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18 | The Prison of Building a Business or Brand

Entrepreneurship and carefully sculpted personal brands are hot right now. Jobs suck more and more, and nobody wants to be an employee. So many people are on a quest to be the next great mogul. But, as Kay learned after her foray into consulting full time, just as a shitty job can feel like a prison, so can building a business or personal brand.

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Episode 16 – Redefining Success after Failure

Life doesn’t go according to plan. Careers don’t launch. Dream jobs turn into your own little version of hell. Visions of marital bliss slip away with each year that someone doesn’t put a ring on it. We’ve all had our share of life “fails”. Maybe it’s time to redefine success.

Kay and special guest Bianca J. Gay have a candid conversation about what happens when shit doesn’t go according to plan, and how to redefine success based on what you want for your life.

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Listen to past episodes here.

How I Learned to Negotiate Salary

It wasn’t until my late-20s that I started to get serious about asking for more money than I was offered. At the height of the Great Recession, I quit my job and moved back to my hometown. I applied for any job I could find, and surprisingly, I landed a gig a month later. It was a big step down, but I was grateful to secure something as quickly as I did. I didn’t bother to negotiate my salary. (more…)

Some Perils of Working in White Work Cultures

For Black people, navigating professional spaces where White folks dominate the work culture is like navigating obstacle courses where the price of failure can be your career and livelihood. Of the many roadblocks to success — like enduring every possible racial micro-aggression, not sharing cultural references, and generally proving your competence and value to people who doubt it at the onset — the blurring of professional and personal lines definitely ranks among the shittiest.

In these white-dominated cultures — likely every place you’ve had a professional job — there’s an expectation that you’ll morph into some boundary-less person and allow your personal business to become fodder for a gossip mill under the guise of “bonding” and “relating”. The jig, though, is that they’re not going to tell you they expect this. Saying what they mean and meaning what they say is not a thing they have to do. Why say what you mean when you can just smile and do under-handed shit behind the scenes to compel people to do what you want them to do anyway. [As an aside, in my experience, when Miss Anns dominate the culture these phenomena are far more pronounced and even more unbearable.] (more…)

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