Leader Assistant Podcast Ask Me Anything

In this Ask Me Anything episode of The Leader Assistant Podcast, I do my best to answer the following questions from assistants all over the world:

  • Do you ever suffer from imposter syndrome?
  • Have you ever reached a place when you want to leave a company or are feeling unfulfilled and how have you dealt with that? What conversations have you had?
  • What was the transition like from working within a church (non-profit) environment and then transitioning to the corporate (for-profit) world? I’m really interested to hear the positives you experienced, challenges you faced, etc.
  • How do you deal with high pressure situations?
Jeremy and Meg Picture on Hike

I’m a longtime executive assistant, international speaker and trainer, founder of The Leader Assistant Community and Premium Membership, author of the #1 Amazon Bestselling book, The Leader Assistant: Four Pillars of a Confident, Game-Changing Assistant, and host of the #1 podcast for assistants – The Leader Assistant Podcast.

I’ve worked with CEOs, professional athletes, Fortune 100 board members, billionaires, pastors—and their assistants—in both the nonprofit and for-profit sectors.

I’ve also had the opportunity to speak at administrative professional and executive assistant conferences all over the world, including Hong Kong, Thailand, and Germany.

I’m currently EA to the Founder and CEO of Capacity, a fast-growing artificial intelligence SaaS startup with an AI-powered, support automation platform.

My passion is to help you lead well, resist burnout, and automate before you’re automated.

I live in Kansas City, MO with my amazing wife and 2 boys. My hobbies are podcasting, beer, music, stocks, and entrepreneurship.


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Podcast Intro 0:03
The Leader Assistant Podcast exists to encourage and challenge assistants to become competent game changing leader assistants.

Jeremy Burrows 0:15
Hey, leader assistants, it’s episode 128. And today’s Ask me anything. Episode is going to start off with a question from Missy. See, Missy says, Do you ever suffer from imposter syndrome? I feel like I have so much to offer my fellow admins where I work, but then I think who am I to think I know more than they do. It’s a personal struggle for me, missy? Yes, I think we all struggle with impostor syndrome to some extent. But yeah, I mean, who am I to think I could have a podcast every week that helps assistants who might think that I could write a book, for assistants. That’s a guide for being an assistant. Those are the things that I’ve thought, hundreds of times over the last couple of years. And, you know, I think that the key to remember is, every one of us has different unique experience. Everyone, every one of us has a unique perspective on life and on this role, the executive assistant imaginary professional role. And every one of us is suffering from impostor syndrome, to an extent. And so if you remember that, then you realize, okay, well, I’m not the only one feeling this. And if everyone were to not speak up, and not share their story, and not give their advice and their opinion on things and how they think we could work better, then no one would get anywhere. So but one of the best things I’ll also say about this is, if you can remember that things that to you seem ordinary, maybe it’s certain aspects of your job, or things that you do in your role that make you a better assistant. Things that might seem ordinary to you will seem extraordinary to someone else, that will just blow their mind, because they’ve never thought of it that way. Or they’ve never done things that way. And so they just, they just don’t know. And so that I would just remember that. And that helps me keep sharing my thoughts and do an episode of the podcast every week for almost two years straight. There actually might have been two years straight now. I think I skipped one holiday in there somewhere. So yeah, I think that, just remember that we’re all struggling with it. But we also all have something to contribute, and so speak up. But yes, great question. Definitely a challenge. Katie T asks, Have you ever reached a place when you wanted to leave a company or are feeling unfulfilled? And how have you dealt with that? What conversations have you had? Yeah, so I talked about this in my book, a little bit about my story, when I was an executive assistant in my prior role, I was burning out. And I was just like, not very excited about the company. But I was I still felt a calling, if you will to support my executive in his family. But I was burning out. And so I had a conversation, I said, Listen, I am not going to be able to keep doing things the way we’re doing them. We’re just working too much. I’m unfulfilled. And we just just put it out on the table and try to work through it. And then unfortunately, a few months later, he ended up getting fired. So we didn’t end up getting to get into it too much. But I think that it’s okay to want to leave a company, it’s okay to feel unfulfilled. But really try to get to the root of why. And I talk about that as well. In the leader assistant book, where I talk about the mismatch different types of reasons that in stressors that could be driving you to burnout and company value mismatch. Executive mismatch are a couple of them, but you can dig in deeper in that book. Let’s see, I think it’s chapter 24 should be chapter 24. All right. Aaron D. asks, What was the transition like working for going from working within a church or nonprofit environment and then transitioning to the corporate world? I’m really interested to hear the positives you experienced and the challenges you faced etcetera. Great. Question, Erin. So for those of you who don’t know, I worked in a nonprofit church for 12 years, and then I transitioned to a for profit, artificial intelligence Software as a Service, or SaaS company called capacity. And I had never been in the for profit world as an assistant. And really, I mean, I’d been at Walmart when I was in high school, but I don’t really count that. And yeah, I mean, it’s definitely a transition, I would say, break it up into the challenges in the positive the challenges were, you know, in a nonprofit, a lot of the times you’re doing something that you believe and that your team believes is going to change the world, whether it’s a church, or whether it’s, you know, feeding the poor, nonprofit, or a nonprofit that helps rescue young women out of sex trafficking, a lot of these you know, or maybe bring water to third world countries that need clean water, nonprofits are very big picture, like change the world, like, we’re in this together. And that can be a positive, because everyone’s on the same mission, and everyone just believes in what you’re doing and believes that you’re changing the world, and it can be a fun, exciting environment to be in and really feel like you’re making an impact on the world. And, you know, it’s, it’s kind of it’s like, not about money, it’s about helping people. Well, one of the kind of, on the flip side, one of the challenges in the negative parts of that nonprofit world is, it usually pays a lot less. So you have to give up a lot as far as your kind of lifestyle, or, you know, lit means the means in which you live. And so you just have to be okay with not making much money. And I was for a while, and thankfully, I was able to pay my bills. And, you know, God provided to, you know, for my family, but I was definitely underpaid. I was definitely underpaid, especially the last four years that I was there. And the transition was was kind of a shocker in a way because it was like, You go from being in a nonprofit, where pretty much everyone you work with is is kind of the same type of people, they have the same mission, they have the same values, the same beliefs. And then you work in a in a corporate environment or a for for profit environment. And everyone’s different. Everyone’s got different beliefs, different values, different worldviews. And that’s definitely a change. And I actually enjoyed that I was actually encouraged and excited to be in an environment where not everybody was just like me, I think that’s healthy to be in that sort of more diverse environment. And then, one of the challenges was, I had no idea what anything meant when it came to software, because, you know, went to a software company, and I’ve never done anything with software developing. And everyday anything with, you know, revenue numbers, and sure, we sure we raise money, we had capital campaigns and stuff, but we didn’t have revenue numbers we didn’t have like, we weren’t talking about profit margins, we weren’t talking about, you know, equity, or, you know, raising series, a round or Series B round, and dilution, and all that kind of stuff. So, definitely a challenge to jump into that world, which was new to me. However, I will say, if you’re thinking about if you’re at a nonprofit, or maybe a higher ed, which can be similar to nonprofits, a lot of times underpaid, different types of systems, and then you’re trying to jump into software or a corporate environment. I will say that there, the role of an EA, is is pretty much the same. So even though I had that shock of I’ve never worked in a software company, or for profit, and all these people are different than me. I was able to, I was confident in my ability to figure things out. And I was confident in my EA abilities and they translated very, very well. So don’t be afraid to jump ship. If you feel like you’re ready to switch one way or the other. Your EA skill set in your leader assistant. Game Changing skills will translate on both sides. So definitely be encouraged by that if that’s what you’re thinking about a good question. Good question. All right. Terry D asks, How do you deal with high pressure situations? Really good question. I talked about being steady. In the chaos, steady in the storms, in the book, chapter four of the leader assistant, you can find that at Amazon dot leader assistant.com. There’s also a, I think there’s a podcast episode look real quick at my schedule

where I talk about being steady. And if not, maybe I’m thinking of the audio book to be honest. So anyway, just look up the book, chapter four, study chapter. But the things I will say here real quick are I take a deep breath, and I thrive on high pressure situations. I do not like boring environments, I really want there to be some pressure, I really, I really love it when there’s a lot of anxiety and a lot of a lot on the line, if you will. And so high pressure situations Bring it on. I think that part of the reason I enjoy them is it just it just gives me a chance to lead when others are kind of freaking out and not able to lead or they’re, they’re paralyzed by the high pressure situations. And I think why I’m able to do that is because I really don’t, I do my best to detach my worth from my work. And so, if your entire well being in meaning in life and worth as a human being is tied to how that high pressure situation turns out, then you’re really going to struggle. But if you detach your worth as a human being from that high pressure situation, you’ll be able to execute at a high level and really lead others and lead yourself through that situation. So anyway, great question. Dear Terry. I hope that’s helpful. Yeah, feel free to reach out if you have follow up questions. And if you have other questions that you’d like me to answer in an Ask Me Anything formatted episode in the future, email them to podcast at leader assistant.com. Hopefully those are helpful and I look forward to chatting next week for another episode in the Ask Me Anything series. Talk soon.

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Podcast Intro 12:51
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