job search

Episode 45: How to Honor Your Pace and STOP "Should-ing" All Over Yourself

Hey Career Girl Nation!

This episode is on a topic that’s very near and dear to my heart. I’m diving into how to “honor your pace” or simply put: How to stop obsessing over self-imposed timelines when it comes to your career and life.

There’s a post on my Instagram account about my struggle with honoring my pace that really resonates with the people that read it. It seems like more than just a few people can relate to feeling like they need to accomplish this or that by the time they’re X years old.

As a career coach, I speak to women from various walks of life in different spaces in their career and no matter how different each of their career stories are, the one constant is the fact that they all feel they aren’t progressing through their career as quickly as they feel they “should”.

In this episode, I’m going to break down the pitfalls of living in your “shoulds” and give you practical ways you can work toward honoring the pace things are unfolding in your own life.

P.S. If you enjoy this episode, please subscribe, rate and review on iTunes.

Episode Gems You Don't Want to Miss:

  • The dangers of living in your “shoulds” and why staying there leaves you feeling unsatisfied

  • Why you must move away from focusing on the timing of your goals and aspirations and what to focus on instead

  • The pitfalls I’ve faced over the years trying to rush through the self-imposed timelines I’ve placed on my life

  • What really happens when we make decisions from a space of fear and lack

  • 5 ways to finally start honoring your pace in your career and life

Links mentioned in this episode:

Let's be Internet BFFs:

If you enjoyed this podcast episode, please take a moment to subscribe, rate and review on iTunes. This is how we can spread the word about the Deeper than Work podcast and have as many women as possible join the Career Girl Nation!

Episode 44: How to Know When It's Time to Leave a Workspace You've Outgrown

Hey Career Girl Nation!

As a HR leader and career strategist, I’ve spoken to thousands of women over the past decade at various stages in their career. While each woman’s experience is unique, I’ve been able to categorize the challenges women face in their professional journeys into a few main themes.

One theme that comes up a lot in my work is overcoming the challenge of leaving a job/career/company that no longer serves you. In fact, of the 100 women who’ve applied to have a free career exploration call with me since February of this year, an overwhelming majority of applicants list some variation of this as a main career challenge they’re facing: “Exiting a work space I’ve outgrown”.

With all the challenges women - especially Black women - face in their careers, it’s no surprise they’re having trouble making the leap to bigger and better opportunities at work.

In this episode, I’m discussing 1) how to know you’ve outgrown your current work space, 2) why it’s hard for you to walk away from that space even when you know you should and 3) what steps you can take once you’re finally ready to move on to the next phase in your career.

If you’re on the fence about staying or leaving your current work situation, this episode is just for you!

P.S. If you enjoy this episode, please subscribe, rate and review on iTunes.

Episode Gems You Don't Want to Miss:

  • The 3 big signs that’ll clue you in to the fact you’ve outgrown your job and it’s finally time to move on

  • The 5 stages of change and why understanding which stage you’re in is the first step to making a career move

  • 3 reasons Black women (and all women, minorities and other people from marginalized groups) find it difficult to exit work spaces they know they’ve outgrown

  • What to do once you’re finally ready to move on to the next phase in your career

Links mentioned in this episode:

  • Overview and explanation of the Five Stages of Change

  • #BlackWomenAtWork chronicles the challenging experiences of Black women trying to do something as simple as working while Black

  • Episode 23: The Exact Process to Finding Your Dream Job in 21 Days (The D.R.E.A.M. Job Profile Episode)

  • Schedule your Career Breakthrough Session now if you’re ready to break through their overwhelm, confusion and negative thinking to finally have 1000% more clarity about what’s next in their career

  • Want to work with me, but not sure how? Sign up for a free career exploration call and let’s talk through your career goals and how I can help!

Let's be Internet BFFs:

If you enjoyed this podcast episode, please take a moment to subscribe, rate and review on iTunes. This is how we can spread the word about the Deeper than Work podcast and have as many women as possible join the Career Girl Nation!

Episode 09: 6 Things I Did Before Making a Career Switch

Making a career switch is a huge deal and not something to be taken lightly. Whether you're in a job you hate or simply feel unfulfilled, it's important that you come up with a transition strategy before you take the leap. 

I've been able to make two huge transitions in my career - 1) from Operations to HR and 2) from Finance to Tech.

In this episode, I'll walk you through the 6 things I did to make sure I was ready to make that switch!

Check it out below!

Job Interview Tips That Will Actually Get You Hired

Did you know that the process of getting hired for a job starts way before you show up for the actual interview?

That you’re being judged evaluated by recruiters from the very first time they come in contact with you (whether it’s on the phone or in person)?

Anyone who’s successful at interviewing knows there’s really only one thing that sets them apart from the hundreds of other candidates vying for the same jobs.

They know there’s only one thing that means the difference between hearing “you’re hired” and … well, *crickets*.   

And yet the first thing most job seekers do after confirming the details of their upcoming interview is to start researching job interview tips – which focus specifically on what to say and do during your interview and almost exclusively ignores what to say and do before the interview.

While it’s probably no surprise that the company you’re interested in interviewing with has an interview strategy – where recruiters and hiring managers spend countless hours thinking about their hiring goals, creating the perfect job description, posting available jobs and screening candidates, picking the right fit – have you ever stopped to consider the benefits of creating your own personal interview strategy as well?

Yes. You. The person being interviewed – should have a strategy.

This is the single most effective job interview tip that separates successful interviewers from everyone else.

The worst thing anyone who’s serious about coming out the other side of the interview process with an actual job offer can do is to just go through the motions without being deliberate and strategic about what they’re doing.

Of the 95% of people who feel they’ve “nailed it” in an interview, only 14% of them actually did. And you can be sure that more often than not, those in the successful pool of candidates not only implemented the normal job interview tips, but also had a well thought out strategy before they even scheduled their first interview.

If you aren’t sure if your interview strategy needs work (or if you’ve never even heard of this before), you’re definitely not alone. Most people feel they can just “wing it” through the interview process, resting solely on their experience and/or networking skills, only to realize this isn’t the case after months or years spent going on interview after interview with no resulting job offers.

Before you send out one more resume or submit a job application anywhere, it’s critical you develop an interview strategy so compelling you’ll have to put your phone on silent just to get a break from all of the recruiters calling to offer you a job at their company.

One of the very first steps you’ll need to take for that to happen is to decide what you’d like your interview brand to be. Your interview brand should complement your personal brand and is basically how you’d like to be remembered by anyone who comes in contact with you during the interview process.

While your interview brand won’t be explicitly referenced on your resume or during your interviews, all of your resume bullet points, email correspondences, answers to interview questions, etc. should center around this brand.

Think of 3-5 words you want to be left in the interviewer’s mind after they’ve read your resume, talked to you on the phone, or met you in person.

For example, do you want to be seen as data driven, team oriented and technologically savvy? Or as a creative project manager with the ability to teach and train junior members of your team? These are prime examples of a strong interview brand.

Some of the key things to think about when deciding on your interview brand are: why you’re the ideal candidate for the specific role you’re interviewing for, the unique value you’ll bring to the table if hired and what aspect of your experience that will not only be relevant, but memorable to a recruiter or hiring manager. 

Once you’ve decided on the theme you want to convey, you’ve got to make sure everything you do is consistent with it. This includes what you say, what you do – even how you dress. Everything matters and nothing is off limits.

Now that you’ve developed your interview brand, it’s time for you to begin the actual preparation process – which in an average interview strategy most likely includes a quick once over of the ‘About Us’ section on the company website and glancing at the job description the night before. This approach is the opposite of what a successful interview strategy looks like and isn’t what will ultimately get you the outcome you’re looking for – a job offer.

Instead of just preparing for an interview, you’ll need to get into the habit of strategic preparation. This means prepping for your interview in such a way that all but guarantees you’ll be seen as an ideal candidate for the position.

  • For example, strategic interview preparation includes:
  • Knowing ‘why’ you’re interviewing for a specific role
  • Organizing all of your past experience into your professional story
  • Being able to explain why your experience makes you the ideal candidate for the role
  • Knowing the key points about the company you’re interviewing for
  • Getting to know the background of your interviewers
  • Being able to answer interview questions in a way that highlights your value
  • Preparing customized and relevant interview questions to ask during the interview

As you can see, strategic preparation isn’t a simple process – and it isn’t something that’s often included in job interview tips conversations – but it’s a critical part of interview success.

The fact that you’ve made it to the interview phase is a feat only a small number of candidates ever get to. Considering only 8-10 people get called in for an interview out of hundreds of applicants, it’s in your best interest to make sure you put your best foot forward so that you’ll be able to stand out in the process.

Think about what you’ve done previously to prepare for interviews you’ve had and how you could have improved your approach based on what you now know about strategic preparation and interview strategy.

If you’re serious about excelling at the interview process and need help creating your own interview strategy, sign up for my free Interview Success email class today. Learn the 5 research-backed and proven job interview preparation tips you need to succeed in your next interview.


How to Answer 3 of The Most Common Tough Interview Questions

I can't wait for the day when hiring managers and recruiters realize that the format of today's job interview just isn't the best way to assess whether or not a person will be a good fit for a particular job. Instead of asking tough interview questions to trip people up, managers should be focusing on carefully assessing the skills and value the candidate can (or cannot) bring to the table. After all, anyone can learn how to answer tough interview questions, but few people can fake being able to actually perform a required job function. Until that day comes, however, we are forced to work with the tools we have at our disposal, which include the standard 30-60 minute Q&A session with questions aimed at predicting future behavior based on past situations - otherwise known as - the job interview.

You know how the process goes - first, it's the introductory small talk portion, when you and the interviewer talk about the weather and any other topics you share common ground on, then the interviewer transitions to the main event where she proceeds to throw dozens of questions at you that you've already carefully researched, memorized and practiced, and last but not least, you're given the opportunity to show your stuff, and you recite your well thought out and prepared questions that make you sound so smart and intelligent.

Then it's all over.

In that short period of time, your interviewer has made a series of assumptions and judgments about you based on how you've answered the questions she's thrown your way, your body language, tone of voice, fashion sense and everything in between.

Sounds accurate, right?

While there's no way to ever 100% fully prepare to answer every single question you could possibly be asked during an interview - I was once asked what is my super power - a good strategy that I coach my clients on is to prepare to answer the tough questions that typically get asked so you won't get blind sided during the actual interview.

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Here are 3 questions that are commonly asked in an interview that tend to stump candidates if they aren't prepared, and how to answer them the right way so that you can be well on your way to leaving your bad job for a great new one.

So, can you tell me about yourself? This question is probably asked in 99.9% of all job interviews. And if it isn't asked directly, it's asked in some variation such as, what brings you here today or why are you interested in this role?

Believe me when I tell you that the person asking this question really doesn't care about hearing your entire life story, like where you grew up or what you did for fun back in College. The key to answering this question is to realize that they want to know - why are you here in this seat, in this office, in this building, at this company applying for this specific role? Your response should focus on how your professional (and personal, if applicable) life has motivated you to apply for this particular role and how you plan to add value.

Tell me about a time when....? This question annoys me for some reason. I have no logical reason as to why - it just does. Tell me about a time when you've had to deal with a difficult person or lead a project or had a professional failure? Although most people tend to freak out about this type of question the most, it's actually one of the most simple ones to answer because you can break it down into a repeatable formula each and every time, no matter what they are asking.

You need to breakdown the answer to this question into 3 parts - W.H.O. WHAT the problem was, HOW you went about resolving it and what the OUTCOME was. If you stick to this format every time, you will always answer in a way that is cohesive and clear to the interviewer.

Why are you looking to leave your current job? As a HR manager, I've interviewed my fair share of people and sometimes I am so shocked and amazed at the responses I receive from people with this one. Under no circumstances should you take this opportunity to bash your current employer. The first thing the hiring manager will think is that if you can talk this negatively about your current boss and/or company, what will you say about him if you start working there?

Instead, when answering this question you should focus on the development opportunities you are looking for in your career and how the role you're interviewing for will help you achieve that career growth.

The interview process is a necessary evil in the process of finding a new job and the better prepared you are before you sit down for it, the better your chances will be to find success in the process. You should never walk into an interview ready to just 'wing it'. Always take the time to thoroughly prepare and plan your strategy.

Click here to get my free Interview Success Blueprint that provides proven strategies to help you turn your next interview into an actual job offer!