Ball with Allen Iverson, Movie-making with Hollywood Elite, and Signing Contracts with Jay-Z
My friend Mo claims he’s worked a lot of dream jobs in his lifetime.
In his first role post-college—at Reebok HQ—he spent his time playing company basketball games at lunch and participating in marketing photo shoots with Allen Iverson.
Although these perks made the job pretty special, Mo realized he didn’t love working with a huge company, so he looked for a smaller business to join.
After some self-reflection, Mo decided he was ready to hop on a plane to LAX with a dream and his cardigan. (Ok, maybe not the cardigan part.) He booked a one-way ticket and used some connections to secure a role as an assistant in a major entertainment agency, where he brushed shoulders with screenwriters, A-list actors, and directors. Although he enjoyed getting to know the world behind the scenes, Mo knew he wouldn’t last long. Assistant work in LA can become toxic fairly quickly, so a little over a year after moving to La La Land, he felt ready to spread his wings and fly away.
Mo’s next dream required a new degree. He accepted admission to law school in Boston and set sail on finding a kickass role in the entertainment world. Using his connections, he secured an internship and eventually a legal clerk gig at Def Jam Records, home to celebrities like Jay-Z, Kanye, and Rihanna. With his third dream job secured, Mo spent his days checking clauses on Method Man’s contracts and sitting in conference rooms with Jay-Z. For the average person, this lifestyle is almost unfathomable. But according to Mo, the shine wears off pretty quickly. Before long, boredom and disillusionment set in, and he pivoted for the third time.
“You know, I’d pretty much worked through my 20s and early 30s knowing what I wanted to do and was very fortunate to land in all those positions, but now here I was at the end of that journey still feeling like, ‘Huh, if those things didn’t make me happy, what am I really looking for here?’”
Like many of you, Mo found that his success didn’t necessarily equal happiness. He needed fulfillment. So he began considering his true needs, and one day he decided to become a career coach. Today, he works on the Happen To Your Career team. He uses his unique experiences and knowledge about forming connections and finding unparalleled success to help connect career seekers find their own unique happiness.
We talk to people with stories like Mo’s all the time. People run hard after dreams, make the right connections to land in incredible positions (from the outside perspective, at least), and once they arrive, they realize they don’t want this dream anymore.
Worse, they have no idea what they want. High achievers are great at achieving, but the success doesn’t always satisfy. That’s where we come in.
On our latest podcast episode, we chat with Mo about a few common questions we hear from people trying to find work they love. Read on for the highlights!
Career Seeker Question #1
“I want a job that fits my strengths, but I feel like I haven’t been working in my strengths for a really long period of time. What should I be doing or what could I be doing that would help me refine my strengths and be able to find new work that actually has to do with those strengths?” – Anne
“Get a sense of what your strengths are, and if you can’t apply them in your current job, then find some projects where you can apply them outside of work.
For example, when I was a practicing attorney making the transition into coaching, I developed my coaching skills outside of work. I took classes and practiced with friends. Anne can start by understanding what her skills and strengths are, including what she enjoys doing, and then create an opportunity to apply those discoveries.
For instance, I talk to a lot of people who are leaving day jobs in one career to get into coding and designing. All of this coding and designing takes place on off hours, nights, and weekends.
Also, many clients find opportunities within their current jobs. Most bosses are not going to say ‘no’ if you’re like, ‘Hey! There’s this thing that I think that would benefit the company tremendously and I’ve wanted to try it for a really long time. Could I take this on as an additional project?’”
Career Seeker Question #2
“I’ve selected some roles to test out with the Goldilocks Method. The roles I’ve chosen are librarian, instructional designer, and training and development specialist. Where I’m getting stuck is in knowing where to go to find people to interview that have these roles. What is the best approach to contact people in these roles?” – Katherine
“Linkedin is one of my favorite tools. So you have this idea of job titles and if you have an idea of the company that you would want to work for, then go to the company LinkedIn page. Click on who works there, and then use the filters to identify people with that job title. And then boom. There you go.
When you look to connect with someone on LinkedIn, you want to personalize the note to the connection request, and say something like ‘Hi. My name is Mo. I’m a law student interested in entertainment law. I see that you work in entertainment law. I’d love to ask you a couple questions about your career path. Thanks!’ Leave it at that. The connection request introduces you, lets them know why you’re reaching out, and lets them know you’re interested in their career path. It’s sort of a little bit of flattery. You’re not asking for a job. You’re just asking to learn more about their career path, which I think is sort of an easy thing.”
Career Seeker Question #3
“I’m finding that I only have limited amounts of time and energy to be able to make this transition. My schedule has a tendency to change with things like travel and other things that pop up along the way. What can I do to make sure that I make enough time and energy to complete a successful transition?” – Everyone
“If you already have a busy life with travel and unpredictable schedules, you might want to change your expectations. I think we sort of beat ourselves up for not doing enough, so it’s important to change expectations around how much you can actually get done.
Once you’ve changed expectations, ask yourself, ‘What’s one thing I can focus on?’
if you’re feeling like you’re going in a hundred different directions, you must prioritize. Find the first domino that will impact all the others, and focus on that. Realistically, you can’t do a hundred things in a day. Focus on being effective and not letting yourself feel so overwhelmed by everything you have to do.”
To hear more about Mo’s journey to career happiness and his detailed answers to the most common questions we hear at Happen To Your Career, listen to the full podcast at the play button below.
Transcript from Episode
Scott: Welcome back to Happen to your career. I am incredibly excited to be back on the show with another guest and not just any guest is it turns out this is somebody extra special extra special because he works with us on our team getting the see a front row seat to helping people make very large changes in their lives and careers and do what they really actually want to be doing and making that happen. But he’s gone through and done so many twists and turns within his own career. He has walked to the walk as it turns out and for all of those reasons really excited to have with us today. Career coach Mo Chanmugham, did I totally butcher out.
Mo: Hey Scott. No, that was very great.
Scott: Alright, Josh we’re going to cut that if that second part out here, but yeah, I’m really glad to have you Mo.
Mo: Oh happy! Very excited to be here.
Scott: You know, I you and I got to talk a little bit before you press the record button and I absolutely am very excited for this conversation one just because I have enjoyed every interaction that I have ever had with you ever since we very first met. And I suppose that’s part of the reason why unsurprisingly we brought you on to the team, but I’ve just been really impressed with not just how you help people on our team, but also what you’ve done for yourself in your own career and some of the decisions that you’ve made along the way so we’re absolutely going to talk about that. But I’m curious why did you get into career coaching. So that’s a big part of what you do now and one of the big roles that you play in your life these days, but why did you get in the career coach in the first place.
Mo: Yeah. absolutely. So the first let me say it’s definitely been a mutual love Fest. So I’m glad I’m finally part of the team here and also for me this is exciting because I’m a longtime listener and now to be a guest and part of the Happen To Your Career team is a pretty exciting for me. So I’m sort of going to be a little fanboy here and listen you know that
Scott: I appreciate that.
Mo: Yes, so the question the question of how I became a career coach is actually really interesting. I like to say I’ve had several dream jobs in my career. Let’s see first sort of leaving College of the Marketing major and landed a job working at Reebok if their headquarters in Massachusetts, that was a Marketing associate there right out of college and
Scott: Look how cost you do get it. I’m super curious about that when you started in marketing what caused you to actually start there? Where going to go all the way around because clearly you haven’t always had been a career coach, right and no through this really interesting set of career decisions along the way and you’ve had multiple dream jobs as you put it and I totally understand that. I’ve been there too. So what cause you to get into Marketing in the first place.
Mo: Yes, so for me, I’ve kind of always knew what I wanted to do so back then when I was going through college I was Business Major and back then it was either you focus on finance or accounting or marketing and I’m definitely not a numbers guy and I was always attracted to the idea of working in the sports and entertainment industry. I kind of just paid attention to my own interests and I love movies and TV and sports back then and working in that in those Industries same like that the right choice for me so and I love the idea of marketing and being created and things like that. So marking was a good fit for me, and it was actually my Professor senior college I went to Boston University, you know born and raised in Boston. He was actually the head of online marketing at Reebok at the time and he was sort of a young Prophet internet Prodigy. He was probably only a few years older than me at the time. But anyway, he was our professor. Him and I had a good relationship and come graduation time he was hiring and I got hired to work on his team so that was really exciting coming out of college landing a job at Reebok essentially doing exactly what I wanted to do and it was fun. You know, we’re going to be back headquarters at the time. We were partnering up with I’m dating myself here. But you know, we were partnering up with athletes like Allen Iverson and Steve Francis and people like that for the NBA. And it is almost like working at a supercharged summer camp. I mean we play basketball at lunch and you know soccer outside and all kinds of stuff is a pretty cool place to work. Yeah, great job coming out of college. And I loved it. It was great time and but I would say for me the learning curve was pretty fast and a few things started to happen. I would say about a year and a half into it, you know working for a big company is one of those things where either you love it or you hate it and I’ve come to learn that I’m more of a small company type of type of guy. I don’t like feeling like a cog in the wheel. I don’t like feeling like, you know decisions being made that I have no impact on and that was happening a lot about every buck command. Not that I went in expecting to make decisions. But you know you as you if you’re young and your career you want to pay attention to the to the environment and see what you like and what you don’t like about it?
Mo: So yeah, I just didn’t feel like you know, it was fun to work at a big corporation like that and also quite frankly, you know after about a year and a half. I was kind of like not excited about learning how to sell more shoes online needed the bottom line of making more money for Reebok just wasn’t exciting to me anymore. And I feel like there’s something else out there for me. And so I started thinking about what I wanted to do next and in law school kind of popped into my head and you know for no other reason just the fact that it felt like a noble career where you can still make a good living. And otherwise I had no contact with attorneys. I didn’t know what it reads did other than you know what I knew from watching way too much law and order but life actually took me to Los Angeles so we’ve offered going to around the playoffs. I actually got laid off after about a year and a half there and I actually ended up moving to Los Angeles had a bunch of friends from law school that were out there had family out there. And booked a one-way ticket to LA and and kind of got coffee entertainment industry bug and through my contacts there. I was able to land a job working for one of the big cow agency out there and that was such a cool experienced. I mean you really have to sort of quintessential starting off in the mailroom working your way up to an assistance desk. Then you become a junior agent than a more senior agent and so on and I was in that world of like avis hollywood actors and directors and as literary agent, I got to our clients were the screenwriters of Motion Pictures of major films. And it was cool to be an assistant. You really sort of got to see the insides of how movie deals get put together and go working our counterparts with we’re at this at the major Studios like Warner Brothers and Universal and Sony and things like that.
Mo: And again, you know, I was following that theme of I love sports entertainment and here I was getting a chance to work in the entertainment industry and you’ll also see the theme of every job I’ve ever landed was because I knew somebody that needs somebody. I’ve never had to rely on my resume no matter where I went to college or what my GPA was so, you know that informed a lot of my coaching now and to me it’s all about networking and connections and building good relationships. It makes the job search infinitely easier.
Scott: An infinitely more possible to, love that.
Mo: Yeah, exactly. Like, you know, I really know I can’t imagine how hard it would be to get a job at a large talent agency simply by applying online.
Scott: Oh, my goodness does number have to be a infinitesimally small right
Mo: Yeah I mean and because what I learned from the inside was listen, I was someone who was a young 20 something working there, but I was working alongside guys to had, you know, we’re 10 years older than me and we’re all starting in the Mailroom pushing a mail cart making like, you know 300 400 500 bucks a week back then and but these were guys who were older than me least of six-figure careers on Wall Street and from Major law firms in New York and major cities all coming to chase that dream working in the entertainment industry. And so I can only imagine how competitive it is. I mean can’t imagine they even looked at anyone who applied online for those types of jobs. I think everyone got in because they had a connection and they really hustle to stand out.
Mo: Yeah. And you know quite frankly I think sports and marketing and entertainment. Those are pretty competitive fields because people really want to work in those fields and they don’t pay a lot in the beginning. So you really have to want to be in there. Be there at to work in those jobs. And so working as the entertainment was awesome. I loved it for as long as I did it. But I also saw there that it wasn’t the right fit for me pretty quickly. But about a year in you know, you kind of see how crazy the personalities are. There’s a little bit about toxic work environment that I won’t get into some of the shakiness of the entertainment industry, but for people who didn’t their can they can attest to how crazy it is and if you’re a fan of entourage. You know how poorly assistance get treated in that world. And for me I kind of had a little too much self-respect to put up with him with that kind of treatment. So
Mo: You know, another thing I would point to is that even back then I was able to sort of assess who was above me. So with the agents and senior agents above me. I did tell that there is no one in the leadership of the company that I wanted to be like they were all kind of jerks and really sort of fell from self-absorbed and narcissistic and you know, that’s just not who I wanted to be and if that’s who I need to be to sort of climb up the ranks then I knew this wasn’t for me as well. Not to say that, that’s all of them the entire industry. Back, then that snapshot of when I was there. That’s what I saw and so for me, that’s when I started looking again and the idea of law school came back up and I went ahead and applied in the back to these coasts and and what to law school, and the still was still the desire to work in entertainment industry and again through networking and this was through a very random college friend who had no ties in entertainment industry except for one random connection. I use that connection to land a summer internship working for the in-house legal department of Def Jam records in New York City
Mo: And from there, I went on to graduate and work for Def Jam, you know as a law clerk there. So my first job out of law school was working in house in Def Jam legal department. Again. He another dream job couldn’t believe I landed it. And once I was on the other side what I saw was man, I mean I was the only person hired that summer to work there and when I was there I saw students from you know from the top law schools in the country were talking like Harvard, Yale, Stanford sending my boss, like gift baskets and letters of because then maybe they met him at a conference or something like that. Like these kids were doing exactly what they were supposed to do as far as you know, you know sending letters and in reaching out to the right people. But you better believe that the you know senior VP of legal and business Affairs at Def Jam is not sort of reading your letters or have the time to sort of or carrot cares about your tears your package. Just way too busy for that care packages ended up coming to me the other sort of assistance that I guess I got to dig into the thing. But to me again, I was just very telling like I noticed that like, you can’t just sort of mail stuff in and hope to get some of the tension. Like I’m the only reason I got through the door was because I had a personal contact made some introductions, but then I took it from there. And I noticed that even if you know another big lesson, I got from that experience when I was an intern at Def Jam was the day you show up as an intern at a company like that. It’s a pretty informal work environment, you know, you’re in jeans and sneakers people have TVs and couches and stereos in their offices. You know, it’s not traditional necessarily professional sort of corporate work White Collar work environment. It wasn’t like that like you would find in a standard law firm or something like that. So in there certainly, no sort of formal internship training program. Like I showed up all eager to do my best and impress everyone and it was almost like they didn’t even know I was coming so I had to really like hustle and build relationships with the handful of attorneys in the legal department. So they could trust me with giving me an assignment. You know, it’s not like someone’s there thinking about. Oh, we need to make sure Mo has a good experience here and learn something they were busy doing their work. So for me, I learned a great lesson in building relationships and earning people’s trust so that they would say hey Mo, would you mind looking up this. you know this clause in Method Man’s contract or you know, we’re working on this deal could you know draft this letter and use this template to do that.
Scott: I just love that you’ve slipped in there. Can you look up this clause and Method Man’s contract? That just does my heart good.
Mo: Well, I mean that was how cool my internship falls really. It was like oh we’re going to this meeting with you know, this is when Jay-Z was present at the time. So
Mo: You know the fact that was my work right like, oh, I’m going to a meeting with Jay-Z and you know Kanye’s new album is coming out. HSN signs Rihanna at that time and so yeah, like that was my work in that was fun and who wouldn’t want that? I felt very fortunate very lucky to be in that position. But now like if I’m sort of wrap up my story here my career path you know, what I took from all those experiences were I’m so glad I had those experiences. But you know for me there’s something that was always missing and that was this piece of fulfillment. So obviously from the outside looking in they were exciting jobs. And when I got there they were still exciting. But the shine wears off pretty quickly in jobs like that and then it becomes a job and you know, it’s not like I was hanging out with Jay-Z or Kanye West during the like that like I was just sitting in an office looking at contract and paperwork all day. So the work becomes what you do and for me again, I just felt like I wasn’t making enough of an impact with my skills. You know, I felt we got so much more to give there’s so much more I wanted to do. That I felt far away from that. So then I was really lost. You know, I’d pretty much work through my 20s and early 30s kind of knowing what I wanted to do and be very fortunate to land in all those positions, but now here I was at the end of that journey still feeling like, huh? All right, if those things weren’t do to make me happy like what am I really looking for here? and that’s when things get interesting and I had to really sort of pay attention to some of those like personal desires, but then try and map that onto a career and my job search and the one I sort of help clients with and it’s very similar to the Happen To Your Career programming as well. It’s very much geared around know yourself better. But then testing out these options that you think you might be interested in. And learning from those experiences to understand. What is a good fit not just you know, financially or status wise, but personally, like do you find the work fulfilling and to me that is now like the cornerstone of any decision I would want to make as far as choosing job is concerned. Status and money just you know, don’t bring you the happiness that you think it would. And I think a lot of people have to learn that lesson first. So making them go on inside in job going to be a much better fit in much more enjoyable.
Scott: Why do you think that is though? I am super curious about the I’ve got plenty of thoughts on that, but I’m really curious about your opinion. On why do you think we’ve sort of need to learn that individually first?
Scott: The status and the money part.
Mo: Yes I think that’s just the queue we get from society right like we’re looking for, you know when you’re in high school after that early teenage years, you know when you’re thinking about career path, I think most people, in your adult life will sort of give you that advice like Mo, here’s a good career path. You’ll make good money and you know, it’s respectable and what not. So, you know, we also have these preconceived ideas that are fed to us from other people and not that they’re necessarily bad or wrong, but no, we never question if that’s the right advice for us
Mo: Personally right and so I think successful people, we’ll take that advice and apply it but then pay attention to whether it’s a right fit for them or not. I think you know the people I see struggling with sort of making a career decision or moving forward with in their career are the people who aren’t paying attention, you know, so it’s not so much a problem. If you start off on the wrong path, I think it’s more problem if you’re just not paying attention and you know, you’re down the wrong path. You finally kind of lift your head up in your like hey, wait a minute. How did I get here and have no clue of how to get out of it or what direction you want to go into? So for me, I’m a big believer that you know curiosity is sort of the bedrock of anyone sort of successful path forward whether it’s starting a business. Choosing your career path, if you’re not curious about anything if you’re not interested in anything, that’s a problem because I don’t know how you know, I wouldn’t know how to then guide you right? Like if you know my clients or anyone who’s like sort of looking for the answer outside of them. It sounds like I’ve been looking for a long time. So if they’re waiting for someone else to tell them what to do with their lives, it’s a that’s not a winning recipe.
Scott: Well, that’s really interesting that you say that on a lot of different levels because it almost feels like the work that we have to do with people. When their curiosity has been beat out of them for one reason or another. Yeah, it’s like reignite that in some different ways so that they can then leverage that as opposed to perpetually looking for this thing that is external out there as you put it that like you’re going to I think you said that if you’re going to be looking for the thing that’s always you know, outside of you are outside or external or whatever, you said. And then they’re going to be with you for a long time, and I think that that is true on so many different levels.
Mo: Yeah, and you bring up a good point, because I think so when I work with people. What I’m sure one of the common challenges that you’re seeing with your you’re, seeing with your clients and I’m seeing the same, is that people come to me, because they think they don’t know what they want to do? Right, that’s like the fundamental question. I’m not sure what I want to do next and through my own experience having potion of people. Actually know something that they don’t know about themselves, which is they do know what they want to do next. They’re just scared to follow through on that. And so it’s funny. I kind of laugh with clients. We’re like using by like the third fourth or fifth session. It’s like all right. Now that we’ve kind of like run around in circles because you’re scared to admit. You actually do know what you want. Like we can show up at this journey for you and just like really focus on the thing that you are scared to admit yourself. So what I mean by that is, you know say someone is interested in going to the entertainment industry for example, so there’s that interest but immediately like the same the other side of that coin is the immediate sort of fear of like that’s impossible. So, like people have these desires then they have the limiting beliefs about those desires and then so which are stronger than their desires so that they just stay stuff. And they talk themselves out of what they really want to do and I call this like the cycle of stuff. It’s like you have this desire. The next thing that pops up is our all the fears based on what you know why you can’t have anything you want. And we then think it’s safer to do something else. So we all want to stay safe. Right? We don’t to make a fool of ourselves. We’re scared of rejection failure and all that terrible stuff. But what we don’t realize is that if we don’t make any effort to try, you know, we’re just going to stay stuck where we are. That’s not good either. So yes your point our jobs are to really help people,
one get in touch with what they are already know, you know, giving them permission to say that’s okay to want that and let’s figure out how to get you headed in that direction and so it’s like we help them figure out what they want and then we help them sort of clear a path to get there. I think that’s sort of the essence of what we do.
Scott: Yeah. Absolutely and vision like this big bulldozer, like running in front of you like clear kind at all these trees or any
Scott: To be able to.
Scott: Move along that path, but absolutely love that. I think one of the things that would be super cool here is if we could take some of the questions that we gotten really recently that have to do with these exact sort of things as people are making these transitions just like you’ve done so well for yourself and yes, they’re trying to figure out what do they want to be doing and how do they move further down the path to be able to get at what they want and then clear the path along the way. I want to answer few of these questions.
Mo: Yeah, and actually, you know before we jump into that there’s one critical point. I want to make that actually came up with a recent client of ours.
Scott: What’s doing?
Mo: This idea that asking for help is not something that they’re doing. And so one I mean, you know people and so the sort of perspective ship that I made with this client was, you know, imagine you’re sort of a first grader learning how we in feeling like you didn’t need help from your teacher to do that. That would be silly. Right like of course first grader, you know learning to read would need help from a teacher. And but in the context of getting help around answering these big huge questions of what do you want to do with your life to think that you can answer that question? Without sort of the help of a guy or someone who’s done this already or an expert or mentor would be silly and but yet people think that. People think they’re supposed to know exactly what they’re supposed to do. And I see that it’s coming up a lot. It’s like this sort of myth that you’re supposed to know what you want to do at the beginning of this process. It’s almost like you know, I’m an adult. I should know how to figure this out, but you don’t and that’s okay and it would be silly to sort of think that you should know how to do this. You know, you’re trying to figure out a problem need never take on before and why not get someone who’s done it before to help you with that.
Scott: You know, it’s funny like your analogy of learning how to read and I would consider learning how to read a fairly difficult thing overall right? it’s not like you just practice it once and then you’re good for the whole rest of your life.
Scott: It’s something that takes a lot of practice and experience and learning and continuously getting better at it and I would say that, in that way. It’s pretty similar, but I would also say that, you know, figuring out what you want to be doing where you want to be spending your time and effort and energy and gifts and everything is in some ways way harder than learning how to read. So it when you think about it that way it seems absurd that we wouldn’t want help with that if it’s an even larger challenge and an even larger problem than learning how to read. And you know, we would consider are considered learning how to read on our own just miraculously making that happen impossible. So, I love that analogy for all those reasons and more.
Mo: Yeah, and just to put a finer point on this, you know for anyone listening the point here is get help. You don’t have to figure this out on your own and you shouldn’t feel like you should. Have to figure this out on your own.
Scott: Yeah. We talk a lot behind the scenes about building our a team or building out your pit crew in order to help with all of those pieces and help create a support network and environment that is going to allow you to do whatever you want to do and this case obviously we’re spending a lot of time helping people figure out what their path is and how to make that happen? And that’s what we see is required to be successful and yet you know as you said it we all believe that we have to sort of I don’t know. It’s part of adulting or something like that. I don’t even know where it comes from necessarily that we have we have to do it on our own and that’s in reality.
Scott: Very cool. I appreciate you pointing that out because I think that’s really relevant here and also interestingly enough. These are people, we’re going to read off a few questions here and then we’re going to go through these but these are people that I don’t think all of them were necessarily super comfortable in asking these questions and trying to get help for themselves in a variety of different ways and they still did it anyways, which is pretty cool to see. Even if they don’t necessarily, yeah, so
Mo: Yeah. No, that’s good. That’s good point out that that our students are feeling comfortable enough and brave enough to post these questions to the group and get some feedback.
Scott: Absolutely, so I want to read off these will take this first one first and this comes from Anne and she says I want a job that fits my strengths, but I feel like I haven’t been working in my strength for a really long period of time. It’s been most of my day outside of my strengths and I feel like because of that I need to almost refined my strengths. So, what should I be doing or what could I be doing that would help me refine my strengths and be able to find new work that actually has to do with those strengths. So this is not a small question, right?
Mo: Yeah, you know, I’m immediately struck by one. I think it’s great that she knows what she’s good at. I love when people have that confidence and can sort of state like these are my strengths. These are these what I’m good at and so it sounds like she’s in an environment where she can apply those strengths. So I guess because it’s such a big question. What will sort of just make up her stereo.
Scott: Well, I think there is the little bit of the contacts knowing a little bit more about her situation. I think there’s also an element here where she feels less confident about what her strengths really are because she’s been almost. I don’t think the right word is beaten down. I don’t think that’s accurate but you know, it’s she’s lost confidence in what who she really is and what her strengths and what she actually brings to the world.I think that, that’s why she’s saying she needs to refine it. So I think that’s the element that isn’t said in that exact question part.
Mo: Yeah. Okay that makes sense. I mean If you’re in the wrong work environment, it certainly can beat you down and you can lose confidence in yourself as well. So that’s even more of a sort of critical situation, but I think you know for her and you know with the help of the program just the idea of knowing you want to sort of identify what those strengths are, right? That’s like let’s start with that. That’s like step one is getting a sense of what your strengths are, and if you can’t apply them in your current job, then, you know part of your responsibility, then it’s to maybe find some projects where you can apply that and if it’s not within work, maybe it’s outside of work. I know so for example, even when you know when I was a practicing attorney and I was making the transition into coaching. I was doing my coaching skills outside of work. Taking classes and practicing with friends and other people. So I start with the coaching skills. I had to go out there and learn them and practice them and those took place outside of work because I want to do any coaching in my day job. So, I’m wondering if she can get created there around understanding what her skills strengths are the things she enjoys doing the things she’s good at and then you know if you can’t apply them in your day job. Then you know creating an opportunity for yourself where you can volunteer do it for free create. Give yourself work the challenge of a project. I talked to a lot of people who are leaving day jobs in one career to get into coding and design things like that. All that’s being done on off hours nights and weekends. So yeah, that think is certainly some areas where she can get creative around. How she can identify those careers and then create opportunities to actually work on those strengths.
Scott: Well the couple things that I take from that and what you said and what you shared Mo are number one, this is something where you have to actually go and do it in order to rebuild that confidence. Confidence comes from having the courage to move forward and then going and doing whatever it is and finding some measure of success or some measure of wins. That’s where confidence gets rebuilt or built in the first time around. So that implies that you got to go and do it right? just like you’re talking about and number two, even if she doesn’t necessarily, you know to your point, even if she doesn’t necessarily know what those are. If she can go and experiment and do some of those things like actually go and do the things that she suspects fall into those strengths realms for her then, she’s going to have that feedback to be able to say yes this very much feels good. This very much is my strength. I want to double down in this particular area. And
Scott: If that is the case then just like you pointed out like she’s already going to have the skills in that if as she’s doing something outside of her normal job. And one thing to be even out or build on what you had mentioned is a lot of times find that within our current jobs if there’s an area that we want to explore most employers. Most bosses are not going to say no if you’re like hey!, there’s this thing that I think that would benefit the company tremendously and I’ve wanted to try for a really long time. Could I take this on as an additional project? Will still doing my normal work and be able to do this for the company and it’s something I have an interest in into and that might be able to.
Mo: Yeah, that’s a great point.
Scott: So, I think there’s a variety of different ways and love what you were talking about there. That’s amazing.
Mo: Yeah, I’ll you give an example from one of our recent clients who wanted to take on more public speaking. I’ll get better at public speaking and so offer to do different presentations and workshops within his organization that was initially part of his job description but that was happening within the department and his team was happy though. Happened you more of that so i thought that was a great way for him to build a skill set in a sort of safe and easy and harmless.
Scott: That’s super cool. Absolutely love that.
Scott: So here’s another question then, this one comes from Catherine. And Catherine says I’ve selected some roles to be able to test out if you refers to you the Goldilocks method which by the way, we did an episode a while back on. How to design career experiments and one of the methods that we talked about in there is the Goldilocks method. So that’s what she’s referring to where you where you go and you identify some of the different roles and people within those roles to be able to go and interact with and learn, you know, what do they love about the role? And you know, what does it actually take to be in that role was it take to be successful and many other things to try and determine hey, this roles a great fit or this chair is too big the stairs too small, but the social Goldilocks version of that. And she goes on to say the roles I’ve chosen to test are librarian instructional designer, training and development specialist in science writer and she says where I’m getting stuck is in knowing where to go to find people to interview the have these roles and I’ve gathered contact information for people in my network these roles such as Librarians in my life and people who have colleagues controls and I found names of other contact, but she’s wondering what is the best approach here? She said she’s considering researching companies to see if they list out who had have this role and train to continue our research from there. But you want to find this contact information. She wants to find these people who are there and she’s wondering the best way to do that. What do you think.
Mo: Yeah. Well, so first I think it’s great that she know she’s already reached out to friends and family and people that she knows that’s brilliant. But you know Scott, I don’t know if you know if you’ve heard of this sites called LinkedIn.
Scott: Whoa, hold on. I have heard of it.
Mo: Well, let me tell you about it because it’s a job, secret’s best friend, but no seriously. Linkedin is one of my favorite tools and I love it and I love helping clients, use it better and more effectively, and that would be sort of my next step for her and okay great. So you have this idea of job titles and if you have an idea of like the company that you would want to work for then there’s great way to sort of go on LinkedIn plug in the company name go to the company page. Click on who works there and then use the filters to identify people with that job title. And then boom. There you go. You got a list of x amount of people that you can reach out to. And then as you and I know there’s a great, you know, there’s right wrong ways to message people and connect people on LinkedIn. So, you know, we could we provide that coaching for her. Around how to reach out to people and then you take the from there essentially, you know doing an informational interview with people that have interesting career that you think you might be interested in and to your point the Goldilocks methods perfect, because what you learn is from these informational interviews is oh this feels like a good fit or that’s not what I thought it was and I now realize that’s not that’s not right for me. Like that, but yeah, that’s probably one of my favorite and I feel easiest ways to start to gain some clarity around what you want to do next.
Scott: Very cool. So, how might that look let’s say somebody does want to go the extra step and they want to message somebody on LinkedIn you and I both know.
Scott: There’s no perfect script that works for everybody and in some cases you’re going to have to modify in a variety of different ways in order to be more effective. Plus some people just don’t even look at their LinkedIn. So there’s that factor too in terms of like LinkedIn maybe isn’t a good contact but if they wanted to do that and they wanted to get started and we’re not gonna be able to cover 100% of all the ways that you can do that here. what an example?
Scott: What that reach out might sound like her look like.
Mo: Sure so just from a framework perspective, when you look to connect with someone on LinkedIn, you want to personalize the note the connection request, and you would say something like “Hi. My name is Mo. I’m a law student interested in entertainment law. I see that you work in entertainment law. I’d love to ask you a couple questions about your career path and so pump up to do it. Thanks, Uhm and leave it at that. So that connection request introduces you. Lets them know why you’re reaching out and lets them know you’re interested in their career path. So, you know, it’s kind of like a sort of a little bit of flattery there where you’re not asking for a job. You’re just asking to learn more about their career path, which I think is sort of an easy thing. People can say yes too. So that’s how I would sort of frame that outreach.
Scott: Love it. Absolutely.
Scott: You can just surely fake it but that flattery is very helpful, as long as it’s true and that you are interested legitimately.
Mo: Right. Well, hey, you know Exactly, flattery or just showing that you know, you actually look at that person’s profile and you sort of pick something specific out of that profile so you can be you know, I’m interested in what you do. Because I’m interested in working at XYZ company or in this industry or see, you know, you were to so-and-so college as well. I’m an alumni from that college as well. So, like whatever you want to use as sort of your hook to connect with them, and let them know why you’re reaching out to them. Like you said, it could be a number of different things, but you know that example. It was talking about the fact that they work in the industry that they want to work is.
Scott: Very cool. Absolutely. Love it. Let’s do one more question. I think we got time for one more here.
Mo: Sure. Yeah.
Scott: So, This actually there’s five or six questions here that are very similar. So I’m going to pull from a couple of them here that we’ve had a really recently about time and energy. We all know that if we’re going to make a change like this, especially one to work that we actually want to be doing. It requires no small amount of time or energy and action to be able to make that happen. So a variety of people had asked to something very close to the effect of hey I’m finding that I only have limited amounts of time and energy to be able to make this transition and furthermore. My schedule has a tendency to change with things like travel. And other things that pop up along the way. What can I do in order to make sure that I am being able to make enough time? when my schedule bouncing all over the place and also have the energy to be able to make this transition successful.
Mo: Yeah, it’s great question. So, you know, We’re all busy, you know, there’s so many projects were all working on that. So if you have a full-time job families got children and trying to make a career change and you’ve got a full plate already so with that being said, I think this this sort of time management question can be looked at a few different ways in one way out I’m seeing that It is important to look at is managing your expectations. If you already have a busy life, it sounds like this person does with travel and unpredictable schedule like you might want to sort of you might have to change your expectations about what sort of a perfect schedule looks like or you necessarily having the energy to do it all every day. So I think that’s something to look at its let’s change expectations here because I think we sort of beat ourselves up for not doing enough. Meanwhile, you know, you’re tired at the end of the day, you know, and I think that’s something to consider where a lot of us beat ourselves up where we probably should have to be. so changing expectations around how much you can actually get done. With all that you have to do what I think is important and then I guess the second thing I would say to that is, you know, I love one of the questions from the career change boot camp program. Around the specific topic coming from “The One Thing” book by Gary Keller, right?
Scott: Yeah and Jay Papasan, who was the co-author was on the podcast. I can’t remember which episode of while back as well.
Mo: Right? Yeah, exactly and I mean talk about it a question that’s going to just cut through all the noise is what’s one thing you can focus on. That by doing so will make everything else easier. I mean that question is so simple and beautiful and Powerful but you know if you’re feeling like your going in a hundred different directions, you got a lot of things to juggle part of this is the responsibility of prioritizing and a great way to prioritize is asking yourself that very important question of what’s the one thing? What’s that like me domino thing that will impact all the others and so focus on that. You know delegate or eliminate, you know, the hunt goes things on your to-do list because realistically you can’t do a hundred things in a day. And really focus on being effective and not letting yourself feel so overwhelmed by everything you have to do. So yeah, I guess those are being sort of my one part two part answer their part 1 and part 2 is manager expectations and focus on the most important thing and eventually of all get done if you do that. So yeah as much as I manage to that.
Scott: It’s kind of miraculous how that works. You know, I think that.
Mo: Yeah, right.
Scott: There’s there’s two sides to it one if we’re in a situation that is not exciting to us and we want to make a change then a lot of times. We want it done sooner rather than later on the flip side.
Scott: You know if we’re going after something that really is I guess you could say something that very few other people in the world how where we want to be able to do work one that that excite us and feels purposeful and meaningful and we get paid well for it. And all of the other things that we have a tendency to want if you’re listening to a show like this and that is less common in the world. So therefore it takes a higher degree of action. And sometimes more time along with wet that action. So then it’s this really interesting balance of wanting that now and desiring it now versus doing something that is harder and does take more action and I think exactly what you just said is super important. You have to you know, that you’re not gonna be able to do everything. So you have to do the most important things and then you have to be okay with doing those most important things. Because otherwise, it’s not going to happen. But it is the thing that I always hear from many of our students and if you’ve listened to the show, you’ve probably heard this from a few different interviews as well. Is that. It’s surprising looking back how quickly your life can drastically change. It when it doesn’t feel like that in the moment necessarily, but when you’re on the other side of it and I realize that..
Scott: When it’s only been four months or it’s only been five or six months or something like that. It’s surprising how quick that can add up when you’re focused on the exact two things that you just mentioned most. I so appreciate that on many different levels. And I am repeating it again because it’s just really powerful and that in some ways if there was one secret that is a big part of it.
Mo: Yeah, no, it’s your point. I think it’s always going to take longer than you want, you know as a job seeker can never go fast enough. So when you’re on the other side of it. You kind of see the wisdom in that you kind of see like all right, like it took the honor that was supposed to take.
Mo: So yeah, I think people should to give themselves the grace and not being self love about how long things take into sort of focus on. You know what’s in front of them?
Scott: Well, you heard it here first definitely take that advice and Mo I show appreciation you taking
the time and making the time this has been a big another you did not disappoint a yet another super fun conversation.
Scott: Just every time I get to chat with you I’m so glad that we have you on the team.
Mo: Thank you. We’ll listen. It was an honor to be on the podcast. I love what you are doing what you created and I am so looking forward to you know, putting more people through the program. And changing some lives here. So if you’re thinking about joining do it, we’ve got you covered.
Scott: Absolutely. Love it. All right.