easier to absorb. No matter what’s happening in your head when you get a compliment, the best response is always, “thank you”.
We all have an internal measuring stick, and people with Imposter Syndrome have unrealistic measuring sticks. Joep talks about shifting it a tiny bit every day, and how that will help you retrain your brain and your measuring stick. Our bodies react to imposter syndrome as well, and Joep recommends physical activity and getting away from the technology or social sites that make you feel like an imposter.
Joep fought imposter syndrome with drones; he started flying his drones and learned to get better at it over time. He’s now learning to cook and he’s exploring getting better at things as hobbies, where the stakes are not as big as in his career. When he saw himself pushing himself to be the best at his hobbies, he challenged himself to pull back and just enjoy the learning and process of doing the activity. And in his hobbies, practicing at failing in is one of the keys!
When you feel like an imposter, being vulnerable with yourself and others is even more difficult. Joep says that vulnerability is about knowing what you need and when you need it. Joep now works with a coach. and we talk with him aboout learning to practicie vulnerability without destroying trust. Joep also relied on his Board of Advisors to help him explore vulnerability without feeling too vulnerable.
Joep Piscaer on Twitter: @jpiscaer
Joep’s NextBuild talk: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kl21zya4i0g
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Possibly the best Podcast Ever
Adam gives an excellent perspective as a Gig employee. The ability to balance a portfolio of gigs and separate interests is THE pathway to success in the knowledge economy‼️
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Kat and Liz make this podcast an easy and great listen. Voices are easily heard and full of life.
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Great podcast- even if you’re not looking!
I just started a consulting company so this wouldn’t seem like a podcast I’d be listening to, but there are so many great tips on using LinkedIn, crafting an elevator statement, and focusing on what you REALLY want in your career that I can’t help but tune in for the great advice. Thank you guys!