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In this interview series, we caught up with Kathy Caprino from Ellia Communications who shares her expertise and insights about the job search, career change, etc. in today’s marketplace.

Tell Us a Little Bit About Your Company

My company offers top-level career coaching and consulting for women, as well as a wide array of programs, services, training, and resources that help professional women “dig deep, discover their right work, and illuminate the world with it.”
Key offerings include the weekly Finding Brave, podcast, the Amazing Career Project 16-week career growth course, the Amazing Career Coach Certification training, and the Close Your Power Gaps course and membership program designed to help women address and close the most damaging power gaps that women face today.
Kathy’s new book, Close Your Power Gaps, due out Summer 2020 from HarperCollins Leadership, explores these gaps in-depth, and offers new solutions for becoming more powerful, impactful, and authoritative in our careers and work-lives.

How Did You Get Started in This Path?

I had an 18-year corporate career in marketing, market research, and product management, and while it was successful on the outside, it was highly unsuccessful on the inside.
I faced bumps in the road that turned into full-blown crises including sexual harassment, gender discrimination, chronic illness, zero work-life balance, narcissistic bosses and toxic colleagues, and more. But worse than all of that was the feeling of purposelessness in my work – doing work that wasn’t contributing anything meaningful in the world.
After a brutal layoff in the days following 9/11, I had a true awakening (thanks to a powerful conversation with my therapist) that I wanted to help people not hurt people and be hurt, and I decided to go into the helping profession.
I become a marriage and family therapist, which was a life-changing experience, and I also discovered coaching and trained as a coach.
That journey led me to focus on career coaching and consulting for women, which brought with it the desire to build a business centered around bringing new solutions to the table for women at work.

Is This Something You Decided Early on in Your Career?

I write about this frequently – that I had some great skills, talents, and passions early on in life, including writing, performing, psychology, helping people, managing projects, leading — but I bailed on all of it starting with my very first job.
I took the first job that was offered to me, which was a marketing role in science publishing, which I disliked.
I had fantasized about being an impactful book editor at a great fiction publishing house, but from the second I started working full-time, I gave up on my dreams.
Until my breakthrough experience at age 41, after my layoff from a toxic company that crushed me. I decided then and there that I’d never again let go of my dreams for who I wanted to be in the world and my work.

What Is the Best Career Advice You’ve Ever Received?

There’s so much! I’d say the best advice that I leverage every day and help others do the same, is that the happiest, most successful careers are built by tapping into work you’re passionate about, and leveraging your natural talents and skills – the ones that come easily to you and bring great reward.
As Maria Nemeth shares in her great book The Energy of Money – People are happiest when demonstrating in physical reality what they know to be true about themselves, and when giving form to their Life Intentions in ways that help others.

What Is the Most Exciting Part of Working in This Industry?

For me, it’s being about to help professionals overcome what I call their “power gaps” and their areas of insecurity, confusion, and doubts about their worthiness and value, and start making the impact they dream to.
For me, it’s a dream come true to do this work and to leverage all that I’m passionate about, including personal and professional growth, communication skill, branding, marketing, speaking, and more.

How Do to Stay Abreast of the Industry as an Expert?

I’m a Senior Contributor on Forbes writing a weekly blog called “Career Bliss” which allows me to interview true movers and shakers and influencers in the world of business, leadership, entrepreneurship, writing, and creative life.
This helps me stay abreast of the world’s top strategies for business and career growth and leadership.
In my career coaching and consulting, I believe in drawing on developments and innovations from not only coaching but a wealth of other industries and fields that can help us understand how to reach our highest potential. 
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What Are Some of the Things That You See Job Seekers Struggle with the Most?

Read my book Close Your Power Gaps!
The top 7 gaps are:
  1. Not recognizing your talents, gifts, and accomplishments
  2. Communicating from fear, not strength
  3. Reluctance to ask for what you deserve
  4. Isolating from influential support
  5. Acquiescing instead of saying “stop!”
  6. Losing sight of your thrilling dream and 7) Allowing the past to define you.
I’ve just launched a survey that’s quantifying the degree to which professionals are suffering from these gaps and 98% of professionals surveyed have at least one of these gaps, and 75% have 3 or more at the same time!

What Are the Common Mistakes That You See Them Do?

Check out my Finding Brave podcast interview with Austin Black on How To Land a Dream Job at the Salary You Deserve for overcoming the common mistake job seekers make. 

How Should Job Seekers Approach Job Search Today?

I think even the termjob seeking is now outmoded and incorrect.
We shouldn’t be searching for “jobs,” per se. Instead, we need to be continually bringing ourselves out in the world, networking, and connecting with influential supporters who can help us intersect with amazing opportunities that will move us forward.
Over 80% of jobs today are found through networking, NOT through applying online and other outmoded strategies.

What Is the Biggest Trend(s) You See That Job Seekers Will Face in the Next 2-3 Years?

Top jobs are becoming more scarce and far more competitive to land. Those who haven’t worked in the field of their choice or achieved some great experience and outcomes, along with strong recommendations, will find it very hard.
Also, it’s very sad to say, but many boomers are finding that there is age bias in the numbers of critical jobs such as digital marketing and analytics. Stay very current with your skills and keep expanding your toolbox to stay competitive.

What Is One Advice You Would Give Someone Just Out of College Today?

You need to start developing your talents and skills, and pursuing and honing them, well before you are out of college.
The internships and work experiences you have before you graduate will be extremely instrumental in landing a great job that will move you forward after you graduate.

What Is One Advice You Would Give Someone Who Is Switching Careers?

Follow Kathy Caprino’s five-step process before you switch.

The key steps are:

  1. Step Back for an empowered perspective of who you are and what you’ve accomplished,
  2. Let Go – of the thinking, patterns, and behaviors that keep you stuck (because if you don’t do that now, they’ll repeat in your next career),
  3. Say YES! to your most compelling visions and keep moving forward to those,
  4. Explore and Try On – the top three career directions before you leap, and
  5. Create It SMART – with specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and timely goals and an accountability structure.
Check out my Amazing Career Project career course for all these steps and more. 

How Should Job Seekers Get the Most Out of LinkedIn?

Connect, connect, connect, and reach out to everyone you know to share what you’re hoping for, and ask if they have any ideas for you or anyone who would be helpful to speak with.
For tons of powerful tips for how to leverage LinkedIn, listen in to my Forbes webinar on “Polish Your LinkedIn Profile for Success” that I co-hosted with Kimberly Horner, Forbes’ LinkedIn editor.

What Is the Biggest Trend(s) You See That Hiring Managers Will Face in the Next 2-3 Years?

Today, workers want and expect much more from their employers than ever before, including accountability, flexibility, diversity, trust, and transparency.
If your organization doesn’t demonstrate those traits, you won’t attract or retain the top talent.
And as employees continue to build their brands and their networks, top talent is being courted daily by organizations that are more attractive and compelling.

Kathy, What Is You Currently Working on?

I’m so excited to be completing my new book, Close Your Power Gaps, and launching a new course by the same name, designed to help professional women experience more power, impact, and success on their terms, and reach their most thrilling potential.

What Are the Best Resources You Recommend to Job Seekers?

Robert Half offers a great list of top websites for job seekers here 
Also, find podcasts and resources that are specific to what you want to achieve specifically. For instance, if you want to learn from amazing leaders, business experts, and influencers who have “found brave” in pursuing their best and most thrilling work and doing it with great success, check out my podcast Finding Brave and my Forbes blog “Career Bliss.”
And for a course to guide you through the 16 essential steps to build your amazing career, visit my Amazing Career Project course
All the best wishes from Kathy Caprino!

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Kathy Caprino and Ellia Communications has also been featured in our recent compilation of the most resourceful career experts and career blogs –  Top Career Advice Websites.   

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