A Rant on the Gig Economy and Working Yourself to Death

Often, I am very grateful to Carol Roth for letting me post a rant on her award-winning blog. Two clients sent me the same article, and it made my blood boil both times I looked at it.

We keep hearing about the “gig economy” – but the definition of what that actually is can be fluid, to say the least.

I bring some sanity to an insane world and discuss why being a commodity isn’t sustainable, and how people can work themselves to death in any situation (corporate or entrepreneur).

You can read “Agency and the Gig Economy: Don’t Be an Idiot” here.

3 Speaking Gigs in 7 Days Is a Bit Much

I was one tired speaker after this busy week of three speaking gigs within one week. Yikes!

But I am pleased to report that I was able to inspire many job seekers to see possibility, which is the reason I get out of bed in the morning.

Here’s where I spoke:

Community Career Center
Talk: Productivity: The Secret Sauce for Successful Job Search
March 16, 2017 • Naperville, IL, USA 10:00-11:30 AM CST

Community Resource Center
Talk: Re-Launch You: Liftoff After Layoff (1-hour talk)
March 20, 2017 • Lake Forest, IL, USA 1:30 PM CST

Success Job Club at the McHenry County Workforce
Talk: Re-Launch You: Liftoff After Layoff (1-hour talk)
March 22, 2017 • Woodstock, IL, USA – 1:00-2:30 PM CST

Webinar with MBO Partners – Starting a Solo Consulting Business

Oh my goodness, this is a topic near and dear to my heart. I thoroughly enjoy working with solo consultants, helping them grow practices doing work that they love with clients they love to work with.

It was a blast to do this webinar with MBO Partners, a company that provides back-office support to consultants.

The first time I gave this presentation several years ago I called it “Off the Cliff: Is There a Net?” Here’s the presentation deck:

And here’s the webinar recording:

2016: Year in Review

Mira Vista

Snow-capped mountains ring Rancho Mirage

A lot of people were looking forward to dropkicking 2016. I have to say John Oliver’s skit had me doubled over laughing (and I watched it at least five more times over the next few weeks).

Still, there were some highlights, so here’s the recap. It’s always therapeutic to go through this exercise.

Overall, I had 19 speaking gigs and published lots of blog posts on topics related to career transition and small business. I am very proud of the content I created this year.

Major Client Wins

I might call this the year of the underdog. The clients I was able to help the most had lost their faith in themselves, or had been in an extended transition.

  • I helped a client who had been out of work for almost three years get back to work in six weeks.
  • I helped a client leverage her experience and land a great opportunity with a 70% pay boost.
  • I helped a client who had been out of work for 18 months land a project at a Fortune 50 brand in a little over a month.
  • I helped a stay-at-home dad of 15 years get back to work.  
  • I did a rush rework of a resume, positioning a client for a change of industry, and she immediately got into the interview cycle for a great job and received the job offer.
  • I helped an IT project manager who never really gelled in corporate gain enough confidence to try going out on his own as an independent consultant.
  • I helped one client go from entrepreneur to employee – and then to independent consultant.
  • I re-launched many more professionals who had lost confidence in their skills.

Winter 2016

view from tapas place

Eating tapas outside in downtown Palm Springs

I started the year in Palm Springs, one of my favorite places. That wasn’t too bad. I was there for a week, escaping the Chicago freezing weather.

Everyone was looking at me like I was nuts when I went swimming because it was only 65 degrees out, except the Canadians at the hotel – they understood. Continue reading

Rob Bell and the How To Be Here Experience

rob-bell-speaking

Rob Bell at Wanderlust Hollywood 11/19/2016

What were the odds that I would just happen to be in the Los Angeles area for the final stop of Rob Bell’s “How To Be Here Experience” in West Hollywood? What a fabulous stroke of luck!

I was in the front row for this talk. Rob is an amazing speaker and I wanted the up-close-and-personal experience.

Rob said that he decided on this in-the-round configuration because he wanted it to feel like a big living room. I wasn’t more than three feet away from him for seven hours. But how do I describe this riveting one-man show?  Continue reading

Why Gratitude Is More Important Than Ever

View from my balcony in Ojai, California

View from my balcony in Ojai, California

What a wild few weeks! As we head into the Thanksgiving holiday here in the United States, I realized that I should share some things I have learned about gratitude.

I’m sure that you’ve read about how easy and helpful a gratitude practice can be, but what you might not know is the incredible power it can have. Continue reading

How I Am Choosing to Get Past the Election

dark-before-dawnYesterday, on election day in the United States, I traveled across the country from Sarasota, Florida to Ojai, California. Sea to shining sea (almost). What a beautiful country I live in.

I woke up at 4:00 AM because I was still on Eastern time. I saw the election results. First, I was stunned. Then I went into shock.

I’m not usually one to talk about politics, but in this case I need to make an exception. It won’t cost me any clients because if you voted for him, you won’t be drawn to me or my teachings.

This November I am making a huge investment (for me) in my skills and my business. Last week I attended Michael and Amy Port’s Heroic Public Speaking Live event in Ft. Lauderdale. Now, I am in Ojai about to work with Max Simon of Big Vision Business on how to scale my business in a big way.

I am spending thousands of dollars on this. I found myself thinking that I would not have made that investment knowing what I know today. I feel that we are truly on the brink.

I can’t feel this way and do the type of work I do. Often, I have to help people out of the black pit of despair so that they can create clarity and confidence, find focus, and move forward. (That’s been my tag line for years.)

Therefore, I can’t be in the black pit of despair myself.

So, I started doing what I would do after any life disaster. I started looking for the lessons. And I started looking for a silver lining. Continue reading