Are you someone who dreams of a fulfilling career, but feels bogged down by challenges and setbacks? Do you feel like you’re constantly pushing yourself outside of your comfort zone, without seeing the results you want? If so, you’re not alone. But the good news is that there are ways to build resilience and overcome the obstacles that stand in your way.
As someone who is passionate about career development, I’ve seen firsthand how a resilient mindset can help people achieve their goals. It’s not just about bouncing back from failures or setbacks, although that’s certainly important. It’s also about having the right mindset, one that is open to growth, learning, and taking ownership of your career.
This is especially important in today’s fast-paced and constantly evolving work environment. As technology and automation continue to disrupt industries and change the nature of work, it’s more important than ever to be adaptable, flexible, and resilient. This means not only being able to handle challenges and setbacks, but also being proactive about your own career development.
So what can you do to build resilience and take ownership of your career? It starts with developing a growth mindset, one that is open to learning, feedback, and continuous improvement. This means being willing to take risks, try new things, and embrace failure as a learning opportunity.
It also means being mindful of your own needs and goals, and being willing to speak up and advocate for yourself. This could mean setting boundaries, asking for support or resources, or taking on stretch assignments that challenge you in new ways.
But perhaps most importantly, building resilience and taking ownership of your career means cultivating empathy and understanding for yourself and others. This means recognizing that we all have limitations, and that it’s okay to ask for help or support when we need it. It also means being mindful of the impact that our actions and decisions have on those around us, and striving to create a supportive and collaborative work environment.
In the end, building resilience and taking ownership of your career is about recognizing that we all have the power to shape our own futures. By cultivating the right mindset, being proactive, and staying true to our values and goals, we can overcome challenges and achieve success in all areas of our lives. So why not start today?
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Jennifer Dole 00:00
Hello, and welcome to #HRTechChat Podcast. I’m your host, Jennifer Dole. And today we have two amazing guests joining us to discuss organizational and career resilience. First, Larry McAlister, number one international best seller of the power to transform. Larry, welcome to the podcast.
Larry McAlister 00:27
Thank you, Jen. Glad to be back.
Jennifer Dole 00:29
And also we have Andy, who is a speaker and trainer and founder and host of the talent development think tank, and author of his book own your career own your life. Welcome to the podcast. Andy.
Andy Storch 00:47
Thank you so much, Jennifer, it’s an honor to be here.
Jennifer Dole 00:50
So great to have this conversation. I’ve really been looking forward to it. So let’s start with what you think career resilience is because that’s really the topic for today.
Andy Storch 01:05
Larry, do you want to take that first?
Larry McAlister 01:07
So to me, I think we just pull aside the word resilience for a minute. And all individuals. And I think we’ve learned this more and more through the pandemic, a focus on mindfulness, optimism, exercise, you know, putting the effort into yourself, because the new the new muscle in the workforce is your brain and soul and heart. And it’s really up to us to focus on that. So the whole person approach being healthy. Now you take that and put it into the workforce, that means you are better at overcoming challenges, you’re better at having a bad boss, you’re better at relating, and you’re betting and having a leadership, you know, so you you have the energy and the desire to overcome obstacles. And we’ve seen more and more companies through the pandemic, on the other side offer programs and are putting a stake in the ground that they believe in this. So I think personal resilience, and companies caring about well being and mental fitness is starting to drive this idea of career resilience. And I know Andy thinks a lot about career. So I’ll have him put his spin.
Andy Storch 02:16
Yeah, thanks, Larry, I agree completely. And as you know, I’m a big, you know, advocate, I’m passionate about this idea of career development. I speak in a lot of organizations, teaching people how to own their careers. And when I think about resilience, I think, technically, you know, it’s really about overcoming challenges, writing, being able to bounce back from things. And, you know, in an ideal world, you think, like, oh, I wouldn’t need to bounce back, I wouldn’t have that many challenges in my career. But really like in life, as with our career, we’re always going to have challenges, things that are going to come up, things are not going to go perfectly. And really, that’s what make life makes life and our career. Interesting, right, we actually gain a lot of fulfillment from overcoming challenges. The problem happens when it is consistently challenging and stressful. And we feel like we’re either doing work we don’t love or we’re outside, we you know, constantly outside of our comfort zone. Or we’re, you know, a lot of pressure is being put upon us. And we don’t know why we’re doing the work that we’re doing. There’s a lot of things that can affect us negatively. I think resilience is going to come from building a strong mindset and Ownership mindset, a growth mindset, a resilient mindset, a lot of that work can be done personally, through mindfulness, as Larry mentioned, through studying different things and practicing, building up that resilient mindset. It’s also going to come from empathy from a leader and an organization who is mindful about the type of work you’re asking people to do and how much you’re asking them to work and the right amount of stretch assignments and challenges and that sort of thing. There’s a lot of balance in there. But I’m a big advocate, of course, as you know, from my book, and everything are taking ownership of your career. And so an advocate of people taking responsibility for their situation and asking, Okay, if I’m not happy with this, what do I maybe want to change about it? What is in within my control to change? And what is not in my control? And what can I change? And what do I just need to accept or move on? And constantly asking those questions, and really looking inside at yourself is going to allow you to build a lot more resilience in all kinds of situations.
Larry McAlister 04:15
I just wanted one quick thing. I mean, Andy’s book really came at the right time when we really started seeing people feeling that I can have more control over my my well being and even my sort of happiness at work. And that is in your locus of control. So Andy hit right on the right at the right time with it.
Jennifer Dole 04:34
Yeah. And I think about the the definitions that the both of you have provided and I think about transitions, right? Sometimes those transitions are within our control. Sometimes they’re not within our control, but that’s really where the growth happens.
Andy Storch 04:52
Absolutely, we can influence a lot of those things, but we may not necessarily be able to control it and that’s why we’re I talk a lot about mindset whether my book and The talks I gave, I just had a talk on Sunday about this for the group of entrepreneurs. But I speak in a lot of companies that, you know, developing an Ownership mindset, a big part of it is figuring out what’s in your control and trying to focus most of your energy, what’s on what’s in your control, and trying not to worry or stress too much about the things out of your control. Like, obviously, you know, politics, the world economy, the weather, what your boss says, the company leadership, the layoffs that might be coming, like these things are out of your control. But what’s in your control is how you respond to these things, how you show up how you treat yourself and how you treat others. And that is where you really start to operate with that Ownership mindset.
Larry McAlister 05:37
And I think to add to that, we’ve seen in studies that the more you focus on your, what you can control, the more that grows, you’re able to control more and more things because you’re building the skill, to attack more things and stretch more things. So you know, if you’re focusing on things that are concerning, you have no control it, you know, debilitates you, it slows you down. And so I think Andy’s point about, you know, I just had a big transition, right, I left the corporate world almost a year ago. Yeah, it was business ready. But I don’t think I was mentally ready as I thought I was. So I really had to do a lot of work. I read atomic habits, I took this course about the science of well being, and really had to build into my routine, mindfulness and this idea of, I’m an individual now and not part of a large corporation. And it’s taken a while for me to really feel like I’m hitting my stride, personally. So I think what you guys were talking about is important, every day at work.
Andy Storch 06:37
I’m glad you you did that you put in that work, Larry, because you were doing some amazing things in the corporate world, I had a, you know, a front row seat to working with you on some stuff. And I was surprised, you know, when you said you’re gonna make this transition, but I know you had been setting yourself up for that for a long time by making connections. But I think there’s a misconception people might make that oh, you know, entrepreneurs, you probably have it much easier than corporate professionals. No Boston. No pressure, right. And I’ve been an entrepreneur now for several years. And it’s not true, right? That you put more pressure on yourself, because you’re like, Oh, I always have to be delivering and finding the next client and, and all this sort of stuff. And in general, I think entrepreneurs, on average, take less time off than employees. And that’s an important factor that goes into wellness. So you got to be more intentional about it.
Larry McAlister 07:20
Absolutely. There’s no lines, there’s literally no like, there’s no punch clock, right?
Jennifer Dole 07:24
There are no boundaries, right?
Larry McAlister 07:27
I mean, how many texts that I send you any any? How do you do this, Andy?
Jennifer Dole 07:30
Yeah. But you know, to make these changes to take ownership of your, your mindset and your career, you generally have to overcome some fear.
Andy Storch 07:47
Yeah, this is true. I think, you know, Larry was alluding to that, in some ways, right there. I don’t know about you, Larry. But obviously, when I went out on my own a few years ago, there was a lot of fear involved, there still is I absolutely love being an entrepreneur. But there’s always a fear of like, Oh, am I gonna run out of clients or money or whatever it is, and I think, you know, employee or an employee or an entrepreneur, there’s always going to be fears, and especially if you’re trying new things, or do you have big goals, things that you want to accomplish? Chances are, there’s going to be some fears involved in that. And I started actually developed or adopted a mantra several years ago after reading a book called The 10x rule by Grant Cardone, where he talked about starving your fear. So the first step, when you have fear that might be holding you back from things is to recognize what that fear is, and what it comes from. And most of our fears are sort of unjustified or unfounded. Not all, but many of them are, right for instance, you know, I kind of want to make a video to post on social media, but I’m afraid that people are gonna laugh at me or make fun of me, right. And many of us have that fear, it’s natural, just like public speaking, when logically we know like, that’s probably not going to happen. In fact, most likely, very few people are even gonna see it. And they’re just going to scroll on die, like they don’t care. And so a lot happens a lot of times with a fear. So it really starts with recognizing and being honest with yourself about your fears, and asking, Okay, why am I afraid? What is the logic behind this? Is this even a realistic fear? And then I mentioned the idea of starving your fears. And what Grant Cardone said in that book that I referenced, which is that, you know, as you have a fear, the longer you let it go, the more it’s going to grow. So you really got to starve it, knock it out right away. And so when you say like, oh, I’m afraid to make this video. I’m just gonna do it right now. And then I’m gonna see what happens, what the effects are. And then as you do these scary things, you see, oh, actually, nobody’s laughing at me actually, nobody’s even commenting or paying attention to this. Because everybody’s like focused on their own life, right? They’re not really as worried about us. And when you develop, you work on developing more of a growth mindset, which comes from the book mindset new new psychology of success by Dr. Carol Dweck, Stanford Vesser something I referenced in my book and all the talks that I give you develop a growth mindset, you realize that we grow from trying new things for getting out of our comfort zone. And whether we fail or not everything is a learning opportunity. And I’ve been able to accomplish so much more by going after the things I want to do and trying stuff, even if I might fail. And just getting past those fears. And I had a lot, a lot, a lot of fears, fear of failure rejection, for most of my life, I had to make a big shift overcome that my life’s gotten so much better. As a result. I’m always a big advocate of like, hey, go try stuff, get past those fears. Because your life’s gonna be better as a result.
Jennifer Dole 10:36
Experimentation is like such a key word for your career.
Larry McAlister 10:41
I think it’s called the spotlight effect, where you think the spotlight is on you. And everyone’s watching every move. So you’re worried about making those. So I was at the better up uplift conference, and Dr. Martin Seligman was there and he’s the, you know, the father of positives, psychology. Yeah. That, you know, it’s not about, you know, we’ll get you to a manageable life. He’s like, you can thrive. And he did. The US military asked him to figure out why are there why is there such a difference in PTSD and suicide? help us figure this out. So he did a five year study of almost a million people in the military, some deployed and some in offices. And what he found out the biggest difference of people getting through PTSD, getting through hard times and not collapsing, is optimism. The idea that this will work out, and they studied it, there’s, you know, there’s a range of optimism and negative, you know, pessimism, but optimistic people who feel it’s going to work out could still get PTSD, but would get through it faster, and would be stronger on the other side. So the question is, well, how do you become more optimistic, and I love this, two simple steps, which I like blew my mind when I was in the audience. One is, identify the voice that talks to you all day long, identify. And then when that voice is telling you, you’re not good enough, you’re gonna fail. And he said, people are gonna laugh at you, you know, you’re not loved. Treat that voice, like a third party that’s trying to ruin your life. And kill that voice. So I thought that was really powerful. Because when I get sort of anxiety, it’s usually for me, like, when I’m first getting up out of bed, I’m like, Oh, my God, what’s gonna happen? You know, all this stuff have to do today, if I can just say, shut up, you know, deep breath, 3d breaths and move that voice quiet it, you get out of bed, and it’s like, what was I so stressed about 15 minutes ago, you know, it’s overkill. So Dr. Martin Seligman, I think, really hit it on the head, a million people for five years. And that’s the outcome. I mean, you know, we try to make things more complicated than potentially they are, I think
Andy Storch 12:48
Jennifer Dole 12:50
That is. So back to career resilience, and helping individuals have career resilience. And, you know, bounce back from things that are outside of their control, or inside their control, and building their career, how can technology help, but and how can we use technology without being overwhelmed by it?
Andy Storch 13:17
I’ll defer to Larry because he’s the expert on technology.
Larry McAlister 13:19
So what I’ve been saying, and you know, I’ve been doing a lot of chat GPT lately, you know, technology, especially HR technology, to get you to the human interaction faster, and with more actionable data. So I remember years ago, I remember opening myself up to my boss and saying, I was stressed and overwhelmed. And she literally patted me on the back and said, Oh, you’ll get through it. That’s not what I needed. In that moment.
Andy Storch 13:45
Rub some dirt on it you’ll be fine.
Larry McAlister 13:48
But that’s when I started having this idea of having sort of career conversations every quarter with your boss, and I put that to to Fortune 500 company. And when I first started, it was really just a list of questions that you could talk about your future. And you could talk about what your career wants you to be in would be a timeout, that you had a more personal relationship and not interact with. Now, as technology has moved past. And I talked about this at the HR tech conference, if you have talent, mobility, like we talked about, we were both if you’re 50. When you talk about your career, you have so much more data. So it takes the pressure of your boss trying to help you, you know, better up you talk to your coach about how am I going to get better and be more resilient, and you could talk to your boss about that. You have these better interactions, because these two just those two technologies have gotten you to such much more insightful discussions where these things are much easier to bring up. So that’s why I say HR technology gets you that interaction faster with more actionable data.
Andy Storch 14:46
I agree completely. I love that and I’ll take it from a more personal level, because we have been talking about wellness and mental health and things like that, that I think for the most part technology is here to make our lives better, right? Everything is always invented for reasons to make our lives better. And we can leverage technology in so many ways to make our lives better. However, as with any good thing, it can always go too far right? And it can, it can take over and make our lives more stressful and oftentimes worse. And so I always think I’m an advocate of taking control of that situation, like taking ownership of your technology use, maybe setting some boundaries if you need it. So social media is a great example, right? Social media is something that many of us use and participate in on different levels. And I fully believe that social media is something that can make our lives better. I love being active on social media, because I’ve made so many great friends and connected with so many great people, I know what’s going on in the world. But if I don’t control it, it can, it can cause a lot of stress in people’s lives, right? Because there are, you know, many engineers in Silicon Valley working to try to make these apps as addictive as possible. So you don’t write your bet, right. And so you’ve got to realize that and take ownership and say, Okay, first of all, I want to stay away from negative type stuff, a lot of people don’t realize that you can take ownership of your feed and curate your feed and what you see. And then the algorithms do learn from what you’re doing as with a lot of technology. So if you don’t respond to negative stuff, it stops showing up in your feed, you know, as an example, with social media, and then you got to like, you know, change them in the notifications, I have a lot of mine off. So I’m not getting notified everything, every time something happens on social media. Now, there’s a lot of other great technology I use that can make our lives better, right. I use the comm app for meditation every single day. And there’s tons and tons of great resources on there. There’s lots of other mindfulness apps and pieces of technology. Things like chat GPT can make our jobs easier and better. I use Duolingo every day to learn Spanish, which is really cool. But it’s always like Bing, bing, bing is always trying to get me to come back, right? Like, how much do I want to be on there? They’re trying to make it as addictive as possible. So again, like, I think there’s a lot of ways we can leverage technology, email makes us, you know, allows us to communicate at work, right. But it can absolutely get out of control if we don’t have some type of boundaries and a strategy around how we use it. So I think technology is great. It can make our lives better. We just have to think about how are we going to own it? How are we going to harness that power and not let it get out of control? What boundaries do we need to put in place?
Larry McAlister 17:23
So let me ask you, Andy, genuine Andy a question because you’re recently out of the corporate world as well. And you’re right about this in your book about comparison and imposter, right? So I first became independent. And I’d be going through my social media feed. I was like every other how many consultants are in my space? I never knew!
Andy Storch 17:43
and they’re all so successful.
Larry McAlister 17:45
And they’re all so nice. Everyone’s a trillionaire. And I don’t know, and I can’t figure it out. And it took me a while to be like, just like Facebook, we knew 20 years ago, not every person on Facebook has the perfect life they are portraying to you. That’s right. Yeah. So but for you, Jen and Andy, I know any, it’s in your book. And Jen, you’ve you’ve recently gone independent as well, a little bit. How do you deal with comparison or imposter syndrome?
Jennifer Dole 18:11
Well, first, let’s recognize that it’s there, because it is there. And you know, I feel so grateful to have this opportunity to be a research analyst role and talking to HR practitioners, and learning about technology, and figuring out how we bring those two things together to solve problems. Like, I love that. And there’s other people doing it too. And I think more about let’s collaborate than compete. And that’s really helped me be more open to opportunities. And you know, just engage.
Andy Storch 18:53
Yeah, I’m a big fan of that. So I’m a big fan of collaboration over competition. Like you mentioned, abundance mindset. So if you’re new to that concept, let me just give you something that you can keep in mind for the rest of your life. There is an on limited amount of money, success and love in the world. Let me repeat that there is an unlimited amount of money, success and love in the world. So if some other consultant or a person doing the same thing as you is successful, that does not take success away from you, right? There are some circumstances where you and someone else may be bidding on the same job or competing for the same promotion. It’s pretty rare though, right? In fact, there’s, there’s more than enough to go around. It’s just a matter of going out and getting stuff. So I’m a big fan of collaboration over competition, not worrying as much about that. But the comparison is real. Like I get sucked into it all the time. And what we have to remember is that, first of all, never nobody else’s life is perfect. We go around, we assume that Oh, somehow everybody else has it figured out. I’m the only one that doesn’t for some reason. It’s so bizarre, but like I find myself in that space, so I know others as well. Second of all, you can’t compare your whole life to someone else’s highlight reel, which is what we see on social media, right? When people post their vacation photos, you know, somehow they don’t post about the fight they had with their spouse the night before. But what they were going to do that always dragging me around, I just want to relax. They just post the happy picture, like wherever they get to where they’re going. And then you know, when we go to that, that idea of abundance, and we just say, I’m going to learn what I can from others, I’m going to root for others other people, and then I’m going to do the best I can and mostly try to compare myself to where I came from. And we focus on the progress we’re making, then we can, we can get a lot further and be a lot happier in the process. You also mentioned impostor syndrome, which is timely for me, because I spoke at an event just two days ago for a small group of entrepreneurs who, when I got there found out we’re highly successful all running multi multi million dollar businesses. And, you know, some people may consider me successful on many levels. I’ve been running a business now, and it’s doing pretty well. But the numbers, nothing compared to what these guys are doing. So there’s a tendency to get into impostor syndrome and say, Well, what can they possibly learn from me, these guys are running these huge business. And I say, Guys, most of them were men. But of course, there’s many successful women out there as well, then. But imposter syndrome was usually happens when we have less confidence and belief in ourselves than other people have in us, right. And so I have to remind myself in that situation, that they invited me here for a reason, they wanted me to speak here for a reason, I have been studying and working on things that they have not. And I have things that I can say, that can absolutely help them do even better than what they’re doing now. And that is why I’m here. And so I’m going to lean into that. And the other antidote, I think, to impostor syndrome, is listening to people when they compliment you and tell you that you are great at what you do. Because that is going to remind you that you are very good at what you do
Jennifer Dole 21:57
A third guest on the podcast today.
Larry McAlister 22:02
So I have a little microcosm of that is some people ask, like, how do you get prepared to do a talk and they don’t mean prepare, like do a deck but how do you not get super nervous or stress out? And I always think to Andy’s point is, when you’re gonna go stand in front of a group of people, they want you to be good. They’re not hoping that you’re gonna fail. They don’t they think, I hope this guy suck today. Right? People generally want you to be successful, and they’re there for a reason. And that’s how I overcome being nervous.
Andy Storch 22:35
It’s a good reminder. I like that.
Larry McAlister 22:36
It’s like, they’re all rooting for you. Nobody wants to see it go bad. That’s their time too. I think that happens in a lot of different areas.
Jennifer Dole 22:44
So as we wrap up here, and I know we could continue on this topic, because we’re all so passionate about it. But like, what is the advice to the person that needs that pep talk right now?
Larry McAlister 23:01
So I’ll since I started with chat, GPT, I did this yesterday, I work with chap GPT. To say build me an eight week mindfulness mental fitness plan that I’ll touch three times a week, and it delivered it in about 40 seconds. So just to just to get a sense of what could you do, right? That’s what’s so great about these tools is like, I don’t know what to do. Tell me. So you can pep talk yourself a little bit.
Andy Storch 23:30
Pep Talk. First of all, I just remembered something too, that I think it’s funny when it comes to impostor syndrome, I got invited on the HR Tech Chat podcast with Larry McAllister, who I consider to be like the foremost expert on HR technology, and like, what am I doing here, but oh, we’re talking about career and resilience. Okay, I can talk about that. That’s good. So I absolutely love being here. And to, you know, take that and transition it to that pep talk. I think no matter who you are, what you’re doing, you are way more capable of achieving your goals than you think of doing great things than you think that you really just need to start with some self reflection and self awareness to like, understand who you are, where you are, and get really honest about your situation, what your challenge is, and what your goals are and what you really want to achieve. And then think about, how can I make a plan to achieve that? And what do I need help with because we all need help. Don’t try to like figure it all out on your own. And help could be reading a book listening to a podcast, it could be going to a conference, it could be hiring a coach, right? To help you specifically with that thing. I’ve had a ton a ton a ton of help on my journey to get where I am. But I set a very clear vision a few years ago that I’m going to write a book, I’m going to become a speaker and I’m gonna be working on my own in big companies. And it took some time. I overcame a lot of challenges on the way like pandemic health challenges, economy, all kinds of stuff, but I’m actually doing the thing that I set out to do three or four years years ago, and it’s because I was very clear what I wanted. I put a plan in place. And I invested a ton in myself. Both, you know, books, podcasts, like I said, conferences, hiring coaches mastermind groups asking for and getting the help that I needed to accelerate that movement and get to where I am. And I’m really pumped about where I am today, because of all the work I did. And where I am today is getting to help a lot of other people with that, which gets me so excited to do things like this. And I’m really excited for the future because I’m an optimist, Larry. Yeah. And so I’m excited where things are going and just appreciate you having me here, Jen.
Jennifer Dole 25:34
Well, thank you both for being here. Andy. You are career resilience. And I love it and Larry, you to are career resilience, and, you know, we’ve survived the twists and turns and we’re better for it. So thank you for joining me today. This is 3Sixty Insights #HRTechChat Podcast with Andy and Larry and I really appreciate your time. Thank you.