Your Working Life is an award-winning podcast series hosted by career and professional development author, speaker, and influencer, Caroline Dowd-Higgins. Featuring candid interviews with luminaries in the career, leadership, entrepreneurship, and wellness fields, listeners will benefit from wisdom about how to navigate life and career. Well-known personalities and industry experts including Tiffany Cross, Whitney Johnson, Guy Kawasaki, Melissa Daimler, and Marcus Buckingham give their personal take on how to thrive in your career. The podcast features a diverse array of experts with a special emphasis on female leaders, authors, and entrepreneurs.
Fire Up Innovation with Helene Cahen
Helene Cahen, MS, is an innovation strategist, trainer, facilitator, and speaker with over 20 years of experience helping companies navigate innovation challenges. She is the founder and principal consultant at Fire Up Innovation Consulting (previously Strategic Insights), where she guides Fortune 500 companies, small businesses, and non-profits to understand innovation, create innovative new products/services, build effective teams, and support a user-centered culture.
Cahen has been a facilitator and lecturer for the University of California Haas School of Business and is now coaching in their Executive Program. She was also the vice president of innovation for a startup and worked in and for package goods corporations in the beginning of her career. She is in demand as a speaker on the topic of design thinking and creativity, and recently did a TEDx talk on high-performance collaboration for teams.
Trained in creative problem solving and design thinking, Cahen received an MS in Creativity and Change Leadership from the Center for Applied Imagination at the State University of New York (SUNY) Buffalo. She also has a business degree from Sciences Po Paris, a prestigious French business school. Born and raised in Paris, Cahen lives in Berkeley, California, with her family.
SPARK AND SUSTAIN HIGH-PERFORMING INNOVATION TEAMS
Innovation Is Iterative, Messy, And Nonlinear, Says Leading Innovation Strategist
Today’s challenges – whether individual, business-focused, or collective world problems – are complex. Solving them requires diverse skills and thinking, but also a common understanding of thinking processes. To create change, to adapt, and to innovate in organizations requires teamwork. Typically, teams are brought together because of their experiences, functional expertise, and background. Yet, they often don’t have a formal understanding and knowledge of how to work together as a team, particularly in high-stakes situations like innovation.
In FIRE UP INNOVATION: Sparking And Sustaining Innovation Teams, innovation consultant and strategist Helene Cahen provides a roadmap to support a journey of learning and a practice of new thinking and risk-taking. The book, with its multi-color energizing design, contains the keys to a self-guided journey to understanding one’s own creativity and developing innovation techniques, language, and tools to collaborate and innovate with others more easily and successfully.
Based on Cahen’s extensive experience working with organizations large and small, FIRE UP INNOVATION:
· Outlines practical ways to support and sustain high-performing innovation teams
· Stresses the importance of diversity in driving innovation
· Explores AI’s role in the innovation process
· Features actionable practices, including a five-week challenge
Cahen, whose expertise is in developing innovation teams, has seen firsthand how teams often lack a common process, tools, and language to be able to work together effectively. This often starts with teams not being aware of their diversity of thinking, particularly the different ways people solve problems, which can create friction and frustration.
Innovation is a learning journey. There’s no way to predict what can or will happen while moving through the process, and what we learn informs what we need to do next. Thinking about innovation as nonlinear helps adopt a mindset of being open to whatever may happen.
Here are the characteristics of an effective innovation process:
· Start by understanding the environment and the challenges at hand.
· Coming up with ideas (which is the easiest part of the process). The before (defining the right problem) and after (developing and implementing the ideas) are more challenging.
Unconventional Strategies for Career Reinvention with Herminia Ibarra
Thinkers50 profile: https://thinkers50.com/biographies/herminia-ibarra/
Herminia Ibarra is an authority on leadership and career transitions. She is the Charles Handy Professor of Organizational Behavior at London Business School and is ranked among the top management thinkers in the world by Thinkers50. She is a member of the World Economic Forum's Expert Network, a judge for the Financial Times Business Book of the Year Award, and a fellow of the British Academy. She is the author of the bestselling book, Act Like a Leader, Think Like a Leader, and she writes regularly in leading publications, including Harvard Business Review, the Financial Times, the Wall Street Journal, and the New York Times.
Book: WORKING IDENTITY: Unconventional Strategies for Reinventing Your Career
Popular advice cautions against making a career move before we know exactly what we want to do next. However, since its initial publication almost two decades ago, London Business School professor Herminia Ibarra’s WORKING IDENTITY has helped tens of thousands find the clarity they need to reinvent their careers by offering counterintuitive advice that flies in the face of conventional wisdom. Based on Ibarra’s research of hundreds of successful job changers, she argues that career transformation is not an event; it’s a transition process that takes time and is built from small changes.
Now Ibarra is poised to help a new generation of workers emboldened by the pandemic and the Great Resignation to find a new career paths by testing their assumptions. In the book, she writes, “We learn who we are—in practice, not in theory—by testing reality, not by looking inside. We discover the true possibilities by doing—trying out new activities, reaching out to new groups, finding new role models, and reworking our story as we tell it to those around us. What we want clarifies with experience and validation from others along the way…. To launch ourselves anew, we need to get out of our heads. We need flesh-and-blood examples, concrete experiments. We need to act.”
According to Ibarra, in looking to make a career move, she discovered people no matter their age, will find themselves progressing through three stages:
Possible Selves - Although most of us would prefer to begin with a firm answer to the question, “Who do I really want to become?” for Ibarra, the best way to start questioning old working identities is by asking, “How can I widen the set of possibilities that I might explore?”
Between Identities - The transition period when we start testing new possibilities is the “messy middle.” During this time, our sense of identity lingers in a limbo-like state, Ibarra explains, because we are not yet ready to give up our old roles and networks and are still trying out various options.
Deep Change - The milestone that will show you that you have arrived, Ibarra argues, is not moving into a new career, but achieving greater alignment between who you are and what you do. The key to this process is small wins, which reduce fear, clarify direction, and encourage further action.
Ibarra then discusses the concrete things we can do to propel through the three transition phases:
Crafting Experiments - Testing the future means transforming abstract possibilities into tangible projects we can evaluate. Whether taking courses or agreeing to do a side project, these critical efforts allow us to gain knowledge, skills, resources, and relationships. Even better if we can take on several things at once, Ibarra adds, in order to compare and contrast.
Shifting Connections – Finding kindred spirits, mentors, role models, and new professional communities help us figure out what we want to do next. Sometimes, these people who provide psychological support or encouragement can matter more than contacts that produce actual leads for new roles, Ibarra reveals.
Making Sense –Arranging our life in
Work Differently with Kate Bravery
KATE BRAVERY, an organizational psychologist, draws from her time living in China and the United Kingdom during the pandemic and working with global firms on their talent strategies. Leading on Mercer’s Insight and Advisory agenda, she is close to workforce trends and emerging people practices around the world. During this period, she also partnered with the World Economic Forum to help CHROs innovate and respond to the evolving Future of Work agenda as it reset overnight.
WORK DIFFERENT: 10 Truths for Winning in the People Age (Wiley; November 30, 2023). by Mercer experts Kate Bravery, Ilya Bonic, and Kai Anderson is an insightful and practical new guide on how to sustainably manage people in today’s global economy, with guidance on how to transform the way organizations recruit, hire, upskill, and retain their people. WORK DIFFERENT explains how leaders can adapt their people agendas to create an inclusive work environment that fosters employees’ growth.
Bravery, Anderson, and Bonic look ahead to what’s next and highlight how to weave sustainability and resilience into business priorities and make real progress on profits, people, and the planet.
· Why you should think of employees as contributors instead of workers—people want to be viewed as true partners who are invested in outcomes and have autonomy surrounding their work.
· How to effectively combat burnout by identifying unsustainable work practices and by managing your energy like you would your budget, with forecasting and discipline—especially relevant as we approach the holidays.
· How to establish a new rhythm of work in our new hybrid / remote workplaces by thinking differently about working hours, building a social aspect into meetings, and guarding against inequities when it comes to access to tech.
· How AI can help us flag gaps in inequities in healthcare and learning at our organizations.
· How to use empathy to connect with workers to find out what issues they value and help ensure people-centric cultures and policies.
· Why hybrid / remote working situations have led to distrust and isolation among workers, and how to instead create more trust and accountability through less oversight.
· How to successfully focus on people, planet, and profit by creating well-being programs, growing upskilling opportunities, and promoting social equity.
· How to pivot to become a skills-based organization that focuses on upskilling and reskilling before the current skills workers have become obsolete.
· How to retain employees who have no problem jumping ship for better pay by focusing on pay equity, competitive rewards, and better career pathing.
“COVID was the ultimate test,” the authors write. “Suddenly the watchful eye of the public was on businesses worldwide, and one work truth became ever more self-evident: Companies that demonstrated genuine concern for all of their employees—not just those at the top—stood a better chance of coming through these successive shocks stronger than before.”
Kate’s expertise is extremely relevant in our world today for a few reasons: According to Kate’s research, more and more employees are being vocal about their desire for a workplace that aligns with their beliefs, allows for greater flexibility, and helps them prioritize their health. For example, in 2022 one in three employees said they would sacrifice pay hikes for greater flexibility and one in four would do so for time to focus on CSR. As a result, employers in today’s workplace need to understand that individuals are *the* core assets in an organization and that their well-being is vital for success and longevity. I would love to talk to you about interviewing Kate about why the future of work needs to include treating people with empathy and creating environments tha
Interviewology with Anna Papalia
Anna Papalia is the author of Interviewology: The New Science of Interviewing and a career influencer with over 1.5 million followers across social media platforms. She has consulted with Fortune 100 companies, taught at Temple University’s Fox School of Business and coached over 10,000 clients to interview better. Her groundbreaking discovery of Interview Styles revolutionized the way we teach and understand interviewing. She is also a public speaker at the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) and DisruptHR. She lives in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Anna Papalia, TikTok’s “Interview Expert” (1.5M social media followers). In her upcoming book, INTERVIEWOLOGY: The New Science of Interviewing (Harper Business; January 30, 2024), Papalia reveals a new language, backed in science and grounded in four unique interview styles, which helps both hiring managers and job seekers to name and understand their unique interviewing tendencies.
Because 90% of hiring managers aren't trained on how to interview, they fall prey to their implicit bias when judging candidates and making hiring decisions. Job seekers, equally as mystified by the process, follow stale advice, memorizing rote answers that aren't true to who they are. Having consulted with Fortune 100 companies and taught over 10,000 clients how to improve their unique interview skills, Papalia is determined to improve the process for both hiring managers and job seekers alike.
In a podcast interview, Papalia can discuss the four different interview styles, what their priorities are in an interview, and what they say about the person:
Charmers who think, “I want to be liked” Challengers who think, “I want to be me” Examiners who think, “I want to get it right” Harmonizers who think, “I want to adapt”
3 Things NOT to Do When Negotiating a Job Offer
When You’re Asked in a Job Interview, Why Do You Want to Work Here
When You Receive a Job Offer, Don’t Accept it on the Spot!
Career Fulfillment in a Complicated World with Merideth Mehlberg
Merideth Mehlberg is CEO of Merideth Mehlberg Group. An ICF-certified Master Coach, she helps executives look forward to Monday mornings. For almost twenty years, she has walked alongside senior and high-potential leaders to define their career priorities, measure the gap with their current opportunities, and close the space between the two. Clients grow their professional satisfaction, impact, and success, transforming their careers and leadership styles from the inside out.
Mehlberg blends a practical, action-oriented ethos with a deeply intuitive sense to help established and emerging leaders find their way through thorny career challenges. Her pre-coaching career in corporations and start-ups helps her relate to what her clients navigate daily; her recruiting, product and project management roles in the staffing, technology, and transportation arenas inform her pragmatic, results-focused style.
Mehlberg partners with high EQ executives in strategic roles who need to turn their strategic muscle on themselves in service of their professional goals. She coaches C-suite, senior, and emerging leaders in service and product companies in leadership roles spanning technology, strategy, marketing and communications, operations, sales, and other strategic disciplines. An experienced facilitator and moderator, Mehlberg chairs the Bay Area chapters of the UCLA Anderson CEO Forum and serves as a Core Guide for Chief. She lives in Northern California and works with clients locally as well as globally.
Book: NAVIGATING CAREER FULFILLMENT IN A COMPLEX WORLD
Avoid The Traps And Learn The Strategies To Reach One’s Goals
The journey to an ideal career is not a straight line, but one full of twists and turns. The complexities of these times and the scramble to come to terms with them are almost overwhelming. More than ever people want their work to be fulfilling and count for something. But how does one go about this without a playbook. Career strategist and executive coach Merideth Mehlberg, MMC provides a clear roadmap in her new book, YOUR FINEST WORK: Career Fulfillment In A Complicated World.
A Master Certified Coach, Mehlberg, CEO of Merideth Mehlberg Group, draws on nearly twenty years of working with emerging and established executives in Fortune 100 companies, startups, and nonprofits, to transform careers and lives. Using a practical and heart-based approach, she guides readers in their desired direction, regardless of whether they are growing in place or making a job or career change. “I have taken what I have learned on my journey, cut through the complexity, and crystallized it into an easy-to-read primer that will help you realize your full potential and do your finest work,” she says.
The key to becoming the intentional architect of one’s career is making the decision to take charge. Regardless of the circumstances, people can make the decision right now to take the reins of their careers and turn them in the direction of their choosing. Whether growing in place, making a job change, or launching a career pivot, the aim is to increase one’s sense of control – taking responsibility for one’s professional life and being in charge of where one is headed.
YOUR FINEST WORK delves into the major traps that prevent people from reaching their goals, and the strategies, practices, and tactics that will allow them to avoid or defeat these obstacles.
People are trapped when they:
· Are asleep at the wheel
· Focus on everyone else’s agenda but their own
· Run on empty
· Fixate on doing things right
· Have a transactional focus
· Try to do it all themselves
· Don’t tell a compelling career story
They thrive when they:
· Become an intentional architect
The Psychology of Sales with Arishma Singh
Arishma Singh is an award-winning top performer, a ‘pocket rocket,’ and a woman to watch, with over 20 years of corporate experience working with such major brands as Nielsen Media, American Express, Google Australia, Pivot Software, and Experian Australia, After numerous health setbacks, Singh’s journey into mind-body solutions led her to EFT (Emotional Freedom Techniques). A globally certified and accredited EFT practitioner, she leveraged EFT to develop her own methodology, THRIVE, to enable high performers to achieve sustainable success without compromising their wellbeing. A keynote speaker, author, and edupreneur, Singh leads Thrive With EFT to empower clients to overcome inner blocks and achieve life-changing transformation. Her new book is The Respected Salesperson.
WEBSITE: arishma.com and therespectedsalesperson.com
The Psychology of Sales--The Complex Inner Game That Underpins High Performance
This is about the internal work that must take place if you want to move beyond the negative “salesey” perception of a salesperson to become the Respected Salesperson.
The Big Story: Everybody is a salesperson, whether they realize it or not. As humans we are always negotiating, pitching ideas, influencing, and changing people’s perceptions to convince them to buy into our ideas. From getting a raise or promotion at work, to landing a first date, or even getting your children to eat their vegetables, all of these desired outcomes spring from our ability to sell. If you want to sell your idea, respect is the strongest sales motivator you have. This means not only external respect, but self-respect.
The So-What: In order to gain people’s respect, you must first look within yourself. People tend to be wary of salespeople precisely because we know that their main purpose is to influence – to change somebody’s mind, so that they think differently. If you want to THRIVE in sales, before you seek to change the minds of others, you first need to change your own mind through the interplay between your Thoughts, Habits, Reasons, Instincts, Values, and Emotions.
Key Messages: Drawing on an evidence-based, self-help, therapeutic mind-body tool that she herself uses on a daily basis - Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT), also known as Tapping – and the THRIVE methodology that she developed to create sustainable success, Arishma Singh weaves the personal with the professional, to equip you with the tools you need to grow respect for yourself and ultimately command respect from others.