You Date a Company; You Don’t Marry It

I’m taking a little break from the Balance Series. This week includes a little insight into some of my rhetoric I use when out inspiring people to play a bigger game for themselves.

Last week I found myself talking to amazing women at a couple of events on how to articulate their awesome. On both occasions, I reiterated my standard theme:

You date a company; you don’t marry it.

I constantly use this phrase as a frame for referencing the different “dating” phases you, as an employee, go through.

Phase 1: Swiping Right on Tinder vs. Looking a company up on Glassdoor
Phase 2: The First Date vs. The Interview
Phase 3: The First Blush of Love vs. The First 90 days on the job
Phase 4: Saying “I love you” vs. Getting your first big project

These side by side analogies are endless; however, most come to an end with the inevitable breakup. Continue reading “You Date a Company; You Don’t Marry It”

Do You Know What You’re Great at Doing?

When I was about 9 or 10 years old, I got in trouble in school for bartering snails for colored pencils. Yes, my school mates traded their beautifully sharp and colorful Caran D’Ache pencils for slimy yet speedy snails. Interestingly, it wasn’t bringing snails into the school that was the problem. It was the deal making and wheeling and dealing manifesting on the playground instigated by yours truly. Clearly, my entrepreneurial spirit was not encouraged where I went to school. Such a shame. And just in case you needed further evidence, my bartering wasn’t limited to snails. I was a conker broker as well.

I didn’t recognize it at the time, but this was one of many shenanigans as a precocious little girl which should have clearly shown me a path to a career in sales. It’s always seemed second nature to me to find a solution a problem or provide resolution to someone else’s. If there’s a win for both of us, that’s even better. The question “why might they want this?” is always foremost in my mind.

And what does this flashback have to do with the idea of balance? The first step on the path to finding team balance is knowing yourself. Continue reading “Do You Know What You’re Great at Doing?”

How can you be courageous so you can be brave?

These days, I spend most of my time asking people to change. Mostly I coach them just to change the way they talk about themselves but change nonetheless.

Recently, I was meeting with a group of remarkable women, listening to how they would apply what they’d learned from my coaching. I must admit, my heart sank a little. It sank because while the room understood that they needed to evolve how they branded themselves and how others saw them, they were still afraid to push the necessary boundaries. These eager and successful women were really afraid of being their bold, authentic, unique, and compelling selves. My heart sank because I knew exactly what they were feeling: I’ve been afraid too. My heart sank because, in my eagerness to teach the idea, I had forgotten about the fear. Not acknowledging that fear was my fault. Continue reading “How can you be courageous so you can be brave?”

You Are The Product

How to present yourself in a powerful & impelling way.

There’s not a week that goes by where I don’t read some article explaining successful people’s morning routines. I’ve stopped reading them as I generally end up feeling like I’m still not doing enough. Feeling bad about yourself is not a great way to start the day. That said, my morning routine includes reading articles that have collected in my digital feed from the previous day. I’m a big fan of using Feedly to make this easy. I scan through roughly 300 articles a day. One might say it’s a bit of a problem.

However, this prolific reading is a great source of inspiration and ideas for the work I’m doing. Which brings me to this week’s newsletter and a conversation inspired by one of those articles: Andrew Medal’s 5 Investment Firms Reveal What They Look For In Startups.

You should read it yourself, but the five pieces of advice were:

  1. Fix a problem others ignore.
  2. When you pitch, focus on the big picture.
  3. Create products that have a glimpse into the future.
  4. Reach out to VCs physically near you.
  5. Have a balanced founder team.

Continue reading “You Are The Product”

I’m not funny. I’m just brave – Lucille Ball

Do you remember the word I decided was going to be my “word of the year” this year? BOLD.I’m a little over a month in and have learned some lessons along the way. I thought I’d share them with you and see if you were inspired to create your own word. There’s no rule stating you can only do this on January 1st.

Lesson 1 – Being intentional with something new takes effort.

I’m surprised by how often I have to remind myself that I’m supposed to be bold. Every time I have an interaction, I find myself asking myself the question, “Is there an opportunity to be bold here?” I wonder if anyone has built an “Intention reminder app,” it would be great for my phone to ping me at random times and nudge me into boldness. Where might you need a nudge?

Lesson 2 – Asking myself to be bold is making me have a serious conversation with my inner critic.

I had a teacher at my last job, Antonia Galindo,who shared with me the idea of the “Itty bitty shitty committee.” It’s that imaginary jerk that perches on your shoulder and tells you “no” or “you’re not good enough” or “who do you think you are?” or my personal favorite “they will judge you if you do that.” By bumping up against my inner fears on a regular basis, I’m also getting regular practice at shutting up my I.B.S.C., something I’ve struggled with for years. Do you? Continue reading “I’m not funny. I’m just brave – Lucille Ball”

Mismatched

Companies buy keywords and other targeting options to identify the jobs that might fit Linkedin users. But do they?

I received an email this week, as I do every week, from LinkedIn telling me that a company had a role I might be interested in. The role, Sales Order Management Specialist, was just one among many other similar roles. Instead of immediately hitting the delete button (my usual reaction to this weekly email), I think it’s time to question LinkedIn and their customers — is it me or you?

For starters, let me explain why this particular job listing clearly isn’t a fit for me. Some of the key requirements include:

  • 2 to 5 years of order management or order admin experience
  • Strong customer service and communication skills
  • Proficient in Microsoft Excel and Outlook

I absolutely meet those requirements, technically. Even ignoring my current role as CEO, my previous job had me leading revenue operations for what is now a $1B media company. I think even the employer in question would agree that I’m not the candidate they’re looking for. Is the data scraped from my profile not clear? Continue reading “Mismatched”

A Better Way to Ask for an Introduction – Help Me Help You Help Them

You’re ready for a change at work – it’s time for the next stage in your career. What are your next steps? It’s likely that as you research new opportunities, you’ll reach out to your network and ask for an introduction or two. You send the basic message – Can you connect me with…? I’d like an introduction to… Can you send me this person’s email? – and get no reply. Continue reading “A Better Way to Ask for an Introduction – Help Me Help You Help Them”