How to find your next job rotation

So you’ve decided to rotate and feel good about your reasons, but are worried about finding the right job.
 
How do you know what’s the right next step?
How do you know what the new team is really like?
What if you rotate and the team reorgs and the manager and job changes?
 
These are questions we all ask, but they don’t actually help us find the right job.
 
There are no guarantees in life. There’s no guarantee the team won’t restructure. There’s no guarantee you won’t get into the job and three months later realize what a hot mess it is.
 
There is no such thing as a guarantee.
 
You can keep fighting against that reality or you can just acknowledge there are certain things out of your control and focus on what you can control.
 
I encourage people to start by getting very clear on what exactly they want out of their next role. What is it that you want to be different? What projects or skill do you want to grow around? Be very clear on what areas you are not willing to compromise on in your next move.
 
Once you are clear, then start networking, searching the job board, and putting out feelers. When you are clear about what you are looking for, the coffee chat is going to be much more productive for you and the other person.
 
I think the questions you ask tells the hiring manager about you and what you bring to the team more than how you answer their questions.
 
As an internal employee, you know the drill. You know what questions they are going to ask and how to frame the answers. You know the interviewing process.
 
Let’s say you decide your three must haves are a safe place to fail, work life balance, and having a voice at the table. When you go to the coffee chat, ask questions that will give you insight into these areas.
 
Ask things like, “What are the three failures the team has this quarter and what did you learn from them?”  If they can’t answer, then maybe they are not actually learning from their failures.
 
Ask things like, “When are your teams peak times and what’s the expectation during those times?”  If the answer is peak times are during launches that happen every month, that’s a different data point than if peak times are during Q4. If they can’t clearly answer the question, that would be a red flag to me.
 
Ask things like, “What does your team do to make sure feedback is incorporated into team projects from employees at all levels?”
 
You have to be clear on what you are looking for. Then when circumstances change, you are not regretting your decision because you based it on things outside of your control-  like who your manager is or what project you work on.
 

Want help figuring out what you really want in your next role, let’s jump on the phone and figure it out together. Sign up here.

Answer these 3 questions to know if you should rotate teams

At my company people are encourage to rotate teams. It helps share knowledge across groups and as an employee, sometimes you just need new problems. But knowing when to rotate can be tricky.
 
Maybe you’ve been told you would be promoted for the last 3 quarters, but it’s not happening. Should you wait it out or rotate?
 
Maybe you’ve been on the team for a few years and feel like people are expecting you to move, but you don’t know what you want your next move to be.
 
Maybe the team re-orged and you job is completely different and not something you want to do.
 
But have you ever rotated teams and been equally as miserable? How do you really know when it’s time to rotate?
 
Honestly answer the following questions to find out:
 
  1. WHY do you want to rotate?
  2. Do you feel good about your WHY?
  3. What are you trying to escape by rotating?
 
Remember, we do everything based on how we feel. But the only reason we feel anything is because of our thinking.
 
If you want to rotate to escape something like a bad manager, crappy project, or lack of respect you will find those same things on your next team because your brain rotates with you.
 
If you are rotating to escape any negative emotion, I suggest working through it first. We all think changing our situation will solve the problem but remember other people and your job can’t make you feel anything. What you think about people or your job is driving your feelings and when you feel desperate and hopeless, you might end of taking the first thing that comes along or get into a situation that is no better.
 
But if you want to rotate because you are ready for new challenges and want to shake things up go for it. Knowing that it’s going to be part good and part bad on your current OR new team removes all the drama and allows you to focus on working towards you goals. When you start exploring other teams because you are curious what else is out there you are going to make a more level headed decision that helps move you forward regardless of circumstances that are out of your control.
 
So, if you like your reason WHY you want to rotate and it feels true to your career goals, then it’s the perfect time.
 
If you want help figuring out if you should rotate, let’s jump on the phone for some free coaching. Sign up here.

Impostor Syndrome

A buzz word at work these days is Impostor Syndrome.

Impostor Syndrome is when you feel like a fraud because people might find out you can’t actually do all the things they think you can do. I’m pretty sure EVERYONE has felt this way at one point or another.

For example, say it’s your first week at a new job and you are getting a better feel for all the things you are now responsible for. You probably have moments where you feel under qualified, but so what?

Are you making it mean you are going to fail and get fired? Are you making it mean they might regret hiring you?

These thoughts and feelings all stem around fear because deep down you agree with what people might be thinking. 

You’re worried because what if you make a mistake. What if you made the wrong choice? What if they hate you? What if you hate the job? What if you get fired? What if? 

Worse case scenario, you go and find a new job. Best case scenario, you figure it out, rock at your job and get promoted. 

If you new how to do every single thing in your job, you would be so board. You would not be challenged to stretch and grow and probably quit. Who wants to do a job they already know how to do ever aspect of?

Instead of focusing on what people might discover you can’t do, focus on what you know you can do. Think about why they hired you. Why you signed up for the job. What you believe about your ability to figure it out. Most teams value the person that knows how to solve problems way more than the person who is a know it all.

And if you really step back and think about it, everyone is a “fraud.” We are all making it up as we go. Some of us just believe our made up story easier than others.
 

So next time you are worried about being an impostor, stop worrying about what other people think of you and start focusing on what YOU think about you. It feels so much better.

Want help applying this to your specific situation? Sign up for a free coaching session here.

The most helpful skill no one taught you

I was expecting an important phone call on Friday. Thursday they text me and asked if I had 5 minutes to chat that day.
 
Immediately my heart started to race, my palms got all clammy, and I burst into a cold sweet.  The nervousness of what would happen in those 5 minutes was taking over. What if the call did not go as I was hoping? What if it did? Ahhh..
 
I wanted to know their response immediately, but did not want to let on how nervous I was. So I sat and just felt the nervousness for a few minutes before I called them up.
 
Have you ever really tried feel your emotions on purpose? I rarely use to and honestly I’m still not that great at it, but today I decided to just feel it and not be in a hurry to make it go away.
 
The craziest thing happened. By purposefully feeling the emotion of nervousness, it literally passed in about a minutes.
 
When you have a thought, the neurons in your brain connect and release a chemical. Your body feels and responds to that chemical.  Emotions are simply chemicals in your body. They are your brains way of keeping you safe and alive.
 
When you are “feeling” your emotions, we call this processing your emotions. Learning how to literally feel your emotions is one of the most helpful skills we were never taught. Here’s how you do it.
 
You have to get out of your head and into your body.  Describe the feeling in as much detail as you can. Pretend you are trying to explain it to an alien that has no concept of what a feel is. Where in your body to you feel it? Does it move? Is it a color? What texture is it? The better you can get a describing it, the more you are actually FEELING it. You stop feeling the emotion once the chemical has left your body and the more you literally feel it, the faster the chemical moves through you.
 
The next time you have a negative feeling, try pausing for even just one minute and really feel it. I guarantee it will go away so much faster if you do.
 
Want help applying this to your specific situation? Sign up for free coaching here.
 

How to manage up

One of the many questions I get asked all the time is how to “manage up.”

We all have managers, who have managers, who have managers and it seems like the higher you go, the bigger the ask and the smaller the understanding on what it takes to execute the task.

Say for example you are in a meeting where the VP says the teams needs to launch a new feature by the end of the month and you get assigned as the project owner.

You know there’s no way we can launch it on time and have it work right while still driving the day to day business projects at the same time.

Now what?

Sometimes we stress out, stop sleeping, and let anxiety take over our lives. We work crazy hours, push people to do the same, and try everything possible to prove we can do it.

Other times we panic and spend our time building a case whey we can’t and shouldn’t do it.

What if we did a combination of the two, but dropped all the anxiety and panic? It’s totally possible. Here’s how.

This is the exact time where it’s important to “manage up.”

Your VP should not know all of the day to day details you know. That’s your job. But it’s also your job to clearly communicate to them. Managing up does not look desperate or whinny about the budget and resources you don’t have. Managing up means managing the situation they way you want THEM to manage the situation.

It means laying out all the facts, identifying a few possible ways forward, calling out the pros and cons to each option, making a recommendation and letting them make the final decision. Maybe the want the feature to launch and are willing to give on the day to day business projects. Maybe they don’t actually want the feature to launch as quickly once they better understand the tradeoffs.

The only way to know is to manage up. Act like the manager, clearly communicate the options, drop the drama and get to work.

Just because an idea came from someone higher up does not mean you don’t have otpions. Senior leaders value someone that can come to the table with a clear plan to be discussed without all the excuses.

So next time you are trying to manage up, start acting like the manager, drop the drama, and be the manager you want them to be.

Want help applying this to your specific situation? Let’s jump on the phone for a free coaching mini session. Sign up here.

How to stop dreading the yearly review process

It’s that time of year when we all give feedback about each other and declare our superpowers to our manager.

It can feel like a waste. Who came up with “superpower” anyways? It’s all squishy and emotional and can be pretty much anything you want as long as you can throw one example at it. Then there’s the 38 request for feedback waiting in your inbox. Gotta love request from those random people you sat in 3 meetings with.

I use to take days writing my 3 page review. Since there are character limits now, I take 30 seconds to think about what I’m good at, come up with the most resent example (because who can really remember work from a year ago?) and call it good.

I personally take team feedback with a grain of salt. I listen and consider the feedback, but also know that it’s none of my business what other people think about me.

But this year I don’t want to dread it and feel like it’s a waste of time. I don’t want to be annoyed that I’m not being promoted. I don’t want of feel like it’s a pointless exercise.

So what do I want to think about the yearly feedback process?

This year I’m focusing less on my superpower and more on what three areas I want to keep growing in. I want to spend time celebrating my wins from the past year (because no one else is going to) and setting very clear goals for myself based on where I want to be a year from now.

What do you want to get out of the feedback process this year?

Let’s jump on the phone and figure it out together. I’m a certified Life Coach that helps Amazon employees who constantly feel anxiety learn how to feel better today. Sign up here.

Answering this one question will guarantee you will reach your goals this year

Have you ever set a goal and been super excited and dedicated to it for a few weeks and then just given up because it’s hard and not fun? Good news. You’re not alone.

It’s funny how we get real serious and committed to something, but after the third or forth tough encounter with it, our commitment starts to slip and we start slowly giving up.

Say your goal is to wake up early and exercise 5x week. For most of us, it goes a little something like this:

Day 1, you are up and at em feeling good. Day 2 you are a bit tired, but still focused on your commitment. Day 3, it starts to get real. You’re tired and it’s cold and you REALLY don’t want to get up, but you do it anyways. Day 4, Na. You’ve earned a break and can do it tomorrow.

Your brain is built to be as efficient as possible so changing habits, routines, and trying new things throws it into panic mode. Of course you will find a million valid excuses to keep sleeping. Of course it’s going to feel better right that minute to hit snooze. But you are the only one holding yourself back from your goals.

What would it be like to set a goal and actually stick to it, EVEN WHEN YOU DON’T WANT TO? What if you stuck to it every time you dreaded it, had something better to do, or were totally justified quitting? Image how much you could do.

I say set big goals. Huge ones that seem really hard but instead of focusing on the end result, ask yourself this one question and come up with a game plan for every single answer.

Question: Why won’t I reach my goal?

Here’s what my 2019 goal looks like.

Goal: Build a 200k coaching business by December 31, 2019.
Why it won’t work (all of my excuses) and my plan to overcome them:
I don’t have enough time.

  • Get very specific with everything that needs to be done, calendar it out, and do what is on my calendar NO MATTER WHAT.

I can’t do well in my day job and my side gig at the same time. Something will have to give.

  • Be willing to move forward with B- work. Don’t waste time making things “perfect”. Stay focused on my goals and don’t get distracted by other ideas of things I can do. If it’s not work directly related to my work or business goals, the answer is no.

I don’t know how to do it.

  • All I have to know is the one next step. Keep taking action, learning, and moving forward. You’re not supposed to know. Keep trying until I DO know.

How am I going to get enough people to buy my program?

  • Keep making offers. Keep using these tools on myself and getting personal results. Give people free results ahead of time. Stay focused on WHY I want to build this business and not the money.

What if they don’t like my program?

  • Ask for feedback and be willing to change. Be willing to let people be wrong about me and my program. Don’t make it mean anything about me if someone does not like the program.

Working nights is hard when I’ve been working all day.

  • So what. Reaching my goal will feel that much better when I’m willing to work that much harder for it. If I love doing it and it’s helping people, is it really “hard?” Find a belief that serves me better than “it’s hard.”

Want help defining your 2019 goals and creating a clear plan to get there? Sign up for some free coaching and let’s rock 2019 together.

What to do when your colleague is driving you insane

We’ve all had times when we have to work with that ONE person. You know. The one who takes credit for everyone’s work and is always schmoozing with upper management, but is the worst team player.

They can be so hard to work with because you want to keep a close eye on them so you don’t get thrown under the bus, but you loath interacting with them. Sometimes even just seeing them makes you roll your eyes and do everything you can to avoid them. And I’m sure you are not the only on on the team that feels this way.

It sucks because THAT person can easily ruin a good day.

I’ve been in this situation a few times over the years. It’s sadly even how I bonded with some of my team members. Nothing like a shared hatred of someone to bring the group together.

A couple years ago I was working with someone that bother me so much it was starting to effect my performance. I was so obsessed with how much I hated them that I was not getting things done or doing them very well. That’s when I realized something had to change. It was either them or me.

I knew logically that I can’t control anyone but myself so that left we with the option to rotate teams or put on my adult pants and stop having temper tantrums about reality.

I was NOT in a place where I could “see the good” in them, but I could just look at reality and drop the drama. So that’s what I did.

They would come into work and instead of thinking about all the things they do that bothers me, I just though, so and so is at work.

Instead of stewing about the meeting I was going to be in with them I just acknowledge that the reality was they were going to be there, but I could still be me.

Slowly, but surely it got better. Don’t get me wrong. They did not change a dang thing. But I changed what I was focused on. Waisting all of my emotion energy on them was getting me nowhere, but taking back control of my emotion energy and purposefully choose to focus on other things was so much better.

I never did get to a place where I enjoyed working with them, but I was able to be totally neutral about them. They were not good or bad. They were just a person on the team.

I rotated teams, but now when our paths cross I don’t even think twice about it. It feels so great to be in control of my emotions when they are around.

So if there is someone you are having a hard time working with, for one day try to stop arguing with reality and just keep telling yourself, “They are just a person on the team” and see how it goes.

If you want help applying this to your specific situation, let’s jump on the phone and hook you up with some free coaching. Sign up here.. I only offer a few free coaching spots a week so grab one before they fill up.

What does it mean when your 1:1 gets canceled

Last week a coworker reached out because they were so frustrated with their manager canceling their 1:1’s. Our conversation when a little something like this:

Me: Why is this a problem?
CW: I want to talk about my career and get feedback.
Me: Why do you think they canceled it?
CW: Because he’s busy and know that I’m great at my job.
Me: So, tell me again why it’s a problem?
CW: Because I want to talk to talk about my career and get feedback.
Me: You want to hear him say the words you already know are true? Why? If you believe they think you are doing great, why do you need them to say it?

We continued talking about what this meant and she realized she wanted a 100% guarantee on feedback and a plan to a promotion even though logically she gets there’s no such thing.

How often do you worry and stress about things because you don’t feel 100% certain about them?

What if you just decided to be 100% certain for yourself?

What if you decided you didn’t need to be 100% certain?

What if you decided your manager canceling your 1:1 means you are amazing and to keep doing what you are doing?

You get to decide whatever you want to believe so choose your beliefs on purpose.

The choice is yours so stop believing the illogical freak out in your head and start believing the reality that you are amazing.

Want help apply this to your specific situation? Sign up for free coaching here.

How to deal with negative feedback

Today we reviewed round two of my 6 page document outlining our marketing strategy and traffic plan to my skip level. They started out with a preface they think “we are all smart and capable people.” I knew what was about to come was going to be rough.

I also knew that no matter what the feedback was, I had done my best and was proud of the document.

I sat there for an hour and did not say a word. I listened to all the feedback, took notes on follow up items, and felt all of my emotions.

I was pissed others were not chiming in when they gave feedback that contracted feedback I’d been given from my manager. I was hurt that all of my hard-work was still not enough. I was so annoyed that I was going to have to work on my vacation. I was frustrated at what was being asked because no one knows the answers.

But I just felt it all. I gave myself permission right after the “preface” to just feel whatever came. I was not going to try and justify my way through it and tell myself why the feedback was wrong. I just felt it.

In the end, I was no longer pissed or angry. I was still annoyed about working my vacation, but I came to terms with reality. I separated out the facts from all the drama. There needs to be another version of the doc. There are questions to be answered. But so what? It does not have to mean anything. I get to choose how I want to feel about it and right now I’m just going with neutral. It’s not good or bad. It just is.

So next time you get some hard feedback, just feel it. Feel the anger and hurt and pain. It so much better than resisting it.

Want help learning how to apply this to your situation, sign up for free coaching here.