Finding a Job in 90 Days or Less Even If You’re a Foreign Student With No Money

This is a great interview with Jette Stubbs, the host of “The Happy Career Formula Podcast with Jette Stubbs” podcast. This was her story as a foreign student needing to find a job in 90 days or be deported.

You may also find “Answering Either/Or Questions” helpful

Read Full Transcript

Jeff Altman 00:01
So, my guest today is Jette Stubbs, a career coach and business coach and the podcast hosts for Happy Career Formula with Jette Stubbs. When Jette graduated from university as an international student, she had 90 days to find the job or leave the country. I'll speak from experience from wherever worked in search. That is not a lot of time. Since then, she's helped recent grads up from corporate executives find, what they love to do and sell themselves in Canada, the US, the UK and over 40 Industries. Jette, how the heck are you? Welcome.

Jette Stubbs 00:42
Thank you so much for having me, Jeff. I'm so excited to be here. I'm doing well. How are you?

Jeff Altman 00:47
I feel fabulous today and I know we're going to have a good conversation.

Jette Stubbs 00:51
Yes, we are.

Jeff Altman 00:53
90 days to find the job. How did you pull that one off?

Jette Stubbs 01:00
So, when I graduated from university, I was an international student in Canada. I'm originally from the Bahamas and so, I graduated international student, I was a first-generation student as well which means my parents hadn't went to university. So, I was in a country without any family and if I wanted to stay, I had 90 days to find a job or leave a country because of the immigration processes basically. I had no connections, no family in the country. I realized I had a ton of skills. I had volunteered a lot. I had worked a lot. I built out my education. I did what people are taught, you are supposed to do, get your education and experience and hard work and that should equal success.

Jeff Altman 01:52
(Inaudible) Yes. Okay.

Jette Stubbs 01:54
Exactly but then, I sent out over 100 job applications and I got zero responses. So, I was devastated. I was like, how am I going to figure this out in such a short timeframe and I really wanted to stay. What I did was I took in a ton of resources, newcomer immigration workshops to help you get employment. I didn't have clothes. I went to the clothing bank to get clothing that they make accessible for new immigrants. I went to my university career center and then what I realized was, I was getting all of this conflicting advice. People were saying a resume should look like this. Resume should look like that. You should network this way; you should network that way. It's just didn't make any sense. Then I started to look for the patterns. I was like, this isn't making any sense.

Let me look for the patterns for what everybody is saying is true, what all of these sites are saying is true. Are there any patterns or principles at play? Then I took that response rate from 0% response rate to a 70% response rate. So, I sent out an application for 10 job applications. I got seven interviews. I landed a job that paid more than what I wanted in the city that I wanted to live in at the company that I wanted to work in the field that I wanted to work in. Then it started from there, people started asking me for advice. So, that's how it started.

Jeff Altman 03:17
I got to pause for a second because I heard one thing that might just slide by the listeners or viewers and that's the idea that you sent out 100 resumes, no response. But then you sent out 10 resumes and got seven responses. What did you learn that prompted you to narrow focus to that degree?

Jette Stubbs 03:41
So, I figured out that what I was doing when I was sending out 100 job applications is, I was basically saying, ''this is what I've done in the past, tell me what I can do to help your company''. I wasn't giving any sort of guidance, ''I was saying I need to make money, tell me what to do and this is what I've done in the past''. That's what those 100 job applications were doing. When I narrowed it down to 10 job applications, I really spent time tailoring those applications and so, what I was able to say to employers was, this is how I can help your organization. My resume is a history of solving problems and meeting other people's needs and solving similar problems to the problems that you are facing right now as an organization which is why you're hiring for this role. I understand your problem here is how I can help. This is how you can reach me if you want to move on to the next stage of that discussion. So, it was a mindset shift from just saying, this is my education, my hard work, my experience.

Jeff Altman 04:40
Please talk to me and coming in as the beggar.

Jette Stubbs 04:45
You are right. That's how I describe it to you. I said instead of just begging for any job or waiting for the perfect job to come on your lap and somebody say, ''here I'm giving you an opportunity''. Now shift it and say, ''this is how I can help your organization. These are the values, the skills, the qualifications and experience I bring to add value to your organization to help you get closer to achieving your organizational goals''.

Jeff Altman 05:09
And one thing that you didn't mention that I know from our conversation previously, it wasn't about just taking any job. Here's about taking one that you really want.

Jette Stubbs 05:24
Yes. So, what I wrote down when I first started out which ended up becoming the name of my podcast, everything I do now is I don't want just any job. I want a happy career. So, I was terrified of being stuck living paycheck to paycheck, not being able to afford to pay bills or visit my family. I'm living in a cold country that during that time when I had 90 days to find a job or leave the country, I didn't have money. Money was running out. I had to walk 45 minutes to work 2 hours than walk 45 minutes back home. So, I was almost walking as much as I was working. I didn't want to be stuck in this cycle of a dead-end job where I feel stuck. I feel trapped. I wanted to build a new future that had promise in a new country. So, if I was going to do that, I need to figure out what that look like and I came up with this formula. First, I started off with looking at what I want my life to look like. So, number one, is I looked at what I want my life to look like, what I call desire.

Desire is the things that you want to make you happy on a daily basis, on a monthly basis, on a weekly basis and it's not saying I will achieve x then I'll be happy. It's saying these are the things that bring me joy on a daily basis. How can I integrate this into my career? And how can I then use these as negotiation points in the future when I'm talking salary negotiation. So, that's the first piece desire. The second piece is I realized, I needed to shift from solving a problem to meeting demand. Sorry, I needed to shift from just saying, I'm going to do any and everything and I begging for a job to solving a problem and meeting demand. When I made that shift, I really looked at what are the problems that exist that I can start to solve. The desires, desire is what I wanted to live demand are the things that other people or companies want out of life that I can help them solve. That is piece number two demand, I had to realistically look at what type of problems I can solve.

Jeff Altman 07:37
So, I'm going to pause there for a second, how do you find out what their demands are, what their needs are. Because it's not like you're applying to a job and so maybe you were and in doing so, how do you learn what those demands are other than the job description which may or may not be accurate?

Jette Stubbs 07:58
So, there were a few tricks, I used to really start to understand employer needs. One was job descriptions are more accurate, the more money that they are paying you. The more skin the company has in the game, the more money that they are paying you, the more accurate the job description becomes because they don't want to waste their money. They don't want to pay somebody $100,000 and then somebody not get the job done because they didn't actually hire them to do the right job. They're willing to pay somebody $10 an hour and it's a super vague job description and there are generalists and they don't know what they're going to do. So, what I did is, I looked at jobs a few levels above the one that I wanted to have. Let's say I wanted to be a marketing assistant.

I would look at VP of marketing or marketing manager and as honest as possible as I can be, I would sell my skills using the language of a VP of marketing, job description and when I did that, I started to shift, how I talked about myself to just saying, okay, just give me any kind of tasks. No, I understand the problems that exist within your company. I understand some of the objectives that you're trying to reach. These are how my skills come into play using your own words, using words that your company or companies like you are currently using. So, that piece was huge, despite dissecting job descriptions that were more advanced than the job that I was looking at and that works best if you look for a job that maybe is the person that you'd be reporting to or the person that they'd be reporting to. Just look a few levels up.

And that job descriptions give you a lot of insight. Job description usually says, you will be reporting to so and so look at that and then Google that job description. So, that gives your insight. The other piece that I did that was helpful for me as I started to do some informational interviews to start to dissect what types of problems exist. I reached out to people who were in the fields that I started to think were interesting that include reaching out to people on LinkedIn but more so trying to build a network when I didn't even have a network. I was at this place where I was reaching out to strangers and as a recent grad people are willing to be supportive and they are willing to help out and people heard my story. They're like, you're here alone. No family, you're trying to build a career.

Well, yeah, okay, I'll sit and have a 20-minute chat with you about, how I built my career and you're not just going to ask them about how they build their career, you're going to ask them about current problems or trends that they see existing because they have insider knowledge. This is when you're starting to get employer insight information and you're starting to read employers minds almost because you're speaking to all of the people who are inside that organization and you don't need a long-time frame to get that done. I did this within a 90-day window. So, that's one piece of it. The other piece is an internal piece. You can't solve all the problems that exist in the world. You need to start with looking at, what skills do you currently have that can add value to an organization.
And that's the third piece of my Venn diagrams was the desire, demand, and skills piece. I looked at my previous work history, my academic history, my volunteer experience, and I said, what did I like doing and what did I dislike doing, what were the pros, what were the cons. What type of work environments do I like, what work environments do I dislike, what type of activities, subjects and I wouldn't just say, oh, I liked human resources? I would say, well when the professor talked about this particular topic and human resources, I found this interesting. Let me google combinations of these different keywords and this is, what I call a job search rabbit hole and it's not doesn't just apply to jobs. It also applies to business. Whenever you are looking at unique skills and interests that you have, look at things that you think, don't usually go together and then type those in and see what jobs are popping up. You may discover a field that you've never even heard of before. Because there's so many jobs beyond, what you would find on a career test or on a personality quiz, you need to go well beyond that.

Jeff Altman 12:10
And it's interesting. Folks, I'll point out a couple of things that she said, number one is look for language and how to communicate a couple of levels up from where you are, minimally, one level up. So, you learn the language of the organization. Number two is using informational interviews, in order to extract information from people as a recent grad, she found that everyone was wanting to talk to her. It's like, they show mercy on you if you're stealing and there's the part of all of this where ultimately, you have to work to solve a problem for an organization and those informational interviews are a way to extract that kind of information from someone who may be doing this in a sense of market intelligence and thus be ready for interviewing. How did they do. Was that a good summation?

Jette Stubbs 13:07
You are really good at memorizing and giving feedback. I am horrible. I have to jot down notes all the time. I love that. That was amazing.

Jeff Altman 13:16
Thank you. So, what I'm hearing you talk about are ways to in effect, circumvent the line. Yes, you applied for jobs. Yes, you got interviews. But they're the people who are just doing that, you started off doing and the ones that are working at getting those interviews and putting in the effort to demonstrate excellence and that you're different than all the other people out there and thus, you're doing that through all this effort to do research. Got that one right too?

Jette Stubbs 13:55
Absolutely, that's exactly and it's so important to do that research to understand employer needs.

Jeff Altman 14:02
Now, maybe this wasn't an issue for you. But I tend to think if a job is posted and now a firm is inundated with resumes and if you apply too late then they are never going to look at your resume. Alright.

Jette Stubbs 14:20

Jeff Altman 14:21
Like, for example, on LinkedIn, the classic scenario is, okay, a new ad up there. Yes, I'm going to apply for this job and the issue comes down to now you're going to go off and do research and then you're going to apply, and by which point, the firm may not be looking at resumes. True.

Jette Stubbs 14:44
This is true. Yes, it can happen. What I found is if you'd understand, how to dissect those job descriptions and you look a few levels up, you can start to apply early on and ideally you want to hit the ground running before so, it took me about two days before I sent out those final 10 applications, I did give myself a bit of time. I had to because nothing else was working.

Jeff Altman 15:10
You were experimenting and you also got support with dressing for success which was great and folks, I'll remind you, especially the men because men are sloppy. Women get it. It's all about how you package yourself as well as what you know, men dressed like, I am today casual, you walk in comfortably and you're not looking great. So, that's a reminder for you, for the guys in particular, always look spectacular. They have nothing to criticize at that point about your appearance.

Jette Stubbs 15:49
Yes, that is true and honestly, it's hard. Like financially, if you don't have any money, I couldn't afford a suit. I eventually had a friend offered to buy me a cheap suit. Because a lot of the free places didn't have anything in my size. It just didn't fit, it looked horrible. So, that is a barrier. But even if you can't 100% look the part because you don't have all of these resources available then at least what you can do is you can start to....

Jeff Altman 16:31
And we're going to continue here and I'll just edit here. So, there's no issue and I'll wait for Jette to join because maybe there was a power drop.

Jette Stubbs 17:25
I am so sorry. We had an electricity outage just now.

Jeff Altman 17:29
I figured that out. Internet dropped.

Jette Stubbs 17:33
I'm so sorry. This is the first time it's happened during a meeting. So, sorry about that.

Jeff Altman 17:39
It's okay. I'll have a little explanation that I throw it in the middle and we were talking about wardrobe. The barriers for someone who doesn't have a lot of money to dress the part at the point that we pause there. So, is there something you remember you were saying that you'd want to hit in on?

Jette Stubbs 18:03

Jeff Altman 18:04

Jette Stubbs 18:05
So, when you're trying to dress the part, if you don't have the money or you don't have the financial resources to buy the suit, the discussion that you have with the employer, with the hiring person is also important. I remember the feeling I felt when I didn't feel, I looked the part, I had trouble putting off the professional persona, if I didn't have the financial resources. If I had scuffed shoes, things like that, that doesn't mean that you cannot get the job. It just means that you need to make sure that you are on point when you're having that discussion about how you add value and how you were solving problems and how you want to contribute to that organization. It also could mean that there's space for you to have more of a personal discussion.

I talked in my first interview where I landed on amazing jobs, I was so excited about I told him that I didn't have any family in the country. I was navigating, I told them my scenario. You can have those discussions. It's sometimes we get so intimidated by the interview that we get forget that in interviewers and employers are people too. They can understand and empathize with your journey. They want people on their team who are going to add value to the organization. You don't have to necessarily meet some perfect mold for, what you're wearing. It's about how you can help. Then when I joined the organization, I got hired, I bought new clothes.

Jeff Altman 19:26
And folks, it reminds me of so many stories. I've heard some great and moving stories like the first African American software engineer or systems engineer with Twitter and his story that he told in interviews about how he's have to travel two hours by bus through gang territory and I was two hours each way or at times, everyone knew to bend over so that they wouldn't be seen on the bus and thus be a target or someone else who I just interviewed who spoke about how he became a TV writer and talking about how would you really want to be a baseball player and how his parents insisted that he take one class that was a real class and he said, okay, writing class that's going to be easy and he got touched in the class and the first major writing assignment he did, was sufficiently good.

His teacher, who was a Broadway playwright, introduced him to someone who produced the play in Repertory Theater and Connecticut and little things changed lives and sharing those stories in interviews is huge for making connection. Because everyone says the same stuff, "hi, I'm going to work hard, I'm going to be a great employee, I can do this job" and each person does it in their way. But what makes you different and that's how you touch the heart of someone in the course of the interview and a story like yours, like these two people makes all the difference in the world of each of you as a story. Each of you has a way of expressing, how it was to be nine years old and how you're now where you are today. So, thank you, that's a great reminder for folks. You don't only work with beginners.

Jette Stubbs 21:32

Jeff Altman 21:33
You work with more seasoned people. How do you help them find the happy job, the one that makes them happy every day or most days, let's get real?

Jette Stubbs 21:44
Yeah, it's true. So, no job is perfect. It's not going to make you happy all the time. But what you can find is something we get you closer and closer to your life goals. So, what I find is, I work with the same type of person, they're just on different stages of their journey. Some people I've worked with, on and off for five or six years, I help them when they graduated out of university to get their first job then I help them when they wanted to go and get an MBA then I helped them get their first six figure opportunity and then now they're looking into branching out and becoming more entrepreneurial. What I found is the principles to sell yourself to find what you love to do to narrow down to work that aligns with who you are the skills that you want to bring to the table, the problems that you enjoy solving and the lifestyle that you want to live, the principles for doing that.

And then taking that in selling yourself to do it effectively are the same. So, you want to take your client or the employer from a place where they are struggling with some type of problem, you want to tell them specifically, how you are going to add value to help them get one step closer, what are the building blocks that you're going to bring to the table to help them get closer to a goal and then you want to make sure that you're delivering on those results and that you have some way of tracking that or some sort of metric to get feedback from the employer or from your client. I just teach people the same principles. I just teach them to use different tools slightly.

So, when you are moving from a more junior level role to a senior level role, you're going to have to talk a lot more about the metrics and the numbers and how you're going to use your leadership skills to lead teams, what is your leadership methodology. What are your principles and your values around how you cultivate an environment that's going to help them retain other quality staff members? That's the difference in conversation. So, it's the same principles, I just helped people, tweak them, and see how they apply more broadly to different scenarios.

Jeff Altman 23:44
So, with that person that you've worked with for a few years now. Give me an example of how you help them at the beginning and how it morphed as they got further along?

Jette Stubbs 24:01
Yeah, I'll actually give you a very recent example. I had somebody that I was working with was really unhappy with her job this was about a year ago and she quit her job randomly during the pandemic. She decided she wanted to totally rebuild and she came to me, and she said I need to create a new career path. I don't know what it's going to look like. But I've got a couple of months of leeway for funds to figure this out. If not, I can go and beg for my last job back and so, what I did, it wasn't the best plan. I would never recommend it, "please don't ever come to me doing that. I'll give a disclaimer. Don't ever do that to me".

But what I did with her is, I helped her build out a few different streams. So, one was we looked at the pros and cons from previous work experience is not that she disliked everything, but she liked disliked parts of it. We looked at what worked and what didn’t, and we try to incorporate more and more of what worked into some career options. For her, she was really passionate about writing in journalism but never thought it was a feasible career. Like it's one of those fields where it told you do it. But then how do you really turn it into a way to make money. Most people don't end up working in the field who will pay for your writing there, all these questions that come up. So, what I did was, she had done a lot of work on storytelling, and she was undervaluing that.

And that's something that's super common. When I'm working with people across these different stages. They tend to be undervaluing pieces of what they're doing and I've done that myself. I know what that's like. So, I helped her look at what she was doing that was adding value. What were people complimenting her on, what had her previous employers that was really good about her. What did she do for fun when she was really excited on the weekend, what did she do to fill her time and then how could we incorporate some of those activities into her work and I don't think that everything that you do for fun should become work that can become draining, it can create creative burnout but what are the things that create ongoing excitement for you that you can just learn about for days and days without it feeling like a job.

What would you do for free? So, we looked at some of those things and we came up with two paths for her. One is, she can do some editing work, she can work with people to home in their stories work with a publisher. The other part was she was really good at storytelling, and she can start to teach storytelling and what she ended up doing was getting a job teaching storytelling as a faculty role even though she just had an undergraduate degree. But she worked as an adjunct role with an organization. So, I taught her, how to analyze where people are struggling right now with their problems. For her, the organizations that she was working with and pitching herself to, were struggling with how to get people to tell stories in a powerful way.

Also, she had a diversity lens. She was coming at it as a woman of color as so many as part of the LGBTQ community and so, she had a diversity lens that was very powerful that she could integrate into her story about how she talked about the value that she could add to an organization. So, for her, we looked at getting her short-term income through employment and that was using the star or as you say, the SOAR approach. So, I teach the more traditional situation task action result. If we looked at where's the company at now, for her, these organizations are struggling with teaching, teaching adults, how to tell stories more effectively but also in a more conscious way, in a way that was more aware of the different audiences that they were speaking to. But also, if they wanted to, in corporate, ethnically diverse characters, how do they talk about those characters in a way that was authentic.

She had this unique lens that she'd never even thought of, right. So, we took that, and we incorporated it into a story that went, this is the problem that you're having. These are the types of organizations that I help. I help adults understand, how to tell stories effectively for fiction stories but I also can help nonfiction stories. These are the things that I will bring to the table, the skills, qualifications, experience. I have a background in journalism. I can help with understanding from a diversity lens. But I also can dissect the stories and teach story structure to help people create more powerful stories that connect with diverse audiences. Then as a result, you'll have people who are able to tell stories that compel and connect more effectively from that as she started to craft that message and change her LinkedIn.

She realized that people were attracted to the diversity lens and actually asked her if she could do diversity training within their organizations for storytellers, so organizations that worked in storytelling said, "hey, can you come in and do diversity training for these storytellers to help them craft more well-rounded ethnically diverse characters" and she said, "okay, I've never done this before". These are the skills, qualifications, and experience that I bring to the table. These are the gaps that I currently have. This is how I'm planning on filling out those gaps. I can create really good diversity training around storytelling for you. Those organizations accepted that and gave her first $ 8,000 contract.

So, now she started to branch out into becoming more entrepreneurial and freelancing. While she was doing that, we also worked on her doing book coaching, so people who wanted to craft beginning to end holistic nonfiction stories who had true stories like mine that are diverse that are coming from different lenses that are underrepresented in the publishing industry. She had a voice and a listening ear that was very receptive and easier to work with and so, we said, you can be a book coach for these diverse voices and then she started pitching yourself to get one on one clients to help them craft books from beginning to end, including the marketing process, is that help?

Jeff Altman 30:11
That's fabulous. Because one of the things folks, I want you to hear is that Jette has coached someone in a nonlinear way. This is not simply about, I'm going to get a job, I'm going to work hard in the next 20 years. I'm going to work my way up the ladder. That part of the world doesn't exist anymore and the sooner some of you realize that the better off you are. Jette started off with, let's get some basic income for you and from there, let's start expanding upon that and see what you really bring to the table beyond simply the job. The thing we are being hired for, by big daddy or big mommy Corporation and let's see if we can incorporate all your skills and talents and how in marketing herself.

I know I'm doing pretty well so far. She said she wound up with an opportunity for a diversity and inclusion assignment with a firm that wanted to have more inclusive characters and stories. Then from there that led to training then lead to other things and as a result, we haven't heard about what how long she stayed in that job and she may have been able to stay on that job while she was doing all this stuff. But you are more than just simply the job that you're hired to do. You're a whole human being that has lots of talents and experiences that firms tend to ignore because they just need the square peg for the square hole.

Jette Stubbs 31:55
Absolutely and for her, she is still working in that book coaching space. She's been expanding and growing her business. She's gotten more training contracts. She's had more one on one clients work with her. She's also maintained a part time role teaching as a faculty and that was one of the first roles that she landed before that she had never made more than $30 or something like that hour. In this role she actually negotiated so that she was making $100 an hour and it started with, I think when they posted the position, they would recommend 50 to 80 and she said, you know, my words just hit her as she was negotiating salary and she's like, no, I'm going to ask for 100 because I think that's what I'm worth and they said yes, on the spot. So, these opportunities can happen.

And you can make more money than you think you can by combining, what you love to do into a strategy to solve problems. So many people think you have to be a starving artist, if I pursue things that I like, I'm not going to be happy. They think, it's not the career of the century. But this is life. This is what everybody else is doing. How can I think that I can be different? Who am I to think that I can do this? And the truth is you can build out a structure. It's not something that you just listen to, for people that have done it on podcast. It's something that's a very practical process. But you have to allow yourself to learn the tools to follow the process, to figure out what you want, it's not as simple as going and taking a career test or personality test and saying this is what I should be doing. It's helpful insight into who you are and what you may potentially like. But there's so many careers that you've never heard of that are not on those tests and you need to build out a formula and a process for getting there.

Jeff Altman 33:37
Folks recognize that Jette was an instrumental ally on this story. Her client could not have done this on her own. She hadn't done it on her own, so much of what Jette described was the work of, what a coach does, in order to help a person, see things that they can't normally see on their own. So that with support, they can go off and explore some of the options, learn some things and eventually land in the happy job, the happy career. That's going to make all the difference in the world.

Jette Stubbs 34:18
Yes, exactly.

Jeff Altman 34:20
And I do with that summary.

Jette Stubbs 34:22
That was amazing. Your summaries are excellent. I need to work on summarizing as well.

Jeff Altman 34:30
What happened I asked you about yet that I should, that's something we should cover in our conversation.

Jette Stubbs 34:38
It depends on whether you want to cover this piece. When I started working, in my first 18 months, I experienced a lot of obstacles. So, discrimination at work, living in another country without any family in a new city, my mom being stabbed in a robbery and then....

Jeff Altman 34:53
Let's pause on that one for a second. Because you kind of ran that one pie. Could you say that one more time. Slowly, please. That's your mom.

Jette Stubbs 35:03
Okay. So, the first one was discrimination at work. My supervisor makes a buzzer noise anytime, I said something that sounded like I was for from a foreign country. I am from a foreign country. So, that was a lot of words. I was living alone and while I was living alone and working with this supervisor who was prejudice, my mom was stabbed 17 times in a robbery and lived, thankfully. But I had to go back home for about two weeks. So, I just left work. I sent a two-sentence email to my supervisor saying, I will need to work support from out of the country. I had a family emergency, please let me know if there's anything that came up and at this point, I had already been given substantial promotion opportunities. I was indirectly coordinating a team of four people. I was 22 years old working in an environment that was 25 to 30, were considered young people 25 to 30. Here I was 22 years old, indirectly leading this team of people, leading this office, leading some strategic direction for the initiative that I was a part of.

And I didn't know, how to talk about, what was going on at home, what had happened with my mom, what was going on with my family and I started to become quieter and quieter. I would be epic at getting my job done. But I'd be horrible at talking about myself and who I am as a person and I felt like maybe I should just try and separate the personal and the professional. Maybe I should just try and be two different people. One person at home, another person who's trying to navigate your professional life. But at this point, both were toxic and in a bad place because I had been experiencing discrimination at work. I had a lot of people questioning who I am and why I should be there at. I look young for my age now. But even then, I looked even younger for my age because this is now 10 years ago. So, when I walked into her room....

Jeff Altman 37:12
She talked about being a 22-year-old and has now said she's 10 years later.

Jette Stubbs 37:18
I just turned 31, nine years later.

Jeff Altman 37:21
Okay, 31 years old, so old now.

Jette Stubbs 37:27
So, I looked young. I looked really young, and I knew it. So, when I walked into meetings, sometimes I had people literally refuse to meet me, they said you cannot be the person for me to speak to build a partnership with this organization and going to work in experiencing that after experiencing discrimination from my initial supervisor and then going into meeting after meeting and experiencing conversations like that and then having to go home and then deal with that. It was just this environment where I started to fall apart. I started stress vomiting at work. My hair started to fall out it. I was falling apart like emotionally, mentally, physically and I needed to figure out, how to realign my career because I liked the type of work that I was doing.

But I didn't like the environment that I was working. I didn't like the way I was being treated and I didn't like that it didn't offer the flexibility to support my family or spend longer periods of time with my mom or go back and live back home for a while and I had to redesign my career and go back to my roots, so I started to even believe myself that will mean me this is just how life works. I had a good job. I had a pension. I was on the leadership path. I had been recruited on to the future leaders of the organization training program.

When I told people that I was thinking about leaving, they were like, but people wait so long to get this job and you got it so young and you're on a path for success and you can be making in to the six figures and you have educational support. So, you can continue your education and you can go to school during work and I'm like but I can't live the life that I want. I'm so stressed out at work that I'm not even eating properly. So, it like when is it worth it when you stop and say, I don't just need any job. I need something that aligns with who I am, where I'm at in my life situation and that's where I revisited and I opened back up, what I had done when I had 90 days to find a job or leave the country and I saw that I had written down, I don't want just any job. I want my happy career.

And along that timeframe, I had also had people coming to me during my lunch hours and after work and saying, "hey, can you review my resume, can you help me get this job" and then I help somebody get a $20,000 higher paying job opportunity like an interview, 10 days after I revise their resume and then they went on to get those jobs and I got to this point where people just insisted on paying me, they're like, I made an additional 20, 30, 40,000 $ a year based on your advice, and you haven't accepted any money from me. I need to pay you something. It's not right for me to walk away without paying you something because I'm going to continue to make this additional money every year and I said, "oh, you know, I'm helping a friend, a friend helping a friend, you don't need to pay me" and then they started to give me gift cards and I got to this place where I couldn't afford to pay a bill or help out with a medical bill. But I had this gift card was Amazon gift card sitting there. But this money that had to be given to Amazon, well, maybe I should just accept some money and maybe, I should start selling myself and telling people, I can do this for money if I want more flexibility.

Jeff Altman 40:55
And folks, just in case you had any doubt, she charges, I charge. We all charge. At the beginning, she was an amateur, she definitely has cards. She doesn't do that anymore. I've never done that before. I get paid for what I do because it's world class advice and world class support and just in case some of you thought maybe you could give me a gift card and that would be okay. It isn't. They want me to pay the real estate taxes on the house at the end of the year. They're not going to take a gift card.

Jette Stubbs 41:33
Exactly and what I realized is when you are helping people, people are happy to pay you, so many people think of selling yourself as being pushy, sleazy, or salesy and you know, you're afraid of being pushy or annoying and we all dread, you know, the best salesperson that we've hated speaking to that forced themselves on us and what I tend to tell my clients is when you go to your favorite restaurant and they hand you the menu, are you mad at the waiter for handing you the menu, so you could buy food. Like if you're being given something that's going to help you that's going to add value to your life that's going to help better your situation and get you to where you want to go. You're happy to make that transaction. Do you complain every time you pay for your Netflix subscription, are you happy and just see the money leaving your bank account as you continue to watch Netflix for 30, 40 hours a month?

So, it's more about, are you adding value that people want. You feel pushy or sleazy, you feel that person is pushy, sleazy, or annoying. If they're trying to sell you something you have no interest in. If you feel, they don't care about you as a person and they're not trying to better your life. That's bad sales. That's not good sales. That's not, what sales should be sales and selling yourself to an employer or to a client is really about saying, where do you want to go. Well, I will give you these tools and these steps that will help you get there that you will see a return on your investment whether that is emotional connection, whether that's perceived your status or whether it's what you and I do. Jeff and we actually help people make more money by getting better paying jobs or better paying opportunities.

Jeff Altman 43:09
This has been fun. How can people find out more about your work? Everything about you?

Jette Stubbs 43:16
So, I have a podcast, "Happy Career Formula with Jette Stubbs" and you can find me at where you can actually....

Jeff Altman 43:25

Jette Stubbs 43:26
Yes and you can find me there. You can book a consultation, call with me and those are the two main places. My podcast, if you want to learn more about the desire skill demand framework, check out episode two, we're actually talking about that in detail for about 30 to 45 minutes and then I walk through the five steps to selling yourself in episode three where I take you straight from no idea. The top three mistakes that people make there and then how to get to proper systems to sell yourself and systems apply whether you are creating a system so people can find you on LinkedIn because you should be continuing to look for jobs even when you have a job and those systems apply to business as well so you can attract new clients.

Jeff Altman 44:16
Thank you and folks, we'll be back soon with more on Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter. Visit my website, There's a ton there in the blog that you can watch, listen, to read, that will help you. Plus, you can also schedule a free discovery call or schedule time for coaching. You know, I'd like to help you folks, so you don't have to suffer through my bad job search or career transition. In addition, connect with me on, mention that you saw the show because I like knowing where people come to me from and subscribe to my channel on YouTube and you can find that a job search or new TikTok. I'm doing video on TikTok, Jeff, The Big Game Hunter. Follow me there. I'd love to help you and by the way, one last thing I have been forgetting to mention, I do a Friday show called career coach office hours. If you've got a question for me, email me in the subject line, put the phrase, office hours or career coach office hours. I'd love to answer your questions. Have a terrific day and most importantly, be great. Tak


JeffAltman, The Big Game Hunter
JeffAltman, The Big Game Hunter

Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter is a coach who worked as a recruiter for what seems like one hundred years. His work involves career coaching, as well as executive job search coaching, job coaching, and interview coaching. He is the host of “No BS Job Search Advice Radio,” the #1 podcast in iTunes for job search with more than 2200 episodes.

Are you interested in 1:1 coaching, interview coaching, advice about networking more effectively, how to negotiate your offer or leadership coaching? Schedule a discovery call at my website,

Learn to interview like a pro. “The Ultimate Job Interview Framework” Kindle and print versions are available on Amazon.

Classes On Skillshare

Connect with me on LinkedIn Mention you listen to the podcast or watch my YouTube channel.

I have a lot more about LinkedIn in my YouTube playlist


We grant permission for this post and others to be used on your website as long as a backlink is included and notice is provided that it is provided by Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter as an author or creator.



About the author

Leave a Comment, Thought, Opinion. Speak like you're speaking with someone you love.

%d bloggers like this: