How to Find a Career You Love in a Scary New Economy [Episode 09 of The Blog Chronicles]

September 22, 2016
 / 12 comments

how to find a career

The economy is changing fast.

Globalization keeps rolling. Robotics won’t stop growing.

And good jobs are not easy to find. We are several years into an “economic recovery,” while the market trends upwards…

Yet now, part time jobs are the new norm.

The “people-to-people” economic era has arrived–a new dawn the internet makes possible. It is the driving force behind these rapid changes.

As the internet deconstructs old business models, new ones are rapidly emerging.

These job market conditions led to an explosion of “freelancers” and “entrepreneurs.”

By necessity, people are getting scrappy and innovative in their money making pursuits.

According to a 2014 study commissioned by the Freelancers Union, 53 million Americans are “independent workers.” That is 34% of the U.S. workforce.

Many experts forecast the U.S. job market will be 50% freelancers and independent workers (contractors, consultants, small business owners) by the year 2020.

Will you be one of them?

That’s the beauty of becoming a freelancer: you are your own boss, you get to set the agenda, call the shots, and make all the decisions…

If this sounds like a change you want to make, check out this interview with career coach Jessica Sweet because…

*She has made the change herself and has worked as an independent career coach for several years, using her website to market her brand and find new clients

*Jessica also helps other people transition from job employment to self employment

And there’s a bonus to Jessica’s coaching–she is also a trained psychotherapist. So she also helps people overcome obstacles between their ears.

After listening or reading the interview, let Jessica and I know your thoughts or questions in the comments.

Enjoy!

How to Find a Career You Love in a Scary New Economy

 

Jessica Sweet Interview Transcript

( For those who like to read.)

Introduction

Matthew Loomis: Hi  Jessica.

Welcome to the show!

Jessica Sweet: Thank you so much Matt.

Based on Your Thoughts, How is the U.S Job Market Looking Right Now?

Matthew Loomis: Yeah.

So as a professional career coach.

I’d like you to describe to us with some detail how the job market is looking right now in the U.S? Just based on your perspective. What you’re seeing and hearing with your career coaching business.

Not just what the government statistics are saying?

Jessica Sweet: Yeah.

The statistics, you can look at those and the market seems to be doing well.

What my coaching business is saying is, that there is a market out there. For people who want jobs…

For people who are ready to work…

I think that the market is changing, in that companies really are interested in people skills and experiences.  Not just what their resume say’s they have done.

Or what their history is.

So the statistics, you know you look at what the job market is and  you look at whether people were getting hired and May wasn’t so good… But in general, things are good.

I think the overall trend is – Yes, people are getting hired.

The people that are getting hired quickly, are the people that are networking. The people that are using their networks. People who are really looking at the whole of what they have done.

What they want to be doing and kind of showcasing that to potential employers and saying,  ”it’s not just that I’ve come from this back ground and I want to do this in the future”.

I can take these skills and make whatever the employer needs to make happen.

Because I am dynamic and I am smart. I can deliver on whatever it is you need to have happen.

So that is really what I am seeing. That the clients that I have that get hired, are the one’s that really can illustrate how they can get a job done for an employer.

Not just that they fill a hole in the companies organization.

Does a Website or a Blog Help People to Showcase Their Work?

Matthew Loomis: Do you find that a website or a blog helps people, showcase what they can do?

Like with a portfolio or things like that?

Jessica Sweet: Yeah, definitely.

I think that the first thing that employers will do is, Google you for sure.

So having an online presence whether it’s a website or a blog, or any other social media is really, really important. You definitely want to make sure that your online presence is what you want employers to see.

I think, what I have seen more than anything else is that you wouldn’t want a blog that talks about anything you wouldn’t want your employer to see, for sure.

So anything that is negative. Anything that you feel is negative.

What I have seen more than that is, the social media stuff. So your Linkedin, you know the stuff that you would expect… Linkedin, Facebook – Those accounts are the things that I have seen more than blogs.

Employers are going to scope you out they are going to read your blog entries. To see who you are, what you care about.

Yeah.

The other thing that I have seen about what is happening online in relation to employment is, really kind of interesting and creative resumes. I saw a resume recently that was posted on Linkedin. (Maybe some of your listeners have seen the same thing.) It was a resume and I think it was a developer who was applying for an IT job.

He basically made a very mini video game resume.

So it kind of had a video character and you scrolled down on your computer to make the character walk.

He walked through a landscape and as he walked  it would unfold the different worlds. The worlds talked about, ”here’s my skills world” and it talked about his skills. ”Here’s my experiences world and my education world”.

So that was his resume. It wasn’t a piece of paper, but it was a little video game, you know. He’s jumping in one world and swimming in another world.

That was very interactive. So it not only gave the information but also illustrated his abilities to do what the employer needs him to do.

He was very creative and eye-catching.

Matthew Loomis: Was this for a video game job?

Jessica Sweet: I don’t really know.

It was something that was posted on Linkedin, that I saw it and I thought it was awesome.

Matthew Loomis: Yeah.

Jessica Sweet: I didn’t investigate it fully.

Matthew Loomis: It sounds really awesome.

I’m wondering if it was like niche specific, you know.

Jessica Sweet: It was awesome!

I don’t know.

It was probably some kind of developer. It could of been related to that.

Matthew Loomis: Yeah.

Jessica Sweet: For whatever reason, he thought that was going to be the thing.

That made them say, ”WOW”! It certainly made enough people say, ”WOW”!

He was trending on like ten and even if that person didn’t hire him, somebody on Linkedin probably saw it and said, ”this guy’s creative and let me take a look at him”.

So it was a very effective resume to say the least. You know stuff like that, wanted him to demonstrate his skills, his creativity and was eye-catching.

So that’s an example of something you could do online. You could do that on your own blog. You could do something creative and interesting on your own blog. Definitely, employers are going to scope you out online and see what you’re up to.

So be up to something interesting and something that shows that you can get the job done.

Do You Have Clients From All Over the World?

Matthew Loomis: Yeah.

So just to clarify.

You also work with clients outside of the U.S,  is that right?

Jessica Sweet: Absolutely!

Yeah.

For clients all over the world.

The major places outside of the U.S that I work with people, are of course Canada. Also Australia, which I find interesting… I’m not sure if it is a cultural thing, why folks from Australia call me. So, a lot of people from Australia and all over Europe. So U.K and other places too.

So yeah, it’s been really fun to connect with folks all over the world.

That’s one of the really incredible things that I love about what I am doing. I’m just here in my apartment, in my office and I talk to folks from everywhere:)

This Applies to Our International Listeners As Well!

Matthew Loomis: Yeah.

That’s right.

I just want the international listeners to know that, even though we started off talking about the U.S job market.

Most of what we will be talking about today, applies to them as well.

Jessica Sweet: Yes. Yes it does.

Absolutely!

That’s the question that I get from clients that are calling me from elsewhere is, ”how can you help me here, if you don’t know anything about the job landscape or the job market, here”?

What I say to people about that is, that it’s maybe true that I don’t know much or anything about the market, from the place that they are calling from.

A lot of work that I do with people is about mindset.

Interestingly, that may be the majority of the work that I do, because what happens with people is that it comes down to confidence. Or interviewing skill, or different things like that.

A lot of stuff is about mindset.

The other thing that happens is, that there are a lot of questions that we come up against. Even like here in the U.S, we come up against a question and the answer is, ”neither of us know”.

We have to Google it. We have to research it. We have to go and ask people and we have to do an informational interview.

It would never be a questions that anyone would know the answer to. There’s a million questions like that in the world. I think that’s what’s happening in the world. It’s like there is so much information flying around so fast.

Being smart and being knowledgeable and being expert on something, is not about having all the information. It’s about knowing the right questions to ask.

It’s about knowing how to gather that information.

So that’s the process, really. It being able to dig in and find out how to solve the problem. Rather than having all the answers. So  that’s what I talk about when I talk about international clients.

We figure out how to solve it and I know the questions to ask, to helping you overcome the hurdles and figure out what you want to do. And how can we make that happen.

It’s Great That People are Out There Helping People!

Matthew Loomis: That’s great!

I am so glad that you are out there helping people.

I find that mindset is just a big part of blogging, you know.

Hahaha…

Jessica Sweet: Mmm mm.

Absolutely. No doubt.

Are There Many Job Opportunities for Freelancers or Home-Based Business Owners?

Matthew Loomis: Yeah.

So how much opportunity are you seeing for people today, that want to do freelancing?

Or consulting work from home or even starting a business from home?

Jessica Sweet: Well.

I think there’s a lot!

They’re called the Freelance Movement, so I think that there’s a ton and I think it’s only growing.

Matthew Loomis: that’s what I was doing four-years-ago.

Jessica Sweet: Yeah.

I think that companies are moving towards that.

I think it’s a lot less expensive for a company to hire a freelancer. It’s a lot less riskier to hire a freelancer.

So I think that the whole freelancer economy is something that’s growing. Especially millennials are pushing toward that too. It’s the whole emphasis on work – Life balance. Not being tied to a single job at forty-hours a week or more.

Having a lot more flexibility in your life. It’s just what I’m seeing of my little slice of the world. Here in the U.S it’s definitely pushing towards that.

So yeah.

Matthew Loomis: Right.

Jessica Sweet: Yeah.

So yeah, there’s lot’s of opportunity and there’s only going to be more.

Do You Encourage Entrepreneurs to Build a Website for Their Business?

Matthew Loomis: When you work with clients, that are interested in transitioning to their own home-based business.

Do you encourage them to start a website?

Jessica Sweet: Oh.

Yeah. Absolutely!

I won’t say you can’t start a home-based business without it, but I think, it would be impossibly hard without it.

You are doing yourself a huge favor by having a website. It can just happen to so many more people and everybody’s first instinct, when you hear about anything, is to look it up online. To get more information about it and if there’s no opportunity to do that, you’d just look for the next thing. So yeah…

Why It’s Easier to Be an Entrepreneur Today, Than Ever Before?

Matthew Loomis: Yeah.

You say on your website, that being an entrepreneur is easier than ever before.

Can you talk about why you say that?

Jessica Sweet: Yeah.

Years ago… and this is the most unscientific statement ever, but years ago, who knows how many years. It cost a lot to become an entrepreneur.

None of the tools that are available today, were available. If they were available, they cost so much, that they weren’t available to you and I.

You know you could not afford to do, what you can do today.

Today you need a laptop, you need to afford what you need for an e-mail list and a website and you’re basically up and running. Like there’s not much you need, it doesn’t have to cost a lot. So yeah, you can get fancy and have bells and whistles and whatever, but it doesn’t have to cost a lot.

So you can start small and build from there. It’s just amazing what you can do.

Are There Any Success Stories You Can Tell Us About?

Matthew Loomis: Yeah.

Can you, off the top-of-your-head, think of a success story in this area, that you’ve helped?

Jessica Sweet: Sure!

Yeah. Let’s see – There are so many.

I had a client who was into marketing and what she came to me with was with a ”feeling”.

Like she didn’t know what she wanted to do, but she came to me with a feeling that she wanted to offer personalized help to people. She didn’t know what that meant, it just was a feeling. She also loved to travel, so what we discovered through our conversations, was that she really wanted to do really personalized types of tours to a specific country.

Tours to a specific country that she knew very well. For a particular kind of traveler. So she worked to make that happen.

Matthew Loomis: Wow!

Jessica Sweet: Yeah.

So to get that set up, is really about connecting.

Somebody who wants something in particular with that something that she knew she had, because she was connected with that country. She had those connections in the country. She knew all the marketing stuff, because that was her background.

So she was able to tap into that market and use the online tools and make all that happen.

Obviously I am way over simplifying it.

Matthew Loomis: Yeah.

Jessica Sweet: It was more complex than that.

But she was able to do it, because she had all the tools available to her online.

Matthew Loomis: Yeah.

It sounds like though, that she didn’t have that clear direction at first.

But it was through your coaching that she was able to…

Jessica Sweet: Yeah.

Yeah.

I mean she ended up using a lot of the skills that she already had, but she took them in a real different direction. She didn’t want to go back to a marketing job. She didn’t want to do the nine-to-five.

She wanted to integrate something that she cared about.

And this ”feeling”, that was something really overpowering thing that she came to me with. Like, what she wanted, like to help people and have a really personalized something. Really high-end something and it really all came together in these really luxury travel tours.

How Long Have You Been Running Your Wishing Well Coaching Business?

Matthew Loomis: Yeah.

I see that desire to help people a lot, in people wanting to start blogs.

You know they have an idea. Or just a feeling like you described it. They know they want to help people, sometimes they’ll have a clear niche right off-the-bat and sometimes it’s not real clear.

Maybe you also had that feeling at some point, because you help people in your own business as an entrepreneur yourself with the Wishing Well Coaching.

So how long have you been running this business?

Jessica Sweet: Hahaha…

That’s a really good question.

I started out very slow, so the start date was not a line in the sand. I started just after my first daughter was born. She is eight now, but it was an evolution. It was a process of figuring out what this really was. So I started with a feeling too.

I was a therapist as I am a clinical social worker, that I did before this and then my daughter was born. Basically I was going to be forking over my paycheck to childcare.

So that didn’t really make sense.

Yes, I wanted to help people so it didn’t make sense to put her in daycare all day. So I was going to stay home and I also needed to do something. The feeling that I had was I really wanted to help people give their true gifts to the world.

I felt there was this misalignment, between what people had to give. Their skills, what was in their heart and what they ended up spending their time doing all day long.

It took me about three years to figure out what the heck that meant. Like how to actually make that happen in the world.

So first and no body really knows this, because I haven’t talked about this… I actually started my first company which was Wishing Well Consulting. I helped people like philanthropy consulting… So companies and high net-worth individuals, I helped them figure out, how to give.

”Where do you want to spend your charity dollars”? I did that for a little while, but it just was totally wrong.

Totally wrong. It just gave me a sick feeling in my stomach every time I got a new client.

Matthew Loomis: Yeah.

Jessica Sweet: I hated it.

So it aligned on paper. It looked right. It matched with what my feeling was.

But there was just something about it that was so wrong.

I went back to the drawing-board and I folded up that business, almost all the way. I like hung my head and I was ashamed.  In ten-minutes I told my family and friends, ”I am so, so flaky”. ”Yeah I thought I was going to start my business”. ”But, I’m not…”.

Matthew Loomis: Well.

You should be commended Jessica, for at least doing something and testing the waters there.

Jessica Sweet: Yeah.

Well, that’s what I realized later.

Like I really had to be true to myself and you know what? That’s part of the process.

It’s so part of the process. Tucking your tail and saying, ”oh I screwed up, this doesn’t work, I’m going back”. For me it was going to go back to playing Legos on the floor. But for a lot of people it’s like going back to their nine-to-five.

You can’t do it. You have to try again. It’s part of the process and so I went back and I started this. It was perfect and I love it, I love it.

It’s so part of the process.

Matthew Loomis: I think they call it, ”failing forward” now.

Jessica Sweet: It is!!!

Yeah!!!

What Role Does Your Blog Have in Your Coaching Business?

Matthew Loomis: Right.

So your site has a blog and I’m curious.

What role your blog plays with your business?

Jessica Sweet: Yeah.

So I think it’s a great place for people to get to know me.

It’s my personality online. It’s my way for people to interact with me online. It’s my way for people to find me online. So it’s my interaction to the rest of the world.

That’s really what it is, it’s a way for me to express my views. It’s about how I feel and how I think about things. For me to teach people about career change and personal development, topics and stuff.

So it’s really me online, is what it is.

Matthew Loomis: Mmm mm.

Jessica Sweet: That’s how I feel about my blog.

The other thing is that’s my blog and what serves as an arm off my blog is guest posting.  So it’s blogging for other people’s blogs. I get to do that and it’s sort of me going on a trip and visiting other people.

So that’s awesome too.

How Often Do You Blog?

Matthew Loomis: Yeah.

That sounds good.

How often do you blog?

Jessica Sweet: Well.

It depends. Hahaha… I really try to blog once a week.

In the summer it’s off a little bit, I can’t lie. But it’s really once a week. When you have readers, they kind of depend on it, they look for it in their inbox. They look to see, you know, ”oh, there’s nothing to read”!

I hope they’re disappointed.

I hope they enjoy reading my stuff. Some of the feedback that I get say’s that they do. But there’s definitely a gap there when they don’t see it.

So that consistency is really important to readers.

How Transparent are You on Your Blog?

Matthew Loomis: Yeah.

Absolutely.

Consistency is very important.

So how transparent are you, on your blog?

Jessica Sweet: That’s a great question.

I’m fairly transparent actually. Hahaha…

Matthew Loomis: That’s what I figured you said.

It was to introduce yourself.

Jessica Sweet: Yeah.

Yeah.

It’s a good question.

It’s one I have struggled with and I’ve gotten bolder over the years.

Before I put something on my blog, I always ask myself why I’m doing it. You know, something that’s sensitive potentially. I ask myself why I’m doing it and I ask myself if it’s going to connect with my readers or if it’s going to alienate them.

Matthew Loomis: Yeah.

Hahaha…

Jessica Sweet: You know.

There’s a difference between putting stuff out there and I think it’s the same on your blog and in real life.

You wouldn’t go out there in real-life and dump on them all your stuff. And you wouldn’t do that on your blog either. But you can share details and even more intimate details.

Even in a business if you do it appropriately.

That’s how I think about it. I’m talking about a real person in my mind when I blog and would I share this with a real person at this time. If the answer is yes, then I pretty much share it if I can get myself over that hurdle.

It’s like, if I would share it with somebody else.

So Your Blog Helps People Get to Know You Better?

Matthew Loomis: Okay.

So it may not necessarily have a business tie-in.

But if it somehow has a purpose that you think helps people get to know you better.

That’s your goal?

Jessica Sweet: Yeah.

And for me, getting to know me better is a business tie-in.

When they are working with me that’s a huge part of what they’re buying, you know. Obviously what they’re buying is really the end result. But they’re not buying that result without buying into the fact that they are working with me in particular versus somebody else.

Matthew Loomis: Yeah.

Jessica Sweet: They don’t know me and know who I am.

And think,  ”okay this person is somebody that I have to work with for a while”. It’s not going to fly, they definitely have to know me on some level.

Have You Had Good Feed-Back From Sharing Your Personal Stories?

Matthew Loomis: So it sounds like you have had some good results.

By sharing personal stories?

Jessica Sweet: Yeah.

I think so.

So one story in particular that I think my readers have connected with. Is the fact that my dad really hated his job growing up.

We would talk about what that was like for him and what that was like for me the day that he quit. So a lot of readers like… I’ve basically got a lot of e-mails that are like, ”oh I read that story and I totally feel like him”. ” I totally understand. So…

Matthew Loomis: Yeah.

Jessica Sweet: If I were more like conservative.

Or reserved on my blog.

Or if I never talked about me or who I was or growing-up or anything. I wouldn’t of shared that story. I think that really makes sense. So to talk about it helps.

Matthew Loomis: Yeah.

I think it’s an effective way to go for any blogger really.

Jessica Sweet: Mmm mm.

Where Do Your Ideas For Posts and Content Come From?

Matthew Loomis: So Jessica.

It sounds like you create your content yourself.

How do you get ideas for posts and plan out your contents schedule?

Jessica Sweet: Oh.

So there’s two parts to that question. Hahaha…

The idea part I don’t really struggle with I’m definitely an ideas person and I get ideas from everywhere. I write them down and I capture them.

The second part to that question, which is about scheduling. Is much harder for me. So the solution to that problem is my wonderful virtual assistant. Hahaha…. I don’t do a very good job at that.

So I’ve been able to outsource that.

So I think before I got to that it was really a matter of trying to capture those ideas and put them somewhere all in one place and then figure out what is the best way to connect with my readers right now.

I think there are better ways to do it like an editorial calendar, I have done it much more scientific ways. Better ways to figure out what you want to be blogging about right now and all of those things.

I would be lying if I said, that I’m that advanced.

Really what I do is say. ”what do I feel like talking about right now”. What is appropriate and then I talk about that, so yeah.

You’re Very Spontaneous and You’re Flexible?

Matthew Loomis: Okay.

You’re pretty spontaneous.

Jessica Sweet: I am.

I am spontaneous.

Sometimes it’s about trends. Sometimes it’s about conversations I’ve had with a client recently, so…

Matthew Loomis: You’re flexible.

Jessica Sweet: I am.

Yeah. I try to be. I do.

Do You Do Any Video or Audio?

Matthew Loomis: Yeah.

So you might have some idea on the back burner.

But if something pops up you’re okay with putting those things aside and just going with it and blogging on it .

Do you do any video or audio or just write?

Jessica Sweet: I really right now.

Just write.

I just haven’t gotten to those other things yet.

They serve all on my list of things to get to. But I think one of the things that happens as a small business owner is that you can’t do everything.

There are a lot of details and one of the things, that for me and I believe is true for probably everybody. Is that you have to focus. That’s really been my keyword is focus.

What are you trying to do and how are you going to make that happen. There are a lot of things out there that can distract you. A lot of things to get excited about. A lot of things to focus on that are fancy or cool or whatever.

Can Social Media be a Distraction?

Matthew Loomis: Cough. Cough.

Social media.

Cough. Cough.

Jessica Sweet: Yeah.

Yeah. Social media exactly and yeah I could be doing some awesome stuff. Like video or audio and there’s no doubt it would probably drive traffic and it would be fun… But I don’t mentally have the bandwidth to do all that stuff.

I can’t do everything.

I have to focus on my core competency which is writing and just do it as consistently as I can. And do the other things that I have to do consistently as I can and make all that other stuff happen.

The goal I think is to outsource stuff and eventually scale-up. You know that’s been my model.

Until I get there I can’t add in other pieces, because then what happens for me is, I get scattered and I can’t get stuff done. I think that is true for anybody and I see that with my clients too. If they try to do too much too soon, it doesn’t work.

So I think that is definitely true when you are starting a business.

Matthew Loomis: Yeah.

That’s a great, great answer.

Good stuff. Thanks for being transparent there.

Jessica Sweet: Sure.

What Sorts of Skills Does One Need  to Get a ”Business From Home” Off the Ground?

Matthew Loomis: I want to go back to entrepreneurs.

Freelancers and people who want to be self-employed.

Now as a career coach you help people find the career of their dreams. You have a lot of insight’s about plugging the right skill-set with the right line of work.

So if someone listening feels stuck in a job. Let’s say, right now and they want to be their own boss at their own schedule. Run an online business and be successful at doing that.

What sorts of traits do folks need to possess make this work?

Jessica Sweet: Good question.

The ability to focus and the ability to want to do it. That’s really important!

So I run into clients, that want all the fun stuff about it. You know they don’t want to work for somebody’else and they want it all to kind of come easy.

Matthew Loomis: Right.

Jessica Sweet: I get it.

But it doesn’t happen that way. I think that being able to understand that you do have to work for it, is one trait.

And the ability to work for it.

How Do You Measure a Persons Passion for Their Work?

Matthew Loomis: How do you measure desire.

When you’re coaching someone?

Jessica Sweet: That’s a good question too!

There’s not a formal scale obviously.

I thinks it’s about, when I am coaching someone I get to observe their behavior. So I get to watch how they dig in to different tasks. For example I’m working with a clients now. This particular client is not doing a home based business. She is starting a franchise and her desire is very high.

So she’s looking at two different franchise opportunities.

She’s narrowed it down, she’s done so much research. She’s flying to the headquarters of each of these to talk to the people at the top, I guess, to find out more about them, She’s just done so much stuff, to figure out which one is going to be right for her.

So in a home business, like kind of looking at how much work we want to put in.

Then I’ve had other clients, you know when we are doing the work. I’ll give them homework or like action items and they’re like, ”mmm, I don’t know”. You know they don’t want to do that.

They don”t want to take it on.

Matthew Loomis: Maybe it’s, because you remind them of a boss?

Hahaha…

Jessica Sweet: Well.

That’s a very good point.

But actually, I talk a lot about this on my blog. I try very hard not to. When I give home work (this is sort of on the side so I won’t spend long on it)

Matthew Loomis: Sure.

Jessica Sweet: I talk about accountability.

Holding people accountable. I make a big deal about this so I have to talk about it.

When I hold people accountable, it really is about helping you, to do what you want. It’s not my job. It’s not my responsibility.

It’s about me assisting YOU, in your goals.

So I’m not somebody that’s going to have the whip, and like take that out and… It’s not about me.

Matthew Loomis: I’m being a little facetious 🙂

Jessica Sweet: I totally know, you were.

But I have to grab onto it. There are a lot of people that use that term and it drives me nuts when they say, ”I need somebody to hold me accountable”.

Coaches do it too. ” I’m going to hold you accountable”!

And I think about it, like that… Drill sergeant. I hate it.

You have to be self-motivated for it to work. Otherwise the second we stop working together, guess what happens?

Nothing! Nothing!

Matthew Loomis: You’re on your own.

Jessica Sweet: Yes.

You are!

So my goal is, to help you find goals, that you care about to do something about. I will help you.

But I can’t do it for you and I can’t yell at you enough to make you do it.

So sorry for my tyranny. Hahaha…

Matthew Loomis: No

No. It’s great!

So aside from desire and it sounds like maybe organization.

Any other traits?

Jessica Sweet: Yeah.

Organization is good.

But I’ll tell you, I’m not the most organized person in the world. Organization is great if you have it. It’s awesome. But I think what is better, is to have the ability to see what your strengths are towards those.

So for me I know I ‘m an ideas person. Organization is not my strength. So I have a virtual assistant. If you are an ideas person, you can get a virtual assistant.

If you’re not an ideas person and you’re organizational person, then go to a business that’s more structured and you don’t have to be as creative. Or maybe get into a mastermind. Where you can work with people that will help you generate ideas.

You can do the organizational stuff on your own.

So I think the ability to work to your strengths, is another thing that I would say, is probably better than your ability to be organized.

You Help People Find Their Niche in Life, Right?

Matthew Loomis: But some people don’t know their strengths.

So you help them discover those, right?

Jessica Sweet: Yeah.

Absolutely!

You can take a strengths assessment online so you can find your strengths.

But, I help people find their strengths. Even beyond that and articulate them. So yeah.

What are Your Thoughts on Robotics Technology Taking Over the Workforce?

Matthew Loomis: So I’m just curious.

This is a little bit off in a new direction.

I just want to take a moment to talk about, what you think about robotics technologies, you know there seems to be jobs already disappearing, because of robotics technologies.

I’m just curious. How do you think this is going to affect the workforce in the future?

Jessica Sweet: Yeah.

I think this is actually a really huge topic.

Matthew Loomis: Yeah.

We could do a whole show on this.

Jessica Sweet: Yeah.

Really. You could do a whole blog or business on this.

Matthew Loomis: Yeah. Right.

Jessica Sweet: This is a huge thing.

So I think a couple of pieces that we already talked about touch on this.

I think one, creativity is going to be really highly prized in the future. I think your ability, not to know all the answers but to get all the answers is going to be important. I’ll tell you why. In one fraction of a second, Google can tell you anything related to career change, than I ever could.

It knows everything, right.

But what it doesn’t know, is anything about how to work with a person.

And how to understand you and how to make you feel better when you’re sad.

A robot can’t do that!

Matthew Loomis: Right.

Jessica Sweet: A person can.

So I think that in the future, it’s really not going to be about your ability to know things.

Even to know how to do complex things. It’s your ability to figure out, ”how do I have a solution to”? Or ” how do I do something very human”? Or ”how am I more creative”?

I think there’s going to be different types of challenges. That only humans can solve and robots can’t. 

That we need to just keep focusing on.

Do You Think the ”Human Touch” Will Still be valued in the Future?

Matthew Loomis: Yeah.

Do you think the ”human touch” or being able to apply the emotional aspect of things.

You know, like for example, I guess there are robots now that is writing copy. Or sales copy or market copy, but that algorithm or that software, or whatever it is, doesn’t have the emotions of humans.

So how can it tap into writing a captivating headline, if it doesn’t have the emotional aspect?

Do you think that will be valued in the future, like the whole thing with emotions?

Jessica Sweet: Yeah.

I think so.

I really don’t know, I can’t say anything about the sales copy or the marketing copy and how good the product of that actually is.

Yeah, I think anything related to the human touch like humanness is not being a robot. I think anything related to being a human, like emotional intelligence is probably going to be pretty important. In a technological world.

Matthew Loomis: Yeah.

Jessica Sweet: You can’t out robot a robot.

No matter, how hard you try.

Why Do Some Middle Aged People Get Stuck in one Job?

Matthew Loomis: Right.

Yeah. I think so too.

I’m sure we could look into that and find out all kinds of cool things about that.

So let’s say, Mr. James who is fifty-two, has lost his job… thanks to a robot and he’s wanting to make a career change. You help people in their thirties and forties and even sixties, to change their careers.

What are some of the most common reasons middle-aged people stay stuck in a job?

Jessica Sweet: Well.

I think the big, big reason is fear.

I think that’s what’s going on when we talk about the mindset stuff. I think that’s the biggest reason.

Matthew Loomis: Yeah.

That’s the real reason why some people don’t even start blogging.

Jessica Sweet: Yep.

It’s fear.

Matthew Loomis: Yeah.

Jessica Sweet: I think that’s the biggest fear.

The second reason is, finances.

But I’ll tell you an interesting story. One of my recent clients is actually in finance. I talked to him about… ”Do you know if your your family finances can actually support this move”?

He was kind of afraid of making the move. He didn’t know if he could afford to. He was like, ”I don’t know”? So my homework for him was, ”do you think you could go look at your budget”?  ”See what do you actually need to live comfortably”? He was like, ”alright I’m going to go do that”!

So the next week when we met, it was like, ”you know it’s alright, we can do this”.  So even like the finances they were okay for him. It was the fear about the finances that were holding him back.

Now that was just his case. But in some cases it really is the finances, like it’s just, the money’s not there. In which case you have to get more creative. I think fear does hold a lot of people back and the fear of not having money, holds a lot of people back.

You have to see it as, ”well what’s the real situation here and what can I do about it”?

Matthew Loomis: Right.

What are some things that middle-agers can do to get unstuck?

Jessica Sweet: Well.

I think the first thing is.

To let the fear loosen enough to think about, ”what can I do”?  ”What can I do here”?

Matthew Loomis: Let the fear loosen?

Jessica Sweet: Yeah.

I mean just let it go!

Like for him it was… This client that I just talked about, like he let it loosen enough. He had such a tight grip on it before. So when he talked about it, he was like” I’m going to let go of that grip, enough to look at my budget” and then he was actually okay.

So I think for other people. Middle-agers who need to change. The very first step is; Let go of your fear enough to ask yourself the question, ”what do I need to do”?

You know sometimes it’s looking at your budget. Sometimes it could be, talking to your spouse. Sometimes it could be, hiring a coach. It could be looking at other job options that are open to you. Talking to your network, there might be multiple steps there.

There might be any number of things that you could do.

I think what prevents you from thinking creatively about what the next thing to do is; The fear that’s paralyzed you, from thinking, ”what can I do”?

Just Being Knowledgeable About Something in Your Situation, Can Help You Loosen the Fear of the Unknown?

Matthew Loomis: Right.

Knowledge can be really liberating.

And it sounds from your example, that a little bit of knowledge helped him loosen that fear as you describe it. Just taking a look at some of the details which you helped him to see.

That’s pretty cool.

Jessica Sweet: Yeah.

Yeah.

Matthew Loomis: Great!

So any other, besides fear.

Are there any other reasons why people get stuck?

Jessica Sweet: Yeah.

Sometimes there really are financial reasons that people get stuck. Sometimes there are real employment reasons. Like they are contracted in a situation or they’re  worried about, they don’t want to quit this job, unless we have another job in hand.

I have a client that is stuck in a terrible job right now.

She was previously unemployed for over a year. She really doesn’t want to quit this job until she knows what she wants to do and has another job offer. So she’s sticking it out until she has that.

She feels really stuck, because she doesn’t want to be unemployed.

There’s that. There’s a lot of different reasons, but I think, those are some of the big ones.

Have You Ever Recommended Someone Quit Their Job for Any Reason?

Matthew Loomis: Has there ever been a case, or a reason, for you as a coach.

Where you would recommend somebody quit a job even though, they don’t have a new job or a career lined-up?

Jessica Sweet: Well.

As a coach I really don’t make recommendations.

Matthew Loomis: Oh.

Okay.

Jessica Sweet: What I do.

I help people figure out what they want to do.

So there have definitely been some of my clients that have done that. For sure. I have been relieved that they have absolutely. I would never say to somebody you need to quit. God forbid they did that and then, you know and thought that was the worst idea ever the next day.

Matthew Loomis: Right.

Jessica Sweet: So.

Yeah. So what I do.

Basically walk them through like basically the question of, ”what do you think you need to do here”? Until I get their answer or their decision of what they want to do. Then I support them in doing that.

How Self-Employment Has Changed Jessica Sweet’s Life!

Matthew Loomis: Great.

Well. I want to wrap up with a couple of questions. One of them is what I ask all my guests.

This has been GREAT!

Jessica, first of all to someone that has been running the Wishing Well business, now for several years. For someone that has been working for yourself.

How has self-employment changed your life?

Jessica Sweet: It’s been amazing!

So first I didn’t have to go back to work. That was awesome!

Hahaha…

Matthew Loomis: Yeah.

Hahaha…

Jessica Sweet: You know.

I have two kids now.

I really enjoy being able to stay at home with them. Not having to stress about finding part-time work or contract work or juggle all that craziness. Just work from home on my own schedule doing my own thing.

That’s been so amazing!

You know,watching them grow up and it’s just been incredible. Then on top of that the work that I do. I absolutely love. Somebody asked me the other day, ”is this work going to be free-time or is it going to be work-time”? I’m like, ”what’s the difference”? Hahaha…

So I really love it!

Matthew Loomis: That’s great!

Jessica Sweet: So it’s totally changed my life!

It’s incredible.

How Blogging Has Changed Jessica Sweet’s life!

Matthew Loomis: Okay.

And how has blogging changed your life?

Jessica Sweet: Blogging is where it all started.

I mean, I wouldn’t have built this business without my blog.

Because my blog, like I said is sort of like my radio to the world. It’s like, how I get my voice out there.

So my blog is the voice of my business.

How To Connect with Jessica Sweet Online.

Matthew Loomis: Jessica.

Where can people connect with you online?

Jessica Sweet: So.

My website is: Wishing Well Coach dot com

(Just like it sounds, one thing – Wishing Well Coach dot com)

Matthew Loomis: Fantastic!

And I guess there’s some links as well to your social media profiles?

Jessica Sweet: Yeah.

They can find it all there.

There’s a lot of resources on there. They can connect with me right on there.

Matthew Loomis: Yeah.

What’s that one free eBook that you offer?

Jessica Sweet: So.

Yeah.

There’s an Ultimate Guide to Career Change at 40 and Beyond.

There’s also The Reverse Resume, which is a guide to creating, it’s 7 questions to creating your dream job. It’s something that was actually featured in Business Insider.

So they can download that there as well.

Matthew Loomis: Great.

Well Jessica, thanks for being on the show today!

It’s been really interesting.

Jessica Sweet: Thank you so much.

 

I found some great free resources on how to change careers after 40!

Show Notes

Wishing Well Coach

http://wishingwellcoach.com/guide-career-change-40/

 

http://wishingwellcoach.com/the-reverse-resume-2/

 

The Gallup Strength Center

 

Thanks for tuning in to this episode of  The Blog Chronicles.

If you enjoy the show please subscribe on YouTube or iTunes and leave a rating or review to help other bloggers find us.If you want to chat with me on Twitter, look up me up: @mattloomis

Author Bio:

Matthew Kaboomis Loomis is the owner of Build Your Own Blog. Connect with him on Google+ and Twitter

12 comments

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  1. David Boozer says:    •   3 years

    Great interview! I love freelancing and doing “my own thing”, it has truly changed my life… Awesome interview Jessica!

    1. Matthew Loomis says:    •   3 years Author

      You da man, Mr. Boozer! Glad you liked this one and your interview is coming out next!

      Someone who heard it already said its one of the best. 🙂

      Matthew

    2. Jessica Sweet says:    •   3 years

      Thank you David! I really appreciate it, and as you heard, doing my own thing has really changed my life too.

  2. John Martin says:    •   3 years

    Great subject and well done post, Matthew! Really got me thinking. I so agree with what Jessica said about the tools! We have more tools now than ever before online. And so many of them are free. I’ve gotten quite a bit of freelance work from networking on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, even Instagram.

    I really appreciate what Jessica said about focus. She writes more and uses social less. When I use social media, I focus on only one, maybe two channels for weeks. Simpler means more results where you focus.

    There’s so much you can do if you have an audience/network. I remember about a year ago reading a famous blog editor’s comment that he usually only accepted guest posts from people who have a social presence, maybe 400 or more Twitter followers. So I got started boosting my Twitter audience.

    I bought a Udemy course on Twitter. I started daily following new people in my industry. I followed back most of the people who followed me. And I unfollowed everyone who didn’t follow me back after a week. And I interacted with people who tweeted/retweeted me. It only took me a week (half hour per day) to get the 400 followers. So I kept on going. I still do this a few minutes a day.

    I’ve gotten so much of my freelance work just because of doing this!

    Jessica also spoke about fear holding people back. So true! The only job security these days is the confidence we have in ourselves. Confidence to figure out whatever life throws at us. Without confidence, a person will always find a way to lose. The opposite is true too. The one with the most confidence always wins.

    I try to work on my confidence each day: exercising, listening to motivating books/podcasts and working to get done what I said I would do. I use routines/habits and small doable goals to push me through doing the things I don’t want to do. I find that action sparks motivation, instead of waiting for motivation to spark action. And progress, even a little, can build confidence like crazy.

    Matthew, thank you so much for all that you and Jessica are doing here to help people!
    -John

    1. Matthew Loomis says:    •   3 years Author

      Hi John,

      You nailed it–confidence is the key to so much in life.

      Action does boost confidence more than anything. That’s why I encourage newbies to just get started. Set some small goals like “I will publish three new blog posts by ______” Then do it. Action is the road to confidence.

      Great conversation, John. 🙂

      Matthew

    2. Jessica Sweet says:    •   3 years

      Thank you John! I really love your description of how you use action to harness confidence and motivation! It can be so hard for people to know what to do, but the answer so many times is just to “do.” Keep going!!

  3. Prudent says:    •   3 years

    A great post! lovely interview! when it balls down to our society, self employment is the key to break the chains of (” living from pay-check to pay-check”) slavery. And thank you Matt once again for the tips on how to build your own blog,it really helped me.

    1. Matthew Loomis says:    •   3 years Author

      Love your name, Prudent! Glad to be of service to you.

    2. Jessica Sweet says:    •   3 years

      Prudent, Thanks for posting your comment! Glad this interview was helpful!

  4. Ryan Biddulph says:    •   3 years

    Hi Jessica and Matthew,

    I am all about following my fun, or, building my career around having fun.

    Your collective point about story telling is huge. At first, I did not have fun telling my story. The REST of the story, meaning failures and wins, depression, duds and victories, flops and wild successes. But now I genuinely enjoy sharing how the same guy who circles the globe through blogging fears not being heard sometimes, or how this allegedly big dawg blogger (others say, not I, not I 😉 fell flat on his face for years, attracting 3 visits daily to his blog for weeks some 8 years ago.

    People love how real, living human beings share their wins and losses because then we know we’re pretty much like them, and that we can still be awesome despite having flaws. And in time, you can even have fun being vulnerable and open, when in the past it felt like a trip to get a root canal.

    Keep on rocking guys 😉

    Ryan

    1. Matthew Loomis says:    •   3 years Author

      Ryan,

      That’s one thing I like about you–you remind us to have fun!

      Personal stories always get a great response on this blog. The how-to’s? Not guaranteed.

      We live in such a “public relations” dominant society that it is tough for all of us to be real publicly. We want to put a positive spin on everything, yet our challenges and negative experiences are so compelling and powerful.

      Again, Ryan reminds us that even self disclosure can be fun. 🙂 I’d say like creating content, the more we do it the easier it gets. I’ll bet that applies to sharing personal stories as well.

      Look forward to more of your stories, man.

      Keep on rocking in the free world, Ryan 🙂

      Matthew

    2. Jessica Sweet says:    •   3 years

      Hey Ryan! I know you and your blog!! 🙂 Thanks for listening in and posting such a real comment! I agree, following a real person and a story you can relate to can give someone the same reaction I just had when I read your comment – like an old friend – and then doing business is just the next logical step. 🙂