Category Archives: Career coaching

The Rabbit Hutch

Making that career transition is like finding a rabbit hutch. I was recently talking with my lovely neighbor. She had a friend over, a nice person I’ve met once or twice over the years. As the three of us were talking, I happened to mention the bunny drama unfolding in my backyard: I had just rescued a very small baby ...

The Bikini Mistake

This is a story about a mistake. That wasn’t. But it took a while to figure that out. At business school some 15 years ago, I competed in a business case competition. My idea was a woman’s swimsuit that didn’t reveal your crotch or the particular shape of your ass.  A swimsuit you could wear on a boat, for example, ...

Stepping Stones

(I met with Heather as part of a Seattle Times “Career Makeover” series and wrote the following summary of our conversation for the journalist writing the story.) Heather was feeling dated. She was sitting in my office, a Seattle Times Career Makeover subject, and worrying about the eight-year gap in her resume – a gap filled with raising kids, earning her B.A., ...

Networking Primer IV: Gone Fishing

(I met with Lance as part of a Seattle Times “Career Makeover” series and wrote the following summary of our conversation for the journalist writing the story.) I told Lance to go on a fishing trip. A successful composer, he’s ready to do something else after 15 years of writing music professionally. Something a little more family friendly. After all, ...

Networking Primer III: The Wall

I met with Mary as part of a Seattle Times “Career Makeover”  column and wrote the following summary of our conversation for the journalist writing the story. Mary wanted to talk about how to land a marketing job — but couldn’t stop talking about her work as a videographer. She’s a freelancer with clients ranging from a gaming company (“I’m ...

Career Transition as a Garden Party

This is the story I wrote up for the journalist writing the Career Makeover series for The Seattle Times. As a former journalist, I couldn’t just send her notes, I had to write the story, too! At 54, Mike has had a successfully solid career in supply chain management. For three decades, he’s been the guy that figures out how ...

Upper International

My husband took me down Upper International (a double black diamond, I’ll have you know) on the last day of the ski season this year. This is important (to me) because my season started on a green circle run as I tried to remember how to ski after 25-some years. My mid-season included a Traverse of Shame after I got ...

Networking Primer II

What do you tell a job seeker doing everything right — and still not finding work? I met with Tricia as part of a Seattle Times Career Makeover project and wrote the following summary of our conversation for the journalist writing the story. Tricia and I met at a drafty coffee shop in Columbia City. She presents as a very well-put-together, ...

The Old Man on the Bus

A favorite coaching client got blown off by his CEO. As the afternoon got later and later, my client watched the clock and seethed. He felt disrespected and unimportant. He was too busy being angry and anxious to get much else done that afternoon. “I tend to do that,” he told me. “I focus on the negative outcomes and it ...

A Room of My Own

Years ago, in one of my first coaching classes, a beloved Master Coach asked me to describe my future office where I would do meaningful work. I could see it clearly in my mind’s eye: an open window letting in a warm breeze, a green view of trees and grass, a hint of blue sea in the distance. This week, ...

The Leap

“I took a leap of faith this morning,” a favorite coaching client told me. I held my breath. “I took it,” he said. I started dancing around the living room. I’ve been working with this client for the past three months on a career transition. He’d been in corporate marketing for most of his career and wanted to move into ...

AND

A coaching client is moving to Myanmar. (Which is not what usually happens with my clients.) This client is an adventurer. If he’d been born in the 19th century, he’d have set off with Shackleton. If he’d been born in the 24th century, he’d be off colonizing new planets. Since he was born in the 20th century, he’s moving to the other ...

Wild Girl

“I’m tired of being good at camp,” my 7-year-old daughter said. That got my undivided attention. “What do you mean?” I asked her. We were driving to the kids’ first day of wilderness camp, one of a string of camps this summer. “I always stay by the counselor, do what they say,” she mumbled, looking out the window. “What if you ...

Networking Primer

I don’t know what they teach kids in college these days, but it sure isn’t the basic professional survival skill of networking. The Seattle Times selected Trevor, an out-of-work Millennial, as a “career makeover” candidate for a feature in the NWJobs section of the Sunday paper. And the Seattle Times selected me as a “networking expert” to coach him on ...

Foop Foop, Part 1

A favorite coaching client is playing small. She’s a top performer, professionally driven, highly capable – “But anybody could do what I do,” she says. This is a manager who gets top performance reviews, has a staff that would follow her anywhere, is widely respected and admired and liked – and who wants to play big. “What does that mean ...