Episode 61: How to lead yourself and be the change – with Jamie Crosier of Organize Like a Pro

Pastor, business owner, and speaker Jamie Crosier explains the power of leading yourself and how it can improve your current job.

Today’s guest

Jamie Crozier of Organize Like a Pro

Website: Organize Like a Pro

Facebook: Organize Like a Pro

Are you ready to take control of your life, happiness, and career by leading yourself?  What you do matters and the key is to identify and play to your strengths and weaknesses.

Jamie was born a city girl, but her heart lives in the small-town USA.  She’s married to a brilliant engineer and together they have two children and a dog.  Their favorite thing to do as a family is spending time on the lake.  In addition to hosting the Organize Like a Pro podcast, Jamie is a speaker, small business owner and full-time pastor. 

Jamie shares how she felt lost and depended on others for her happiness until she discovered that only she was responsible for changing her situation. Listen in to learn how properly to assess your current job to identify your strengths, weaknesses, and whether it’s the right place for you.

What you’ll learn in this episode

  • [1:26] Jamie explains what she does as a wife, business-woman, full-time pastor, and the hobbies she enjoys.
  • [2:30] How the idea of starting a podcast about organizing yourself came from feedback from others.
  • [4:36] How to lead yourself to change your situation to something better.
  • [6:21] Learning how to lead yourself well in your job to find out if it’s your perfect fit or not.
  • [9:56] How to handle yourself when you’ve just started your job, and how it can take 3-6 months to adjust.
  • [13:10] Understanding that tension and conflict at work isn’t necessarily a bad thing.
  • [15:46] How to think positively about others and be genuine as you let them know.
  • [20:14] How to identify your strengths, prevent them from being a weakness, and drive them to work for you.
  • [28:24] The importance of actively seeking a role that supports your strengths in your organization.
  • [35:33] Jamie explains the effect on her of realising that what she did mattered, and how she now helps others realise that too.
  • [39:57] Jamie shares some of her recommended resources to help you lead yourself.

Resources mentioned in this episode

Please note that some of these are affiliate links and we may get a small commission in the event that you make a purchase.  This helps us to cover our expenses and is at no additional cost to you.

To see the resources recommended by all our guests, visit the Resources page.

Episode 61: How to lead yourself and be the change - with Jamie Crosier of Organize Like a Pro

Jeremy Cline 0:00
You might think that you hate your job, and the only solution is to leave and go somewhere else. But is that necessarily going to be the best solution? Might there be things that you can do within your current job, which will improve things and make it so much better for you? That's what we talk about in this episode. I'm Jeremy Cline, and this is Change Work Life.

Jeremy Cline 0:33
Hello, and welcome to the Change Work Life podcast where we're all about beating the Sunday evening blues and enjoying Mondays again. A few weeks ago, we spoke to Noomi Natan about the subject of leadership, and that's the theme we're going to be continuing this week. But rather than talking about leading others, we're going to be talking about leading yourself. Now that's not a concept I was particularly familiar with, so I'm delighted to welcome Jamie Crosier here to introduce you to the subject. Jamie is a speaker, business owner, full time pastor, and the host of the Organise Like A Pro podcast, which offers tips and tricks to help you get and stay organised in every area of your life. Jamie, welcome to the podcast.

Jamie Crosier 1:12
Well, thank you so much for having me. Good afternoon in your neck of the woods and good morning in mine.

Jeremy Cline 1:17
And goodness knows whatever it is, when everyone's listening to this! Jamie, can you expand a little bit on what it is you do as a pastor and as a business owner?

Jamie Crosier 1:26
Well, I like to utilise every minute of my day. I am a full time pastor. That's a 45-hour work week. Most of the time, it's administration. I also have a background in marketing. So I'm on a marketing team for our church. And a lot of it is business administration, and every so often I get to preach. I love to write, write a few blogs, I love to speak to different groups and just travel around. And then outside of that I'm married, I have two children and a dog. And on the side, I have my own business. It's a small boutique. And it's a lot of fun. And I really just love meeting new people and being able to have conversations with them. And then recently I started the Organised Like A Pro podcast that will air in about a month from today.

Jeremy Cline 2:11
Tell me a bit about the genesis of that, a podcast all about organising your life. I mean, I am a massive sucker for life hacks, be they just habitual or using - I mean, everyone loves a good app or whatever, be it Trello or something like that - so how did you come to decide to start a podcast on that subject?

Jamie Crosier 2:31
Well, it's funny, I don't know about your listeners, or you. But if you ever think 'I'm going to have a plan to do something', and you try it, and it ends up going just totally sideways. I mentioned that I had a small boutique. And I actually thought that I would start a podcast that would help me monetize the boutique and talk more about boutiques and about having side business, side hustles - I don't know if you use that term there, we use it here, side hustles. And so I decided to do a poll, and I polled more than 100 people that knew me and just left an open ended question and said, If I were to have a podcast and talk about something I'm an expert in, what would it be? And I really thought it would be having a side business, because I talk about that all the time. Overwhelmingly, more than 80% of the responses were about organising your life - spreadsheets, and data analysing and leading yourself well, things like that. I was very surprised. And I thought, let's just do it. Let's just change the idea from a side business/ side hustle podcast to how can you organise yourself well, and that's where we are today.

Jeremy Cline 3:35
How did you come to be known amongst these hundred people as the expert on that kind of thing.

Jamie Crosier 3:40
I think that organically happens. When you love something, you don't realise how much you talk about it. You don't realise how your face probably lights up, and how you can almost command a room in a conversation about that topic. And other people will take notice I think more than you do - the people closest to you, they see your blind spots in good and bad ways. They can tell you about the things that you can improve on. But they also tell you about things that you don't realise you are really an expert. And so it's great to poll your friends, your family, the people that know you best for both things, what things can I improve on? And what things would you say I'm an expert in? I was very surprised. And once I talked to my friends about the results of that, and how surprised I was, they were surprised that I was surprised.

Jeremy Cline 4:24
You mentioned when you were describing your podcast, this idea of leading yourself. So let me start with a very open question. It's not going to be a concept which is familiar to a lot of people. What do you mean when you're talking about leading yourself?

Jamie Crosier 4:36
I think it really depends on the situation. However, I think a way to arrive at that is think about whatever the situation might be - your workplace, your family place, your relationship where you spend most of your life. And if there's an area where you feel contentment or stress, the way I think about leading yourself well is ask yourself, what would it look like for this particular situation to actually be beneficial to me. What would it look like if I was in this situation and I was happy, in this relationship or in this work environment, whatever it might be, think about the things that would change to make that situation better. And then instead of putting that on the other person, or the other party or the situation to make that change, make it yourself. Be the change and bring the change. Because when you are able to be the change yourself, you have more control over that. You can't control another person to be a certain way. But you can be that way. And when you bring that into that relationship, into the workplace, into the family, whatever it might be, you are fostering the change yourself, just by leading yourself into the change that you're looking for.

Jeremy Cline 5:42
Let's dig into that in a bit more detail, particularly in the context of jobs and careers. So someone comes to you and says, Jamie, I have been working in this place now for two years, and I am so unhappy, the work is boring, I feel stressed just getting out of bed and then also when I'm trying to get to sleep the night before, my boss is a nightmare. I just don't feel like I'm doing any good whatsoever. I need to change jobs, how do I change jobs. So perhaps you can start to talk us through the process, and maybe whether actually changing jobs is the right thing to do, or the thought process to begin thinking about this.

Jamie Crosier 6:21
I love in your example here, you included the time that someone has been at the particular job. And that's always my first question too - how long have you been there? Because I would say within the first couple years, the other thing to remember is anytime you're in a new group dynamic, I like to call it the norming, storming, conforming and performing phases. When you first are in a workplace environment, you first move there, you know, it's like your honeymoon phase, you're so excited, everything seems so nice. And then comes the storming phase, you really start to realise, oh, these are people with flaws. And I actually don't believe the same things that some of them believe. And these things about them annoy me. And that first season, when you get into that you think what have I done, I am so unhappy, I need to get out of this situation. My first thought process on that is ride it out. Because you usually get to the conforming and the performing phase pretty quickly, once you identify that you're actually just in this learning phase, the storming phase of people that you're working with. And it's in that situation, when you learn how to lead yourself well, that you can quickly move into a performing stage with that group of individuals, or at least identify this isn't actually going to work for me. And I can confidently move on into a different job or a different career knowing that I first led myself well for a period of time.

Jeremy Cline 7:43
And how long - two years? I mean, I think that it takes at least three to six months, once you start a new job to kind of get your feet under the table and feel that you kind of know what you're doing. Two years, I'd kind of hope already to be there. But I'd be interested in your thoughts on that.

Jamie Crosier 8:00
I would actually say two to three years is a really good timeframe of knowing, but let's say you were unhappy for the first two years, and then all of a sudden it dawns on you, oh, why don't I try to lead myself well? Give it some time, because change and creating a culture of change will take time. So it really depends on the moment you decide instead of putting this on other people, I'm going to put this on myself to lead myself well, it's not going to happen in a day, it's not going to happen overnight - especially if there's a culture, you know, a really negative culture in that business environment. Changing culture in a community takes three years. Last time I looked at some research, just in a small community where I live, there's about 4000 people and some research we did when a company that I work with bought another company they did some research on how long does it take to change the workplace environment in that company. And their research came up with it's going to take about three years to really change the entire environment, the work environment in that company. Now that's a bigger scale. So when you're talking about the people that you work with, just know it's not going to happen overnight. But once you really decide and dedicate yourself to, I am going to be the change, I'm going to lead myself well. And I want the people that I work with to have a change as well so that our work environment can be amazing together, even with our differences. Give it some time, give it three, six months, at least before you pull the plug on that.

Jeremy Cline 9:24
I've got lots of questions going through my head. Let me start with a slightly negative question, but why bother? Let's say you've been somewhere and it's been a couple of years. And there's not been that much turnover in your colleagues. There's not been that much change in the business in the period you've been there, you've identified that you're unhappy. Why go through what initially sounds like quite a lot of efforts to make changes from within rather than just think, Okay, this place isn't for me, then I'll just need to make a better decision next time.

Jamie Crosier 9:57
That is a great question. I would very humbly suggest that in any type of situation like that the responsibility for the environment has a little bit to do with the person themselves. So let's just put me for an example, if I'm in a workplace, and I've been there for two years, and I am very unhappy, and I get, why would I bother? Why would I waste any more of my valuable time here when I can go somewhere else or do something else? The question I need to ask myself is, what am I bringing to the table? Probably the chances are that I have something to do with the negativity there myself. So by learning how to lead myself well, the person benefiting the most is me. So even if I decide it's still not a great environment, I have spent three years six months really dedicated to learning how to lead myself well, so that whenever I go to the next place, whether it's my own business, or starting something myself, or retiring, or a different career altogether working for another company, I walk in with the skillset of knowing how to lead myself well, and it's not a situation that I'll need to go through again. So I would say even just from the learning experience, even if you leave, the learning experience of how to lead yourself well is priceless.

Jeremy Cline 11:08
Okay, so to paraphrase, if you're in a position where you're not particularly happy, then you would say, okay, but give it three to six months, we'll come on to what you do in that three to six months, but give it three to six months, because even if you get to the end of that period, and nothing's changed, and you're still unhappy, you'll have learned more about yourself, more about the influence you can have or can't have on people, and just the experience itself will be helpful. And also, you never know it might have worked, it might have helped over that time period. Having said that it takes three years to change a culture, what can you achieve in three to six months?

Jamie Crosier 11:45
I think it depends on how many people you're talking about. So each person comes into the work environment with a different set of values, beliefs, opinions - you have 10 people in the room, and they each have 10 opinions, and that adds up pretty quickly! If you work with for example, where I work right now we have about seven people on staff that I work with on a regular basis. And we also are a part of a larger organisation where there's hundreds of people. So when we're talking about changing the culture of larger organisations where hundreds of people are working together constantly, it's going to take longer. Each one of those people have their own set of opinions, beliefs, values, whereas if your work environment is a small group of people, it probably won't take as long for you to discover is this going to work, is this not going to work if I lead myself well, because you're only talking about a handful of people and their opinions and their values. So that's why I think there's different timeframes, depending on how many people are involved in the situation.

Jeremy Cline 12:47
Let's go to the start of this six month period. Let's call it six months, what's the first thing I should be doing at the start of this period? I've given myself six months. First of all, how do I determine what success looks like. I've given myself six months - maybe that's the first thing I need to do, how do I work out what having done some stuff during the course of that six months, how am I going to know that it's worked?

Jamie Crosier 13:12
I think you'll know, by the way that you feel. If you are still walking into work dreading it every day, feeling the same way that you felt when you started, then you'll know.

Jeremy Cline 13:21
What's the six month plan? What are we going to try and do over the course of the six months and then breaking it down, what's the first thing and maybe the second or third thing that we should do in month one?

Jamie Crosier 13:34
Yeah, actually, the great thing about this, it's really not difficult. It's actually very simple. But it does take that commitment. I'm going to do this same thing every day, I'm going to try my best. If I have a bad day obviously that's okay. But then the next morning, I'm going to do better. I think the first thing is really just having an understanding that conflict and tension is a good thing. I know for myself, just working through that process, I feel tension, or I have a conflict with that person. It does something to me, it makes my blood pressure rise. In a conversation I can feel my heart beating as I'm getting upset or stressed out about it. And I just thought that was an indicator that something is wrong. And I think actually, that's a misnomer. I don't really think that's correct. I think when there's tension in a workplace environment, it really means that you're working with people who care. Think about it, if you went somewhere and you're in a business meeting and there was absolutely zero tension thinking about a decision your company needed to make and no one gives any opposing opinions. No one shares any different ideas. I wouldn't say that's healthy. I would say you have a room full of people who really don't care. They're in there to clock in, clock out and go home and not provide any of their individual talents to the team. When you go into a meeting and there's debate back and forth and there's someone says something that you don't like and you start to feel your heart beating and your blood pressure rising. That is the moment to realise this is not a bad thing. It can turn bad! It can turn unhealthy, you can say things that are not honouring to someone, you can, we all can. But that moment in of itself, when tensions are there, and there's a conflict, think of it as this is actually a good thing. This means that the people I'm sitting around this table with they care, they have passion, they want this to be better, they want the company to be better tomorrow than it is today. So just having the understanding that tension isn't a bad thing, conflict is not a bad thing in of itself will change your mindset when you walk into those situations.

Jeremy Cline 15:33
Okay, so that's something which you can do from a mindset perspective, from the outset. What about in terms of external behaviours that you can exhibit talking to people or doing things? That sort of thing?

Jamie Crosier 15:48
Yeah, that is a great question. I always like to think about it as like an equity bank account, my relationship with each person, I think about each relationship with someone that I work with, as a bank account. I go out of my way to compliment or to agree with on something that they're working on. So let's just take marketing, for example, I have a marketing background, I love things that have to do with marketing. Maybe I'm working with a marketing team, and someone on the team is creating a branded font for a business. And in my mind, I think I like the way that looks, instead of just thinking it in my mind, something positive about that situation, actually speaking out in front of the team, if that works, or just individual to that person any say, You know what, when you presented that font that's going to be branded for the company, I really thought that was original. That was awesome. I loved that. Or even when you are in a conversation with a group of people, and let's say someone says, You know, I think that we should change the branding colour for this company from this to this, if I think that's a good idea, I don't really have anything to add to it one way or the other. But I think it's a good idea. I'm going to say out loud. You know, John, that's a great idea. I really agree with that. So a lot of times we think we think, right, both positive and negative things, several, how many thoughts do we have have a day we have anywhere from 9,000 to I think it's 30,000 thoughts a day, women usually have closer to the 30,000 thoughts than men. So when you think about how many of those thoughts you have a day, the ones that are a positive about the workplace, or about someone in particular on your team, go ahead and say them. Go ahead and say them out loud, say them in the meeting. Honour people in front of other people, how do you feel when someone does that for you, when you've put time into creating a branded font, or whatever it might be for your workplace, and someone else notices and says, I really liked that idea. I really liked the way that you did that. It means a lot, it deposits something into that relationship bank. So the first thing I try to do is start depositing those things into my relationship banks with people it doesn't mean placating or saying things you don't mean. Be genuine, that's most important. Because when you're not it's pretty easy to tell. Be genuine. But when you think positive things about someone or something, go ahead and speak it out and tell them because as you deposit those things into your friendship relationship bank account, you're building equity. And so let's say you do that, you do that several times a day, you're complimenting people, you're letting them know that you notice what they did, that you agreed with that idea, or even you said, you know what I never thought about it that way, I'm going to think about what you said and see if I can do that better. Then let's say next week, they come and they've created something or spent time on something and you have a legit reason to say that you don't agree with that idea. It comes across so much better when you have already deposited so many positive things into that bank account you have with them. Because every time you correct someone, every time you disagree with someone, every time you want to propose an opposing idea, you're actually withdrawing some of that equity. So then in that meeting, when you say you know what I understand what you're saying here, but this is what I think about it. The person immediately - without even knowing! - they are checking their equity with you. And if they respect you, if they feel like this is an honest opinion that you are bringing to the table, they don't feel threatened by you, they are going to hear what you have to say, their defences aren't going to rise up, they're going to be able to know Okay, thanks for sharing that because you have built up that equity already in the past.

Jeremy Cline 19:19
I can see this being an extremely valuable tool and activity and just change the way you act in the workplace in terms of interpersonal relationships. So if the problem at work is not getting on with people, then yeah, this is something that you can try to see how you can improve that aspect of it. Now, interpersonal relationships at work are an extremely important aspect of any workplace, but they're not necessarily the only one. So perhaps we can talk about some of the other things that might be when you're at the start of this process that might be wrong, something like I find the work really boring, that sort of thing. So that's not going to necessarily be solved or tested by going around and more positive with people. So what can you do to test that over this three to six month period you've got?

Jamie Crosier 20:17
That is a really good question. That might actually be easier than dealing with people! I think if we are doing some type of work that in of itself doesn't give us life, then something to do with that work is not a strength of ours. I love to find out what my strengths are and spend time building up my strengths, then spend time building up my weaknesses. Here's an example that I heard, let's say there's someone who really wants to be a singer. But she has no talent, I use myself as this example, I would love to be on the stage and be a singer in front of 1000 people, but they would probably throw tomatoes at me because I just don't have the talent. Now I can sign up for a class, I can take voice lessons for years and years and years, I can spend all that time. If I don't, if I'm not wired to have that talent, I will only reach a certain level regardless of the amount of classes that I take, if it's just not something that I am wired to do. Whereas you might have someone else who's just born with that natural talent and she loves to do it, she may not need to take any classes, she doesn't need to work hard at all. He or she walks in the door and she can sing to 1000 people and they love her and give her a standing ovation. But put that into our workplace, we might find ourselves in a job in a position doing something that really just doesn't utilise our strengths. And so we feel like we're beating our head against the wall, because we are trying so hard and so hard to like this or make it better. And it just isn't. I would say identifying what your strengths are is the first thing that you should do. A great tool that I personally like to use is Strength Finders from Gallup, it's a book, you can get it on Amazon or any major bookstore and it comes with a little test. I love personality tests, I've probably taken every single one that's out there. It's my favourite thing. I love Strength Finders by Gallup by far the most, because Gallup is one of worldwide leaders in research. And it goes into a lot of detail. So by doing that, when you do that test, you get your top five strengths. And in each one of those - and you can read about what those are - it talks about how you can use this in the workplace. And even some of those give examples, such as if you're doing this for your job, try doing it this way. Here's a great example, if you are a writer, and you are just having a difficult time writing, and that's your job, and you have to write or you have to edit copy or you know, whatever it might be, and you are just struggling with that work over and over again, well, maybe your strength is communication, but maybe it's more communication with people or talking talking something out. So then it might be grab a microphone and record yourself writing something before you try to put pen to paper if you get stuck, because your strength is actually speaking things out and talking to an audience. So pretend you're talking to an audience face to face, grab a microphone and record yourself. And that might help the roadblock of sitting down and trying to write something pen to paper just on your computer. So it gives examples in that book, it gives examples of how you can kind of tweak what you do to make it fit the strengths that you have. And I think it also will give someone freedom because if they read something, and then realise, you know what 100% of what I'm doing actually falls into my weakness categories. Instead of just Well, I'm just going to leave this job and this job sucks. Actually, if you do leave that job, you are going to leave being equipped knowing what your strengths are, each one of the strengths in that book comes with them an example of where you might be best suited to work, what type of work you might be best suited to do. So I think in that situation, a person probably won't need three to six months to decide if this is really what they should be doing. I think pretty quickly after going through that and implementing what they suggest into the workplace, you will find out actually this is a weakness of mine. It isn't suited for me. But I'm equipped to know that there's a variety of other things that are already my strengths, that I can walk into and succeed right off the bat because they are strengths of mine.

Jeremy Cline 24:23
What about where you have something which you think is a strength but you don't necessarily enjoy doing it?

Jamie Crosier 24:28
Many strengths are equally your weaknesses. So my strength is communication. Actually, that's my number one strength - communication. And that really came as no surprise to me that it was a strength of mine, but it becomes a weakness because I say things that I shouldn't say, I talk too much in meetings, I over-communicate. In the workplace, I would probably send my team 10 emails a day or more because I feel like everything I want to communicate is so important because it's a passion of mine and it's a strength of mine. I have to hone it in and I have to realise just because this is a strength of mine of communication, my teammates in the workplace don't want to receive 10 emails from me or more. They don't want me to speak up in every conversation and give my opinion on every single thing. So for me, it's a constant reminder of keeping that strength kind of in a checks and balance, have I deposited the equity before I say something and speak into this? Does this really need to be an email right now? Can I type it out and save it as a draft. And then when I have something more to add to it, add, so I only sending one email a day that has all 10 items listed in it in an easy to read format. So I think depending on what your strength is, you're right, you're going to find that there's a weakness to it. And sometimes you think that weakness, you just don't identify it that, oh, that's a weakness, not because it's something wrong for me, but because I don't know how to drive that strength. I don't know how to use it. If you give someone a bike that's never learned how to ride a bike, they're not going to ride ride the bike, they're going to get on it, they're going to fall off, they're going to scrape their knee. But if they can learn how to ride the bike, then once they know how to do it, they become like, oh, this can take me anywhere I want to go, I just had to learn how to do that is the same way with our strengths, our strengths can take us anywhere we want to go. But we do need to learn how to drive them.

Jeremy Cline 26:18
I think that's a really good point. And I kind of think myself, one of the things that I think is one of my strengths is I'm quite analytical, I'll research things a lot, I'll kind of go down to the nth degree, and then realise that I'm starting to get frustrated with myself in doing that. So it could be I'm buying a new washing machine and I'll start doing this research and then go into something else, and then go into something else, and then go into something else. And I know that I am very good at researching things, but then I realise it's driving me absolutely potty and I'm just stressing myself out looking at things. To me, I don't know about anyone else, but to me, that's quite a good example of using the strength the wrony way, it's kind of like you said, knowing when to stop. Okay, you've got the hang of pedalling, but now you need to be able to know when to press the handbrake as well.

Jamie Crosier 27:06
My husband, his number one is analytic in Strength Finders. And so we like to say I'm the gas and he's the brakes. But I like this example, because it's really good - once you identify what your strength is, you can also identify how that can be a weakness, then you pair yourself in the workplace environment with someone who can balance that out. And a lot of times, that's where tension comes in, because we are working with people that are different than us. But when we can realise, no, actually they balance out my strengths and my weaknesses, and we can be a team then in the workplace, you can be so much more efficient. When you make sure that people on the team, you let them strive in their strength, and you let them balance out your strengths and your weaknesses.

Jeremy Cline 27:51
We're still in this three, six months phase. And we're now looking at strengths. Is something that we should be doing during this three to six month test period, as well as identifying what our strengths are and how best we can use them, what is the right way for us to use them - is that period also a time to look whether that is available in our place of work? Because presumably, I've been hired to do a job. And it might be that actually I am better personally suited to doing something else, query is that something else going to be available in my place of work? Is that something that we try to look for as well?

Jamie Crosier 28:28
I think absolutely. My hope would be that in those workplace environments that there is a boss or a supervisor or business owner that really wants to put people into roles where they can thrive in their strength, obviously, that's going to be the best for the business, any business that each person in each role is doing something that they can succeed in. There's that factor. I think it also goes down to the personal factor as well of your bank with your supervisor, your bank with the business owner, your bank with your boss, do what they're asking you to do. I like to say it's leaders pay the freight, leaders are the first to go. So if you're leading yourself, well, you're going to have to pay the freight first. An example of that is when before I was a pastor, I volunteered at the church I unclogged a lot of toilets. That's what I did, unclogging toilets, it's not a strength of mine. It doesn't give me any joy. I'm not excited about going in to unclog toilets, personally, or cleaning things like that. They're just not strengths of mine. But when I dedicated time to doing it, because that's what I was asked to do, and then I was able to identify what my strengths are, I had enough equity with the person that gets to make that decision in that particular job to say guess what, I did the Strength Finders test, and I found out that I am wired to do these things very well. And I noticed that in our company, there's a position that outlines pretty much the same things, however you want to word that, and then kind of ask them do you think that I would be well suited for that someday? Or a great open ended question would be, can you let me know, can you speak into how I can grow into a role that looks like XYZ. Another example of this for me is I love to speak, I love to preach, I love to go to conferences and speak, I just love to talk. But I also know that I need to grow in the way that I organise data, the way that I present information, so it's in a cohesive manner that people can understand, that I stay on track and don't go over time because I love to talk. I can do that, I can take a 30 minute message and make it two hours. So I go to my senior leader and say this communication is a strength of mine. And I would love to provide that strength for our church. But I also know that I need to grow. And I would love to be in a position that I can do this more. But can you just mentor me? Can you give me some pointers when we meet to have our annual review or monthly review - or however your company works - can you give me some pointers on how I might grow into that role, so that if it ever becomes available, I might be considered, if I were a boss, or a supervisor or a business owner, I would feel so good that my employee came to me for advice, my employee came to me and let me know that they are looking to move into a role that will utilise their strengths rather than if they didn't say anything. Because if they didn't say anything, and they didn't let me know, they're going to be unhappy for only a certain period of time, and then they're going to leave the company. But if I can put them into a role that best utilises their strengths, and there's a mutual trust in that relationship, and growing into that as soon as that role comes up, and as soon as I feel this person is ready to step into that, I am sure going to give them that position. So I would say to answer your question, if that works in your work environment, you see that there's another role that's really best suited for you talking to your supervisor about it, but more asking them for advice, letting them know that you feel like you would be qualified for that, that you're excited about that, this is actually a strength of yours. And then just saying what do you think that looks like, and allow them to speak into it, they'll feel so honoured that you came and spoke to them about it.

Jeremy Cline 31:59
Let's just fast forward to the end of our six month test period. And you've mentioned that a certain amount of this is going to be based on guts, you're just sort of feeling better. But for those of us who are perhaps a bit more analytically minded, what can you kind of do as you get to the end of that six months in terms of taking stock? How can you kind of get the thoughts more organised in your head so you can start to think well, either no I've given it my best shot, I think I do need to look for something else, or you know what, this is worth pursuing, it's worth giving it a bit longer.

Jamie Crosier 32:32
You know, whenever we are making big decisions, it's very difficult to have clarity when we're making them in the heat of the moment. And when unhealthy tensions are high. So if we have really gone through this three to six month period of leading ourselves well, and being responsible for ourselves, automatically by the end of that period, our tensions are going to be lower, and we are not going to be in the heat of the moment. So we will have lots of clarity. And when we get to that point, I think whichever way you decide to go, it's going to be very clear, we're going to look back at the six months and say, Wow, I have seen so much growth in myself, I've actually become friends with my coworkers, I've learned how to take these tasks where before just gave me indigestion thinking about having to do them, where now I actually look forward in the morning to going. I see the value in what I do, I don't want to leave this place, that's going to happen. And then you will just continue your everyday that way, and it will only get better and better. Or you say okay, I'm at the end of my six months, and I've learned how to lead myself well, I've learned what my strengths are, I've implemented them. I've deposited feedback into the bank accounts of my relationship of people that I work with, I've done a few things, I feel like I've learned a lot about myself. And I can honestly say that even with all of these things, this isn't a good fit for me. But now I know what type of role, what type of job, what type of career would be a good fit for me. And I can confidently look for those things and know that when I walk into that role, I'm already equipped to succeed.

Jeremy Cline 34:05
Do you recommend any sort of taking stock exercise, two columns on a piece of paper or anything like that? Or is it just the case of at the end of that period, you've got a pretty good idea?

Jamie Crosier 34:16
I think it will go into your personality type. So finding your strengths will help you determine how best to make a decision. My guess would be if you are like my husband, my husband wants data, he would probably want to chart something out, write a list of pros and cons, probably even track some of the progress but for someone like me, I'm more of a feelings person. I'm more of a compassionate heart. And so I might think of I might just focus on how I'm personally feeling and my gut instinct, but because that's a strength of mine, now that I know how to use my strength, I can pretty well trust my gut instinct. I'm confident with those decisions. For someone who is more about analytics, you know the research that you've done, you know it's solid research, you know that you can look at that and you can trust when you get to making a decision, you can trust that it's the right one because you've done the research. So depending on on your strength will depend on how you come to that decision towards the end. But I would say for someone maybe like you, like my husband, yes, making a list of pros and so that you can actually look at and see, we'll help you make a decision.

Jeremy Cline 35:22
Jamie, there's been some fantastic content, thought experiments, practical experiences people can do here. Something I probably should have asked you earlier on in this interview, but how did you come to come by all this insight, and all these exercises and resources?

Jamie Crosier 35:39
Well, we mentioned that I'm a pastor, so I'm a person of faith. But about 10 years ago, I had just a meltdown. My marriage was failing, I was filing for divorce, moved out of my house, I was working at a place where basically, it was punching numbers from one thing to the next in accounting, and there has to be something more is what I thought. I was upset in every area of my life. And you know, in that moment, I found faith. But I also found that I was looking at a lot of things the wrong way, I was putting it on other people, I was putting it on my husband to make me happy, I was putting it on my children to make me feel like a good mother, I was putting it on my work to give me satisfaction, I was putting it on my workplace, people that I worked with, other co-workers to make me feel like what I did mattered. And it was then when I realised that really is not their responsibility, the responsibility lies within myself. And so that was a time of really digging to see what that looks like. And I actually found that I love counting, I love punching numbers, I just didn't realise that what I did mattered. I had a great boss at the time. And I basically told her, my life is a mess. I don't love my job, I don't love my husband, I don't love anything, I'm a failure at everything, and I'm just doing everything wrong. And she took some time to explain to me, at least with my role there in the business, what punching those numbers mean, it means that we're sure that the bank accounts are where they're supposed to be, it means that we're sure that we're spending the money that we're supposed to spend or not spend. And every time I do that, and every time I make sure that my job is done well, I'm securing that our factory line workers are making the right products, I'm securing that we're being efficient as a company, at that point, that company, I think had 100 or 200 employees, that I am ensuring that we're being efficient so that they can all have jobs and go home and feed their families. And every time that I walk in and out of the office, I need to be looking at those employees and realise that what I'm doing by checking our bank accounts matters in that way. It just gave me a whole different perspective. Because I have a heart of compassion, not analytical, I have a heart of compassion. And so I realised for myself what I do matters. And once that changed, I noticed that people started coming into my office and asking questions like what changed, something has changed in you, you like what you're doing? Why do you like what you're doing. And they were often people that didn't like what they were doing, either. They wanted to know, I want what you have. And so when I explain to them, how what we do matters, and how people rely on us in this business relies on us. And this business then can pay employees who can then provide food for their families. And it helps our small community that what we do matters, it started to radiate into other people. And other people started to think that what they did mattered as well. And it just created a culture. And I wish I could say that I was the one who created that culture. Honestly, it was my boss, it was my boss who sat down and really instilled in me that what I did mattered. But even if we are working in a place that we don't have a supervisor like that we can do it just ourselves. And so then it became that people they actually used to joke and call me Pastor Jamie, this is before I even attended a church, they used to say, if you have any problems, go talk to Pastor Jamie and they would come over and and even start to share their personal problems. Because through this, my marriage was healed as well, because I realised that my husband wasn't even responsible for my happiness, only I was, and my relationship with God. Freeing my husband from that allowed him to find his own strengths and be his own person. And it helped our relationship. So then people were coming in and asking how is this? I want what you have. So that process actually led me into doing more research. I was on a few other podcasts, a few other shows, just because of people being interested in we see the change that this had in your life, how can we have the change in our life and I'm not an expert with big letters behind my name. I'm not a doctor, I have not gone to school for this. My schooling is unrelated, it's life experience. And it's actually taking the time to put these things into practice and seeing the change, so much so that other people see it and notice it too and start to ask questions. And that has given me just an opportunity to share what I've learned in different platforms and and over the past 10 years, grow in it and read books myself and learn things all the time.

Jeremy Cline 39:52
So you've mentioned one book, the Gallup Strength Finders books, are there any other books, quotes, resources that you can recommend that people could look into to learn more about this sort of thing.

Jamie Crosier 40:03
Yeah, I have two others. There's a book called How to Lead When You're Not in Charge. I believe it's by Clay Scroggins. And then the other book is Keep Your Love On by Danny Silk. And both of these books talk about how you can only control yourself, and give you some ideas and pointers on how you can control yourself pretty much in any situation in the workplace or in relationships. The great thing about Gallup with Strength Finders and about the Keep Your Love On is both of those authors and research companies have podcasts. So if you love listening to podcasts and don't want the book, you can look for their podcasts, and you can get things on a weekly basis, just little golden nuggets.

Jeremy Cline 40:48
And where can people find you if they want to get in touch with you?

Jamie Crosier 40:51
Oh, yeah, well, I'm on Facebook, like most people! My name on there is Jamie Crosier, if you search you might be able to find me. But I have a new website organizelikeapro.us, and there's a contact on there too, so you can find me there either way.

Jeremy Cline 41:05
Fantastic. I will link to both of those in the show notes. Jamie, this has been really, really interesting. Lots of great exercises and thought experiments. So thank you so much.

Jamie Crosier 41:14
Thank you so much for having me.

Jeremy Cline 41:16
Okay, hope you enjoyed that interview with Jamie Crosier. Well, I have to say the idea of not necessarily jumping ship, but seeing what you can do to improve things within your place of work, I thought that was a really interesting one. I love this concept of leading yourself and identifying what things you might be able to do either within yourself within your mindset, or in your interactions with other people to try and improve the position. Sure, in some cases, that's not always going to work. But Jamie made a great point that just think about what you've learned from the act of doing it. So you know, maybe it takes you three months, six months, whatever. And then at the end of that, maybe you conclude Nope, it's still not the right place for you. But just the exercise, the having gone through that process means that you will set yourself up for just a better chance of success in future roles. It's definitely also worth bearing in mind what Jamie was saying about conflict and tension potentially being good. If you're having a disagreement with someone about how something should be run, well, that probably is an indicator that both of you really care about what you're talking about. You might have a different point of view, but it's worth bearing that in mind, we're having this disagreement because we both care about what we're doing. It goes to a wider point of putting yourself in the shoes of the other person, what are their motivations? What are they thinking about? What are their concerns, there's definitely a lot to be said for thinking about these things from the perspective of the other person. Show notes with links to the resources mentioned by Jamie and where you can find her including a link to her new podcast are all at changeworklife.com/61. And whilst you're there, it's worth revisiting Episode 55 with Doug Levin, in that episode, we talked about what it takes to make a really good CV, a CV that's going to go through the automated and human operated applicant tracking systems. He's got some great advice as to both the form and content of your CV, of your resume. And don't forget that if you would like to take advantage of Doug's services, get some professional help with your CV or resume then if you go to changeworklife.com/jobstars then you'll be able to get 10% off the services which Doug has to offer should you wish to take advantage of them. We've got another great interview next week where one of the things we're going to be looking at is imposter syndrome. That feeling that why are you the person who's doing this and teaching this, what makes you so special that you are able to do this? That's what we talk about. It's going to be a great episode and I can't wait to see you then. Cheers. Bye.

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