How to Make a Career Leap - Misha Rubin

career Jun 24, 2021
Mark Struczewski, Misha Rubin

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Misha Rubin developed The Career Leap method and provides career transformation programs for competent unfulfilled professionals to discover meaningful fulfilling careers that work for their lives.

His website

UNEDITED TRANSCRIPT

Mark Struczewski
Misha Rubin developed The Career Leap method and provides career transformation programs for competent, unfulfilled professionals to discover meaningful, fulfilling careers that work for their lives. Misha, welcome to the show.

Misha Rubin
Hello, Mark, it's so great to be with you.

Mark Struczewski
I am thrilled you're here. And I really love the part that you talk about competent, unfulfilled professionals. Because a lot of smart people out there aren't doing what they love to do with their life, right? That's for sure. And I used to be one of them. So I know the territory really, really well. I love that, you know, I have the saying, I've been saying for years when I became a productivity expert, you cannot be your most productive self until you're doing what you love, where you love to do it. And it sounds like you agree with that? Yes. And I will add where you do it is way more important than what that's what I got to realize. Yes, I have talked to people, some clients, some people on social media that say I like my job, but I don't like my boss. I'm like, Is that the only place you can work? Well, no. Well, why don't you go someplace else and work for a boss you like, it's not that hard. But before we get into the nitty-gritty, why don't you tell us a little bit about who Misha is? And how did you come up with the career leap method?

Misha Rubin
Awesome. So you know, I've been an inquiry about meaningful and fulfilling career for a long time, because for many years, and I can tell you, I tried it all, you know, I, I tried. jumping from job to job every two years, I try taking a year off, and figuring out my passion. And I'm using the parentheses, quotes for PR for passion. I tried staying with one organization, and for 15 years, and I became a partner at the Big Four consulting firm. And even when that happened, I still was left with a feeling that this is not it. And more. So I'm kind of like just wasting my life away. And I really couldn't stand it. So there was this particular moment that I talked about, I'm sitting in an office like a real office before quarantine with walls and whiteboards and people in it. And at that time, I was 15 years with Ernst and Young, I was a partner for five years, I had more success than I could have imagined as an immigrant coming to the United States. And I was a competent, unfulfilled professional. So I'm sitting at that meeting, and we are discussing the next service offering to our clients, which are majorly large banks. And everybody's talking and I hear myself speak. And then I hear my quiet voice. And it tells me, this is not aligned with who you are anymore. You're not going to do this anymore. And that was my moment of truth. It was a terrifying moment. Because listen, I'm a breadwinner. I have three small children, I didn't have a very good idea what I would be doing. But it was a moment of truth where I knew that I'm not going to tolerate what I call Korea mediocrity. I'm not going to tolerate the status quo. And at that time, I didn't know that in six months, I will develop the career lead method, I will start teaching that I'll be here on the podcast with you talking about it. I didn't know any of that. But that was the defining moment for me.

Mark Struczewski
Wow, that's fascinating. You know, my dad retired when he was 55. He worked at a steel factory for like 3035 years. I worked there for nine years when I went to college in another lifetime back in the 80s and 90s. And I'm like I was pulling my hair out. I'm bald now voluntarily bald, but I'm like, Oh my god, sir. People work in this company for 50, 60 years. Are you kidding me? You come and do the same job for 50 years. Now. Some people may like that, but I'm like you, I like novelty in like what I do. Every client is different. Every social media post is different. Every online training is different. I like change. I like novelty, but some people like doing the same thing. And there's nothing wrong with that as long as they're fulfilled. Right?

Misha Rubin
Well, I would say there are several things. One thing that as humans we are not being educated on how to look for careers and what we're there to do. We educated on millions of other topics, but not about this one. So that's number one. The second thing I think the generation of your dad and maybe my dad, they might have not had all the possibilities that we have now. I think we really live In unprecedented times, and let me really define this, how like we live in a super special time that nobody ever had before. So number one, post-pandemic, most employers are open to remote work. So in the past, for professionals, the geographic constraints were in place right now for, let's say, a lot of them are gone, maybe not all of them. So that was number one. Number two, our society is going through a major transformation. Part of it comes with definitely pain. But during major social transformation, there are incredible business opportunities, because the businesses are transforming new industries are transforming new businesses are created. So that's number two. Number three, there has never been an easier time to start a business. Yep. I don't know what people did 30 years ago. But when I came up with a career leap idea, I literally created a website in an hour, put a posting on Facebook and LinkedIn, and I got my first free students, three of them, right. I'm not saying it's easy to run a business but to start and explore a business idea. And if it's not for you, for somebody else, it just the businesses are popping up. And number four, unprecedented access to learning who had that, like, we can go and learn anything, you can take a program, in an Ivy League college, you can finish your MBA sitting on your couch, you can, you know, take Coursera courses, the I don't know there is if you want to learn to acquire skill, nobody had this opportunity that we did. So when so that's why I would like to separate like what happened to our parents, you know what happened even to us in our lifetime. But the opportunity of now is just incredible.

Mark Struczewski
And you know, in this time we're living in, you know, this is June 24, 2021. A lot of jobs that we didn't think would do remote are remote. However, there are still some jobs that will never be remote, like my father was a machinist really difficult to have a warehouse in your backyard and make parts. I don't want my doctor to be remote, although that's certainly part of it. But when I have like, say I have an accident or at home, I don't want a video doctor, okay, I want him actually working on me. So we're all not going to be able to work remotely. But I think what really surprised people with COVID is a lot of jobs, people thought this will never work remotely. Now they work remotely and it's working out. So I think people need to have open minds and don't say, this is just an office job. Think about it. I mean, my wife, for example, sells cruises for a living, and the building that they're housed in, the company owns it. And it's really difficult for a company that owns a building to let the people work remotely. But because of COVID, now they're going Hmm, maybe we'll allow people to work home part of the time because all you have to do is have fast internet, and cause the phone calls to come over VoIP. And now they're even experimenting with this, even though they own the building. Because if you don't, if you don't fulfill all the floors, then you can actually like shut the AC off or pay less insurance or something like that. So I think this COVID thing is really opening people's minds, like you said, about Hmm, what can we do remotely?

Misha Rubin
Yeah, so I was talking like, if you think about the opportunity, I agree that not everything will be remote, but the opportunity to with remote work opening up is incredible. So I think the good question to ask is, well, how come? I'm not pursuing it? You know, if I were listening to this, like, Well, clearly the opportunities and that's really a big question that I when I go on podcasts or talk to people, I would like them to wake up to the possibility I would like them to see. It's the possibilities are great. And there are probably there is some type of a roadblock in thinking about those stopping people to participate in this opportunity.

Mark Struczewski
I remember a couple of years ago, I really like Mark Cuban, he's a billionaire. He owns the MBA Dallas Mavericks. And I remember seeing him do a presentation to a bunch of students. And at the end, he asked a really simple question. Who's next? In other words, are you just gonna sit there and go, Oh, Mark Cuban, you're so amazing? Or you're going to step up to the plate and take hold of the tremendous opportunity out there. And sadly, Misha I see a lot of people They're just like, well, I don't know. And I think it has a mindset issue they go, I don't know, who am I, you know, look at, you're never gonna know unless you try. You already mentioned, there is so much education out there, there is no reason why you can't keep your job and start building your side hustle. But if you don't try, you may live with regret. When you get towards your, you know, your later years and go man, I should have tried that. Now is the time, no more excuses. If you want to try something, go learn and go try it. And even if you fail, at least you can say, Listen, I tried it, it didn't work out. I think that's better than never trying at all.

Misha Rubin
Absolutely. But I think a lot of people, and that's where I also know myself, space where I was, like, if I knew what I was there to do, I would go do it. And where my stuckness came from, I really didn't have an idea of what that thing should be. So I think there is one aspect of that. And that's, that's what really inspired me to develop the career leap method. So when people are not clear about what they want to do that there is a systematic approach to thinking to the inquiry about what they could be doing in life. And the way I'm thinking about that we all have very unique qualities, abilities, and things about us that are not expressed in language. So I work with people and I inspire them to develop their unique career criteria. So once you have criteria, then you can actually measure you can look at industries or organization, or leaders or you can look at business ideas, or you can look at careers or different work arrangements and evaluate them whether they are the right thing for you. So I think a lot of people missing kind of the starting point. And that leaves them with like, well, I just don't know what I want to do. I'm really not fulfilled here. But I have no idea. What's my next step? So that's number one, I would say that's number one thing. So that's number two like there are several roadblocks and people's minds that I can talk about because they are pretty consistent because I speak a lot to a lot of people about their careers. So one of them is like, I'm too old. It's so interesting that I was talking to a prospective student of mine. She just finished her program and create a beautiful career leap. And she said, Well, I'm just too old, you know like she's in her 40s. I'm just too old. And then she started laughing. Because she said, Oh, you know when I was in my 20s and I immigrated to the United States, I told myself the same thing that I'm too old. So the funny thing, I recently had a 72-year-old surgeon join my program. Why? Because he knows that probably you won't be able to stay a surgeon for the rest of his career. But he wants to do what's next for him, he is excited about it. So people that think that you're too old. Think about what you would tell yourself now 10 years from now, and that you will laugh at yourself that you're too old.

Mark Struczewski
You know, it's I just want to interject real quick. Just yesterday, I wrote a blog post on my site about I wish I could slow downtime. And what I wrote in there is this past Monday, I celebrated my 56th birthday. My goal is to make at least 100. And I want to live these next 44 years, better than I live the first 56 I really enjoyed the first 56 years of my life. But my problem was, I was always in a hurry. I wasn't fully present, I didn't enjoy the moment I did enjoy the conversation the people are with. So I am committing to myself, that I'm really going to enjoy life. The last 44 not the last, I may live 220 I don't know. But the next 44 years at least I make 100 I want to live 100% fully committed I think when you get into the hustle and bustle of your job and your family and your hobbies, life just goes so fast. And I wish I could slow it down because I have never enjoyed life more than I am right now.

Misha Rubin
That's awesome. That's an amazing mindset so so I think that's fundamentally the mindset defines everything right? So with a mindset like yours, then you'll be like, well, if I want to live my the next 44 or whatever years I have, like what do I need to do? Like I better have a great career because that's probably people spent most of their life working. That's what they don't realize. So they not happy in their career that kind of skews their whole life experience. So I think the mindset and then the other thing that happens in mindset, what stops people is certain conversations that they have about themselves, right? So we talked about I'm too old, but then people Like, I'm just not skilled enough, you know, I don't have the right skills, and they don't realize that, well, skills are actually on the bottom pyramid of the pyramid of what you have how you look for your career, because skills are like clothes, you know, they go out of fashion, and they get young now. And if you really need new clothes, you'll go to a store and buy new clothes, right? So skills are exactly like that. And especially the time that we living in these skills get outdated, regardless of what it is you're currently doing. So you would need to be picking up new skills, whether you like it or not, for them for the rest of your career. So don't let that you don't think that your skills are relevant, because actually, what's more, important is skills or your experiences. And experiences are much more transferable than we give them credit to because if you were designing something, or managing something, or building something, or growing something in one area, you completely can move industries and completely move careers. And you can actually articulate, you know, your strengths in those areas, but based on the experiences are not skills.

Mark Struczewski
I love what you said about skills because when I started my podcast back in 2017, I actually went to Google and typed in, how do I start a podcast? So the information's out there, but you got to want to go out and look for the information. Which brings me to the question I really am interested in hearing you answer. Why don't people seek fulfillment?

Misha Rubin
I think there are several reasons why they don't know where it is. So they don't know how to look for it. The thing that it's unattainable like they think there's a lot of conversation in our society that having a meaningful fulfilling job is some type of a pipe dream. And underneath that, I think the biggest fear that people don't think they will make enough money, they actually think they like, I would like to do this, but I don't think I would make enough money. So, but they forget that, first of all, they don't look in the whole spectrum of what's possible. So that's where I think having a method of how to look for things, and how to examine because a lot of people you know, like, you know, you choose your career, right? You invest into some type of what you study in school, the university more into your skills, and your first job and your second job, right you do people teach you to do practical things that you need. And I want to be clear, I'm not against practical things. I'm all for practical things. But then you know, you get married, you have children, you have a mortgage, you have all these responsibilities, suddenly, it's even harder. So your fulfillment becomes not even your priority right now, your priority right now to feed your family and raise your children. So if you don't think that it's possible, because you won't be able to sustain your lifestyle, then you just give it up. So I would say several things. One thing is people are not looking at the old spectrum, what's possible. So when I described the unprecedented opportunities of now, I bet people not examining about all the places and I thought they could make money where they could sustain their living, they not looking there. And the second thing is they don't evaluate the impact of them staying unfulfilled. That's like a really confronting conversation because people just don't want to look in the eyes of that unfulfillment. Like what is the impact on you? Like how your job actually sucks the soul out of you? In fact, you know, and I had a great job. And I work for a great company. But only when I left it, I could examine, like, Oh my god, what I like how I had to twist myself and what I had to do and what actually was happening to my soul when I was there. And the other big impact that people underestimate is the impact on children. Because children don't do what we tell them to do. Children inherit the blueprint of living, of how we live our lives. So if you have a job that sucks, what do you think your kids learning from you? They learning that that's normal that they also need to suck it up. They also need to suffer to me sustain their families. So I would say that to me, like one of the biggest thing drivers for me was like, it's not like I could, explaining to my kids what I do is why I do it. Right? That was a terrifying thing for me. So I think looking so if somebody wants to awaken right, is that how you're like, really be honest about the impact. Don't color code and look at the impact on you. Look at the impact on people around you. Look at the people on Look at your children. Look at what the world is not getting by, you're not fulfilling your mission Are you not using your talents to something meaningful to if you're not making the difference that you know you couldn't shoot, like, really look at the impact. Get terrified because it's really terrifying.

Mark Struczewski
When I was fired from my corporate job back in July 2005, I hated the job. But it was a job. And I look at it I wasn't happy at the time I got fired. But it didn't take me too long afterward to realize it was mama bird that kicked me out of the nest. And had I not gotten fired? Would I still be there? Michelle terrifies me to think about that. Because I love what I'm doing now. And I think people need to really take a moment and put down their phone, turn off the TV and just think about are you feeling fulfilled? Or are you going through the motions? Cuz I think people are always on social media, they're always checking the news. always watch the TV. They don't have they don't take time to go. Am I really fulfilled? Am I happy? Do I like what I'm doing? And I think if people do that, I think they would probably start getting moving in the right direction. Would you agree?

Misha Rubin
Well, that's the first step. Right. So the first step is to ask yourself a question, then what I say you need to confront your career mediocrity. So if you're like, you really need to confront it, and confronting it looks like this. You might not have an answer to what it is you want to do. You might have responsibilities to other people in life, you might have some other circumstances and you are not willing to live an unfulfilled life. And you will look to define. That's what confronting career mediocrity means.

Mark Struczewski
Career mediocrity, I love that phrase. And if we could just help one person, we probably help more. But if we just help one person, I consider the win. And I really appreciate how you broke it down really simply. I mean, I didn't have to tell you to make it really simple. Because I know, when people are listening to this show, they're probably out walking their dogs or out on the run or on an airplane. And they're just listening. And I like giving people you know, very useful, simple and simple information they could use. So is there anything that we didn't talk about in the show that's on your heart that you want to share with the listener?

Misha Rubin
So maybe a few things I want to talk about maybe like the three pillars of the Korea leap. So, people, a little bit understand how the method works. And then I'll give you a literally right now I'm giving to the listeners the ingredients of how to make this leap, how to start thinking about their leap, right? So the first I would say the pillar or the secret of the career leap is having a unique career criterion. So that's really understanding what drives your sense of meaning and fulfillment, what are your ingredients for success? How are you being motivated? What is your interaction profile with other people? What are your non-negotiables and that could actually get you on a journey to start thinking, what business problems I am interested in solving. What industries I might be interested in. Maybe there is some calling of something I always wanted to do create a list of these things start looking and exploring and examining and seeing with the criteria. So that's number one. The second big piece is so how do I know if I know what it is I want, right? So and I know who I am, I know what I want? How do I communicate this to the world? And that's where there are three principles of impactful communication, being authentic, meaning being true to who you are being relevant, meaning that you talk into the listening of the other human and the third is being transparent. There is nothing hidden about what you know what you don't know your experience that you're fully transparent. And if you can apply those principles to how you communicate in the career space to your resume, to your cover letters to how you seek mentors. How do you go to an interview and talk about yourself? That's really a breakthrough in how you want the world to see you and how you can become very attractive For another organization that shares your values, that shared needs, your talents, how they can interact with you. And the third pillar is the mindset, right? So the mindset is, where are we talking about? beliefs, right? So, as humans, we develop beliefs, and we treat our beliefs as the truth. So we talked a little bit about being too old or not having enough skills, what the problem is not that we think that we have evidence for all these things is the problem that we relate to our beliefs as the truth, as if nobody in your age changed career or nobody with your skills, you know, didn't make it in life and some other careers as if there nobody actually found a fulfilling job and made enough money to support their family. This is where I teach my students to become masters in dismantling their disempowering beliefs. So these are the three ingredients, right, knowing who you are, and where you go, know how to articulate this to the world, so the world can actually listen to embrace it, and dismantle disempowering beliefs, and have the clearest mindset to follow your dreams to be empowered. So my mission in life is to create is to fill the world with an empowered, impactful human. So that somebody who knows who they are, and live their lives and do their work in alignment with their values, is somebody who is not afraid to initiate a change. It's somebody who makes the type of difference. They know they could and should be making in life. And then their kids are proud of what they do. So they setting an amazing example for kids to live a purposeful life. So that's basically what I'm after, to let people be that in life and do some great things.

Mark Struczewski
Man, that's powerful, powerful insights, I am so thankful you are on the show today. So work in the listener go to find out more about you and what you're doing in the world.

Misha Rubin
Awesome. So you can always go to Misha ruben.com. Or if you're ready to jump to your career leap. So you go to thecareerleap.com. This is a website about my program. And one also thing, Mark, I wanted to mention that I'm about to kick off my pilot program for students. So because for high school and college students because they think that's the right time to ask yourself this question. So if you are a student or you're a parent of a student, on Monday, June 28, I'm kicking off my very first student program.

Mark Struczewski
Wow. See, that's why you should always listen to the entire episode listener because we recorded this yesterday. Today's June 24. His thing is coming up on Monday, see if you listen to us a week from now two weeks from now, you miss the currency of it. So that's awesome. Misha, thank you so much for being on the show today. Absolutely. thrilled to have you here.

Misha Rubin
Mark. It was truly a pleasure. Thank you.

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