Summary: iRelaunch is all about getting professionals back to work after a career break - most often childcare, but also eldercare, pursuing a personal interest, a personal health issue, extended travel, or other reasons. We also think about how other non-traditional professionals – expats repatriating, retirees “unretiring, military spouses and veterans, fit into the relauncher demographic. iRelaunch works with employers to create, implement and expand career re-entry programs of all kinds, and we produce the largest and longest-running dedicated career re-entry event in the country - the iRelaunch Return to Work Conference. Our fast-growing national community is made up of thousands of relaunchers in all stages of returning to work. iRelaunch Chair and Co-founder Carol Fishman Cohen's TED talk “How to get back to work after a career break” has viewed more than 2.5 million times and translated into 29 languages. Join us for our award-winning podcast featuring advice, strategies and success stories on returning to work after a career break.
Lisa Fain is the CEO at the Center for Mentoring Excellence. She speaks with Carol all about mentoring and the role mentoring and being mentored can have in a relaunch, and once back to work. They discuss the “growth mindset” and the idea of “becoming” vs the “fixed mindset," why you don’t have to “have all the answers” to be an effective mentor, and how the best mentoring relationships are enabling instead of dependent. Fun fact: Lisa Fain’s mother, Lois Zachary, the founder of the Center for Mentoring Excellence is a relauncher! When Lisa was in middle school, her mother went back to school for a PhD and founded the Center subsequently. Center for Mentoring Excellence
Kendell Brown, Founder of Ascension Careers, first transitioned her career from finance to brand management after she got her MBA. Later, after her career break, she transitioned her career again when she took a role in career services at a major university. Finally, she used all of her accumulated skills to develop a career and executive coaching business alongside her university work, and then on her own. Listen as Kendell tells us how she convinced the university that she would be an excellent candidate for a role for which she had no prior experience. As the resume expert for the iRelaunch coaching team, she explains why she recommends being “accurate but not proportionate” when recounting work history on a resume. At the close of the conversation and as we witness the rise of the pivotal Black Lives Matter movement, Kendell comments on her relaunch experience as a Black woman and mother.
Dorothy DeWitt, Director of the Division of Market Oversight at the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission, grew up on a Texas farm and later graduated from University of Texas at Austin and Harvard Law School. She successfully relaunched her career in 2014 in a much more junior role than the one she left before her career break, and after a job search that was prolonged by the 2008 recession. Dorothy’s career soared after her relaunch. She candidly discusses what led to her current senior role and dispenses excellent advice for all relaunchers along the way.
Kara Goldin, Founder and CEO of Hint, talks to Carol about how she left a powerful career to be home with her kids, and got the idea for Hint when looking for a healthy, good-tasting alternative to diet drinks. They discuss Kara’s early career at Time magazine, CNN and AOL, being an entrepreneur within a company versus on your own, risk profiles and naysayers. Kara has been named to Forbes “40 Women to Watch Over 40” and Fortune’s “Most Powerful Women Entrepreneurs.” Kara’s book Undaunted will be released in October 2020. Read more about Kara here: 7 Questions with Kara Goldin
EP 140: Best Advice for Relaunchers Special Memorial Day Compilation Episode by iRelaunch
Cynthia Stewart, Director of System Engineering at Science and Engineering Services, LLC, talks with Carol about her engineering start at NASA, her 17-year career break raising her four children, and how her attendance at a job fair led her back into the engineering world with no up-skilling. Cynthia shares how a temporary job as the Children’s Director at her church gave her the communications skills to re-enter the workforce. She discusses how she relaunched as a Systems Engineer, a different type of engineering than what she did before her career break, and how it was the perfect fit for her when she relaunched. More on Cynthia’s career path and relaunch can be found in this article written last year.
Ginny Brzezinski is a former Capitol Hill press secretary, writer, speaker, iRelaunch Advisory Board member and co-author, with her sister-in-law, Morning Joe co-host Mika Brzezinski, of the recently released Comeback Careers. Ginny talks with Carol about her own career break, relaunching in real estate which gave her some flexibility while raising her children, and now co-authoring Comeback Careers. Ginny explains the value of relaunching later in life and how the resilience and maturity you bring to the table makes you “stronger, wiser, better.”
Carol speaks with Liz O’Donnell, Founder of Working Daughter, a community of women (and men) balancing their careers and caregiving of an elderly parent or loved one. Liz has firsthand experience holding down a busy career, raising a family and then taking on a caregiving role out of the blue with both of her parents. Liz and Carol discuss the importance of “showing up” at work now, in order to gain trust and equity with your co-workers for the future when you may need some flexibility; the tough conversations that every family should have before there is a health crisis; and if you are on career break and then your circumstances change, how to position your caregiving time to your advantage.
In this episode, Carol speaks with Mary Beth Barrett-Newman, Founder and President of 2nd Career Consulting, a moderator on the iRelaunch Return to Work Forum private Facebook group, frequent iRelaunch Return to Work Conference speaker, and a member of the iRelaunch coaching team, about the challenges of returning to work during COVID-19. Mary Beth gives advice on using this time to update your resume and LinkedIn profile, take a new headshot and practice video interviewing with a friend, former colleague or the alumni career services office of your alma mater. She also discusses the importance of setting realistic goals during this time, putting yourself on a schedule, and sharing that weekly schedule with your family. Find out what Mary Beth means by making yourself "camera-ready” and hear her comments on staying resilient during this uncertain and unprecedented time.
Wendy Durica relaunched as a senior software developer at global advertising agency Kantar. Wendy has a Bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering and later, while she was relaunching, got her Master’s degree in Computer Science at night. After an extended career break, Wendy took a lower level technical support role at a bank and moved up over an eight year period to the senior role she has now. A self-described “shy person,” Wendy discusses how her confidence grew, how she was able to overcome her shyness as she advanced professionally, and the important role getting her Master’s Degree
In this episode we discuss relaunching or transitioning to a career in the trades with one of the leaders in the field, Judaline Cassidy. Judaline Cassidy is a feminist plumber, Tradeswomen activist, and public speaker. She was one of the very first women accepted into the Plumbers Local Union 371 Staten Island, and the first woman elected on the Examining Board of Plumbers Local Union 1 New York City. Prior to her relaunch, which began with her acceptance into the Union's five-year apprenticeship program, Judaline worked as a nanny and housekeeper. She's been a proud member of Plumbers Local Union 1 New York City, for the past twenty years. From her bio: "Being a qualified Plumber has drastically changed her life, and the lifestyle of her family. Financially, it has afforded her and her family upward mobility in society. She cares deeply for her fellow sisters in the trades and serves as a mentor and big sister to anyone who needs her stewardship." Judaline was a speaker at the 2017 Makers Conference and is featured on their website, and is also the founder of Tools and Tiaras, a non-profit introducing girls to the trades. For more information on Tools and Tiaras and Judaline’s upcoming podcast: https://www.toolsandtiaras.org/
Carol is honored to welcome Dr. Lisa Damour as our guest in part 3 of our series on the COVID-19 pandemic. Lisa Damour, Ph.D. is a psychologist, author, teacher, speaker, and consultant. Dr. Damour writes the monthly Adolescence column for the New York Times and is a regular contributor at CBS News. She serves as a Senior Advisor to the Schubert Center for Child Studies at Case Western Reserve University and as the Executive Director of Laurel School’s Center for Research on Girls. Dr. Damour is the author of two New York Times best selling books: Untangled: Guiding Teenage Girls Through the Seven Transitions into Adulthood and Under Pressure: Confronting the Epidemic of Stress and Anxiety in Girls. She also maintains a private psychotherapy practice. As we head further into uncertain times, with a growing number of us in our homes with children of all ages, including adult children as they are sent home from closed colleges, shuttered abroad programs and rescinded job offers, we are in completely new territory. And for those of us in the middle of a relauncher job search, things are even more complicated given the economic forecasts we are facing. We turn to Dr. Lisa Damour for her guidance and wisdom. More information about Dr. Damour's work can be found at drlisadamour.com
In part 2 of our series on the COVID-19 pandemic, Carol welcomes back Matthew Temple, Senior Director of Alumni Career & Professional Development at the Kellogg School of Management and an iRelaunch Advisory Board member. Carol and Matthew talk about building and maintaining resilience when job searching in a downturn; how to best use your time while at home; tips on video interviewing and other elements of the remote job search and more.
Carol and our new Managing Director, Jennifer Howland, former executive, manager and engineer at IBM who built the IBM Tech Reentry Program from scratch into a global program, discuss ways relaunchers can stay involved in their relaunch even in these uncertain times. They discuss the importance of relaunch buddies and circles, why you should and how to create a bio, remote opportunities for updating skills and experiences, and maintaining your mental health at this vulnerable time for so many. For more detailed advice on this topic, read our blog post.
Organizational psychologist, Professor of Management Practice, Emeritus, at the Wharton School, co-author of the new book, Parents Who Lead, and author of the best seller Total Leadership Stewart D. Friedman talks about the importance of bringing your whole self to both your work environment and home life. Professor Friedman discusses leadership at home when engaging with your children to find out what they need, getting them to open up, and what is important to them about your job, especially in the context of relaunching in which the parents' working status is changing. Click on ParentsWhoLead.net for more information about the new release Parents Who Lead.