Humans At Work with Michael Glazer

#46: Essential Skills for Your Career

Mark Herschberg, CTO, MIT instructor and author of The Career Toolkit, Essential Skills for Success That No One Taught You, joins me to talk about career planning, interviewing, networking, leadership, trust-building and other skills we need to build successful careers. This episode is packed with real-world examples and practical tips for workers, companies and educators alike.


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Episode Transcript

Mark Herschberg  00:00

Imagine if your manager said to you, I have a vitally important project, this is going to make or break the company. It's a two year long project. And this is going to determine success or failure. Would you then say, okay, got it, here's what I'm going to do. I'm going to wing it. I'm not going to create a project plan, I'm not going to create a timeline not can create a budget, no milestones, I'm just going to go day by day. And hopefully we get there. Right? You'd be fired on the spot. And yet, our careers, that really important project that determines our success or failure, we say, Oh, God, two years, five years, oh, my god, so big and far in the future. Forget, I'm just gonna wing it. I'm not gonna bother planning. Right, and that leads us into trouble.


Michael Glazer  00:51

Welcome to humans at work. I'm your host, Michael Glazer. My life purpose is to make well being at work a globally accepted basic human right. And this podcast helps by giving you fresh perspectives and actionable ideas for making working with other humans better for everyone. Thank you so much for tuning in. If you like what you hear, please subscribe and rate our show. And you can read the entire transcript for this show at 

In this episode, I'm talking with Mark Hirschberg about his book, The Career Toolkit, Essential Skills for Success that no one taught you, and how you can apply the principles and techniques in his book to help you in your own career. Now a little about Mark, he's spent his career launching and developing new ventures at startups and Fortune 500 companies alike. He also helped to start the undergraduate practice opportunities program at his alma mater, MIT. And he also helped the Harvard Business School create a platform for teaching finance at prominent business school. So Mark, thank you for sitting down with me today. And welcome to humans at work.


Mark Herschberg  01:59

Thanks for having me on the show. I'm excited to share some tips and techniques with your audience.


Michael Glazer  02:03

Well, I want to get to that. But before that, let's talk about background a little bit because you have a really interesting background, both as a CTO a lot of experience in software and startup companies. And you're also a career educator at MIT. So what's the link between these two? And how do they lead you to write the career toolkit?


Mark Herschberg  02:23

It's a little bit random, and certainly unexpected. In my original career plan. I graduated MIT in the 90s with a bunch of technical degrees, and started as a software developer, I quickly realized I wanted to become a CTO Chief Technology Officer. But to get that job, it wasn't just about being the best engineer, yes, I had to have strong technical skills. But to be a CTO, I need other skills like leadership, communication, team building negotiations. No one ever taught this, to me, that's not in a standard college program. So I had to develop the skills in myself. And as I did, so I realized these skills are not just for the executive team, only, they help everyone down to the most junior person down to even the brand new college grads, they benefit from having these skills. So I began to train up my team.

And shortly after MIT had gotten feedback from companies, they survey, asking what skills they're looking for. And those were skills like leadership, communication team building all these skills. So MIT said, Well, you know if this is what companies want, and by the way, they don't just want this for MIT alums or MIT students, these are universal skills they want everyone. MIT said, we better do something about this, and created what's now referred to as the Career Success accelerator. When I heard about this, I reached out, I said, I've been working on this case, share some level, I've been doing this and yes, please. So I helped them create the program. And they've been teaching there for the past 20 years, and now the book and the speaking and other activities. So I've had this dual career for the past few decades.


Michael Glazer  03:57

So before we get into the book, I want to ask you a few questions about the career success accelerator. So much has changed in the in the workplace and in the job market over the last couple of years. Have you seen that have an impact on the curriculum of the of the accelerator?


Mark Herschberg  04:13

Not really, because these skills are so fundamental and universal, they're going to help you no matter your industry, even as things evolve and change. They still apply. So not many changes to the content.


Michael Glazer  04:28

And how about feedback that you're receiving? Or MIT's receiving from these companies that are hiring MIT grads? Are the students themselves who are going through this? What are they saying is important to them or makes a big difference in getting to where they want to go next in their careers?


Mark Herschberg  04:43

The students love it. And the companies love it. We have certain big name companies that we partner with, who explicitly hold open a number of internship slots for our students because they know students coming through our program, bring these extra skills They can't find as easily elsewhere.


Michael Glazer  05:02

Well, with that, let's turn to the book. And the book is it's organized into three sections career, leadership and management and interpersonal dynamics. And I was intrigued by the subtitle of the book, what you mentioned are the essential skills for success that nobody taught you. I know MIT is doing it. But why is it that so many of the topics that you mentioned, aren't formally taught in schools,


Mark Herschberg  05:27

There are different reasons for college and high school level, let's look at college level, the colleges are run by professors. I love professors, I work with them. But the problem with professors is they are deep experts in a particular area. So if we think about marketing, if I say, oh, I want a major in marketing, what happens? A bunch of professors who have PhDs in marketing who say, we really understand this field, they've decided, well, if you want to major in marketing, here are the hoops, you have to jump through.

So many intro classes, some intermediate ones, for some breath, and then maybe a little bit of depth and some particular area. And they say, if you do all this, plus maybe some general classes that the university throws in, but if you do all this, we have decided you get designated with a bachelor's in marketing. But what is that degree really saying? It's not saying you are a good marketer, it's not saying you're a good employee, it simply says you have achieved a certain level of knowledge in marketing. And that was sufficient, certainly 200 years ago, even 100 years ago, when we had this big hierarchical corporate systems, and you sat at your desk, and you were a cog in the machine and just had to do your mechanical function, accounting, marketing, engineering.

But as the world has evolved, as we've gotten to flatter organizations, and more teams that are multidisciplinary, as we expect people not just to be cogs. But to take initiative. No longer do you just need the mechanical knowledge of your particular discipline. But these other skills, but unfortunately, the university system, because it's so old, it moves very slowly, and they have not caught up to the changes in the workplace.


Michael Glazer  07:13

So those gaps actually create an opportunity for people like you who are committed to helping people build their careers.


Mark Herschberg  07:21

Very much. So although I would love to see that gap disappear. I want the educational system to do this, and put me out of business.


Michael Glazer  07:29

So do you have a piece of advice for university leaders to help put you out of business?


Mark Herschberg  07:36

Start by talking to your customers. Now, one set of customers, the direct customers might be the students or parents, the people writing the checks. But really the ultimate end customer, those are the companies that are hiring your graduates. They're the ones who assign value to your work, the education you provide, talk to them, find out what they want. And then like any business work to address their needs.


Michael Glazer  08:05

So let's step a little bit further into hiring because there is so much hiring going on right now, when we're recording this in November of 2021. I read report after report about companies just scrambling to get good talent into the companies. What can hiring managers do to maximize the chances of making great hires?


Mark Herschberg  08:26

There are a number of things you can do first, understand, we are going through a big change right now, in terms of that employer contract, we think about how 100 years ago, there was that concept of lifetime employment. Now it wasn't as widespread as most people think it's a little bit of a myth. But still, there's the understanding of, you know, welcome young man to the company, and we're going to help grow you over a number of years. And that was our saying, I'm going to work for you and you're going to help develop me and I'll move up the ladder. That obviously changed. Now, layoffs became common in the 80s. And that social contract change.

But I think it's changing again, in that people. It's not just from the Great Recession, we saw themes of this, even prior, people are no longer just looking for a paycheck, they want more that can mean social mission, that can mean the impact they're having on the world. It can also mean what they're getting from the company in terms of challenge or development, or even corporate culture.

And so if you're just looking for people and saying, if you do this job, I'm gonna give you this money that is not as appealing as it used to be. And you're gonna have to recognize this changing dynamic. The second thing you need to do is not just look for the root mechanical skills for that job, but look at the more subtle skills like teamwork and leadership and communication what that means to this role and hire for that as much as for some particular knowledge or experience in the discipline.


Michael Glazer  09:57

And so how, how does this train translate into what people can do during the interview process and the evaluation of candidates, whether it's teamwork, leadership communications.


Mark Herschberg  10:11

In Chapter Three of the book, I talk about this that chapters on interviewing a little bit from the canvas perspective, but mostly from the company's perspective. Here's the real irony. Most people have had zero training in how to interview and hire other people. I've talked to a lot of executives, and they said, Yeah, I've never been trained in how to hire by hired scores of people. So we need to begin by actually training people how to hire you'd never say, Okay, son, here are the car keys. You've seen me drive? Right? Alright, try not to have an accident. But that's what we do with our employees if you've been injured before. All right, go for it.

So we need to be more conscientious. And it goes to how to ask the right questions, but also goes through, as I said, understanding what it is you want. So here's a very common example. I see in so many job descriptions, strong communication skills. Alright, that seems like a good thing. But what does that mean? Does that mean you can stand on a TED stage and give this incredible? Well rehearse, talk? Does that mean you're good at writing really concise emails? Does that mean you're good talking to the customer? Or maybe explaining very complex ideas to people who don't have the domain knowledge?

Those are all different types of communication, they're not all equally important. So let's be very conscientious and understanding. What do we want? When we say communication skills? Or leadership skills? Are many of these other less tangible skills other than, do you know, accounting? Or can you write Python code? Let's understand what we want? And how to uncover if the candidate has that?


Michael Glazer  11:47

Yeah, can you say a few words about how to uncover whether or not the candidate has that because I think this is where a lot of interviewers get tripped up.


Mark Herschberg  11:56

It comes down to understanding the different types of interview questions. And I go through this in the book, and being very conscientious if, for example, you want someone who is good at explaining complex ideas to people outside of your discipline. So this is very common in my hiring, when I hire engineers, some of them better be able to explain it to the marketing people. Well, one way to assess that is I have a marketing person there, I say, tell me about some really technical project. Okay, now tell it to this marketing person, I've done enough that I can ask him say give it to me as a CTO, now give me the marketing version of that. And I can compare it. But you can explicitly look for those things. But you have to be conscious and not just say, well, she seemed to speak well, so I guess she's a good communicator check.


Michael Glazer  12:42

Yeah. How about the flip side of this for candidates who are going into these interviews? What do you suggest they think about they do in order to both prepare and then perform well during the interviews?


Mark Herschberg  12:57

Certainly by understanding how the hiring managers think you are so much better off. In fact, I really talk in some of the speeches I do in the training that I give, I talk about interviewing from a sales perspective, this is actually true for both sides as a candidate, I am selling myself to you to meet your need. I might sell a car to meet your transportation need or food to meet your hunger need, I'm selling me to meet your CTO need. Likewise, you as a hiring manager, are selling this position to me to meet my employment need. So we all need to think a little like salespeople and incorporating some sales and marketing techniques actually helped us on both sides to be better in this process.


Michael Glazer  13:46

One of the things that helps us get to that interviewing chair to begin with is not just the strength of our resume, which I guess that's a whole separate podcast episode. But also networking, which is a skill and a tactic. You cover it in the book. I mean, they can help us short term get a job longer term help us build a career. From your experience. What are some of the do's and don'ts when it comes to professional networking?


Mark Herschberg  14:13

Most people screw up networking because they have a terrible mental model of how it should work. When you ask someone what is networking or what's a good networker, we go to that almost Hollywood view of some guy who walks into some event, and he comes back 30 minutes later with 20 business cards. Oh, wow, what a great networker. Look, all the people he met. But here's the thing saying that you got someone's business card and they're on your network, or, Hey, I just add this person on LinkedIn. She's now in my network.

Well, that's like saying I just swipe right on her on Tinder. And now she's my girlfriend. Right? We would never do that. We never say look on the dating app. We both match. This is my new girlfriend. My friends say Mark you're insane. Right? That's what that is not a girlfriend. That's Someone who expressed a little interest but if you want to be your girlfriend, what do you have to do, you have to start dating her, you have to develop that relationship. So just because you get someone's card, or they add you on LinkedIn, they're not in your network, they've expressed some interest. But now you have to develop that relationship. It's not dating, but it is similar getting to know each other. And so the first thing we have to do is shift our mentality from I'm just collecting cards or look at the number of followers on social media channel, to I want to develop relationships with different people. And that takes time. So it's shifting to a long term approach.


Michael Glazer  15:37

And you talk about trust as being one of the main ingredients to making this happen, right?


Mark Herschberg  15:42

Absolutely. Think about the following. If you need to move this weekend, you got to pack up your apartment and move. And if you're not able to afford movers, so you got to ask some people to come help you. Who do you ask? And who will show up? Is it someone you just met at the bar two nights ago? Or is it someone you've known for the past 15 years? We all know it's the ladder, you develop that trust that relationship? So when you ask for help, who's more likely to give you help? Is it someone you just met the other day? Or is it someone you've known for a while?

Now we often see, oh, hey, Michael, great to meet you. I hear your company's hiring. Listen, can you pass along my resume, you might do that it doesn't really cost you much to hand in my resume. But you'll say to your boss, you know, here's some guy I met. He sounds like maybe he's qualified. I don't know, here's his resume, you decide. But if you've known me for last five years, you'd say, Hey, this is my buddy Mark, He is smart, he's very reliable, he's definitely worth taking a look at. And so that almost guarantees me in interviews, in fact, especially if my resume doesn't quite fit. You might say, Look, I know it's not quite on there. He's worth it. And so that's a much stronger connection that comes from that trust, and the value and strength of our relationship.


Michael Glazer  17:03

Yeah, absolutely. And I know, in my own experience, this type of thing happens regularly, where somebody I built a relationship with years ago, has a pinpoint need. But because we've been we've built trust over five or 10 or 15 years, at that point of need, I pop up in their minds. And that leads to some kind of mutual benefit for us or for organizations.


Mark Herschberg  17:27

If I remember, right, in Japan, where your base, there is a practice where the young hires would get sent out for a certain period, just to go. This isn't quite the right term almost party, but to socialize and meet other people to begin those relationships, not because something's gonna happen that day, but to start the relationship. So as they all wise in their careers, they have a network and people they've known for years, who they can call upon.


Michael Glazer  17:53

Yeah, the way. Organizational movements work in Japan is comparative compared to many countries in the West. It's much more orchestrated at a large scale. And so these these movements in Japanese, it's called the Edo. They're done with the intent of helping form a cohort of talents in different parts of the organizations at different strata in the organization. So over time, the strength of the relationship creates a very strong brocade of interpersonal relationships that can help the organization function and succeed.


Mark Herschberg  18:29

If I remember from like, go days, Ido is a term for a movement and go, but that makes sense the movements being orchestrated? Well,


Michael Glazer  18:38

we're talking about careers. And so sticking with this theme, what are the main ingredients as you see it in 2021, moving into 2022, into making a high quality career plan,


Mark Herschberg  18:52

the most important thing is to have one, so many people don't even do that. And here's the thing. Imagine if your manager said to you, I have a vitally important project, this is going to make or break the company. It's a two year long project. And this is going to determine success or failure. Would you then say, okay, got it. Here's what I'm going to do. I'm going to wing it. I'm not going to create a project plan, I'm not going to create a timeline not can create a budget, no milestones, I'm just going to go day by day. And hopefully we get there. Right? You'd be fired on the spot. And yet, our careers, that really important project that determines our success or failure, we say, Oh, God, two years, five years, oh, my god, so big and far in the future, forget, I'm just gonna wing it. I'm not gonna bother planning. Right. And that leads us into trouble.

So the key is to have a plan. Now what trips people up? It's saying, Well, how can I possibly know what things are going to be like in five years? Well, if we think about this two year project plan Do you know what things will be like in 18 months? You don't. But you create a plan. It's very clear upfront, you know what's happening next 30 days, what's happening five quarters out, you've got some placeholders. But that's okay. If it's not as detailed, you'll get to it and put in the details when you get closer. Likewise, we all know whenever you have a two year plan, no one would ever say, oh, it's gonna work out exactly as we think on day one. That's right. You're going to revise the plan, adjust it, the entire project might change. How many times has the board said, Guess what, we're getting rid of this division, or we're going in a different direction to go, Okay, well, scrap that Plan time for a new one.

But that's okay. But the key is that you have a plan and can adjust it as you go. We started this by talking about my career where I said, Oh, I'm going to be an engineer, and why No, I want to be a CTO. Nowhere. My plan was to teach for 20 years at MIT, and do all this stuff relating to careers. But along the way, this opportunity showed up and I said, Well, this is interesting. Let me think about what I want and potentially revise my plan. And that's how we need to approach it.


Michael Glazer  21:10

Yeah, it reminds me of the thing was Douglas MacArthur who said, you know, plans are worthless, but planning is indispensable.


Mark Herschberg  21:18

That was Eisenhower and Eisenhower.


Michael Glazer  21:22

But it sounds like that's it. It's what comes out of the planning process. The clarity, the intent, understanding what's important to you, where you want to point yourself is equally as important as having something down on paper or, or having a formal plan the document itself?


Mark Herschberg  21:41

That's exactly right. Don't worry about getting it perfect. You won't. But as you noted, from Eisenhower, that act of trying of working through it, that's what's going to help you succeed.


Michael Glazer  21:54

Now, in the book, you lay out some great questions, to give people input to get to lay down their plan, and their questions like, what are my goals in life? What would make me happy? What kind of impact do I want to have in my field? And these are great questions. And I think they're valuable questions. I also know that a lot of professionals I talked to regardless of where they are in their careers, they say, I'm not taking the time that I need to take to clarify these things. I mean, it pretty big questions. So from your own experience, what's, what's effective? To help people find answers to these questions? How do they spend their time when they actually take it and try to address what am I goals in life? Or what makes me happy in life?


Mark Herschberg  22:40

There are different ways you can approach it. And it really depends on just who you are, and how you like to approach these types of questions. One way is to put some reflection time on your calendar, I say to everyone, just create a calendar event, 30 minutes, twice a year, just a recurring event that says, think about my career plan. If you can't spend 30 minutes, twice a year, there is something wrong with your priorities. And for some people, it might be okay, during those 30 minutes, or hopefully even a little longer, you sit down and say, Let me think about these questions. Let me write down answers. You might even put into a journal, maybe you put into some online documents, you haven't even look back on it.

For other people, it might be what I call shower thoughts. They're the types of questions that you say, who I don't know what kind of impact do I want. But for the next week or so when you're in the shower, when you're waiting for the subway, when you have that kind of down dead time and your mind starts to wander, just have that question in there and see where it goes, and just start reflecting on it. And that's okay, too. So you can either tackle it directly. Or you can keep these in the back of your mind, you can think about when you have downtime, talk about with your colleagues. Next time you're out at lunch with your co workers ask them. Hey, Michael, what do you want to do? What kind of impact do you want to have in your field? And that may inspire me in terms of what I might want to do?


Michael Glazer  24:08

Yeah, it's a great point about the importance of both looking inside of ourselves, and then also looking to the outside.


Mark Herschberg  24:16

Yeah, and a lot of the work done here is done by engaging with other people. These are not things you have to do by yourself and give examples of how you can do that throughout the book.


Michael Glazer  24:27

And actually speaking of doing it with other people. I've heard you talk about the importance of not just reading the book and then figuring out what to do on your own. But taking the initiative to form discussion groups, because the discussion with others about all of the great things that are in the book actually helps propel people forward together.


Mark Herschberg  24:46

You're absolutely right now this is the key to how to develop these skills in yourself and in your organization. We traditionally have taught through the model of having the expert stand up front and project information. And we'd all sit there in school and scribble down our notes and memorize. And that's how I learned the quadratic equation. That's how I memorize the dates of the American Revolution. And that's fine for learning the quadratic equation and history dates. But I would like in these skills more towards learning a sport. Consider, for example, American basketball. You can't just say, I'm gonna sit you down for two hours explain basketball to you, and now perfect, you're ready to go. And yet, that's what we do to leaders, I'm going to send you to a leadership seminar for the afternoon, come back, aren't you a leader now? Like sports, this involves training and practice.

Now, it's not as easy to practice traditionally, I can't say everyone I'm going to lead for this afternoon. And then okay, yeah, that didn't work. Forget, pretend I didn't do any of that. Because that was really embarrassing. So we'll just call do over, it doesn't work.  But by creating these peer groups, a number of things happen, I recommend peer groups, around six to eight people. But there are ways you can do it with larger groups if you want. So you create these groups. Now first, you have a regular cadence, you come back to it, say every other week, because again, you can't just well, you took that leadership seminar three months ago, what more do you need to learn? No, we, we have to keep it top of mind.

Second, by having this discussion, we can get different ideas, I may hear your thoughts, which is different than mine different than someone else's. So I recommend you do is take some content. And yes, you can use my book if you want. But if you don't want to use my book, use a different book, use some online content, use a video an article, use a great podcast, like this one have ever listened to the podcast episode, and then get together and discuss it.  And if I say, well, this is what the book said about leadership, and I'm thinking of it this way. And well, what are your thoughts and you give me your thoughts and someone else because we are our thoughts. And then you might say, you know, I have this leadership challenge with my team. Here's what I'm thinking. And we all chime in with our thoughts. That's how we practice. That's how we can try to play leader practice being leader, or reflect on when you say, Hey, I did this last week, I thought it would go this way, but didn't. That's like watching the tape, which we know good athletes do. So these peer learning groups give you all this benefit to your own learning.  And here's what happens the organization, not only are you engaging your employees and giving them more than a paycheck, you are fostering relationships, helping your internal networking, you are also creating a common language.

If you all read, for example, the book Good to Great, you can say, oh hedgehog model, or so yes, hedgehog, I know exactly what that means. Because we all read the book, we know the reference. So you create this common language as well. So you get these incredible benefits by creating what's effectively a free training group within your organization.


Michael Glazer  27:55

You know, we're talking a little bit about leadership, management, sharing information. And it just reminds me of one of the chapters in your book about management. And you say that the cardinal failure of a rookie manager is the belief that the manager has to have all of the answers. And I completely agree with this. I'd like to know your thinking about why this is.


Mark Herschberg  28:18

I think it comes from our industrial revolution mentality, which of course, comes from the military mentality, there is a hierarchy and the people above give orders to the people below. And when we took that idea from the military into those industrial revolution groups, well, you were working on the assembly line. And so I would say, we need more screws turned or we need more hammering now. And you're just the the hams don't think, I think it was Henry Ford, who said the problem with every pair of hands is they come with a brain.

And so the managers for the brain, they'd tell people what to do, and everyone else was just supposed to do it. But in today's world, it's different. In today's world, the manager of a team isn't necessarily as competent in each task as the members of the team, you might have a Director of Marketing who's not as strong on social media marketing as a 25 year old. And so he's got to rely on what his 25 year old social media expert what she says they should do. And we need her to think and he has to say,

You know what, I don't know exactly what to do, but I can figure out the direction we need to go. And we can talk through your ideas just to make sure it doesn't sound way off base. I can give you some guidance, but I myself can't do it can't tell you exactly everything to do. And so with our cross functional teams with our teams where they're flatter, we've eliminated a lot of middle management last 50 years. It's no longer about my job is just to tell you what to do. It's we together need to achieve this goal.


Michael Glazer  29:53

And so what would you say to managers or potential managers who are saying, I'd like to take this job But if I take this management role, then I would be managing a team of people who have expertise well beyond, you know, my area of expertise.


Mark Herschberg  30:11

It depends on your needs and their needs. I would not say, for example, that an accountant should oversee an engineering team building an app, there's just too much knowledge that you probably don't have, and you're going to get caught up in pitfalls. Likewise, I should not be in charge of a large finance team. I know basic accounting, I can follow along. But when it gets big and complicated, I'm not your guy.

On the other hand, I regularly go into industries where I've never worked in this industry before. I don't have all the knowledge, but I can catch up on the pieces of knowledge I don't have over some period of time. And the big challenge is tripping people up, which is how do we think strategically about our product roadmap? How do we organize the engineering team? How do we build a repeatable process to deliver on what we have to do? Well, that I can do, I've done that before, it's just doing a different discipline. And maybe I only get 95% of the way there instead of 100. But if my 95 is better than someone who's been in the field, and it would be effectively 85 with that person, because he just doesn't go as quickly, then I'm probably the right candidate for that.


Michael Glazer  31:25

So far, we've been talking about all of these skills, from the standpoint of the people who can benefit from using these skills, I'm going to shift perspectives for a second, how can companies develop these skills in their employees?


Mark Herschberg  31:39

Well, that goes to creating this development program, where we can get people by putting them together, it doesn't cost you anything, and the employees really develop it in themselves, because we can't just say do ABC and you're a better leader. And so again, by doing this, you are going to create better employee engagement, better employee networking, you're going to create a common language, and overall, generate happier employees. And I have on the website, a free download that explains how you can do this.

Again, I recommend groups about six to eight people. But there are ways to add a 20 people and even 80 people. And you can do this effectively no cost. So you can download that and you can be the hero of your company, it says I have a brilliant way for us to train up our employees, you can take all the credit.


Michael Glazer  32:29

Yeah, and speaking of that, I'll just save to to everybody, Mark's book, The career tool, book, essential skills for success that nobody taught you. It's available for purchase on all the major retailers. You could learn more about the book at And as Mark said, the site is full of great tools, great resources, there's even a place where you can download an app which I have on my phone. It can be used by individuals, as we're talking about here. HR teams can put together peer discussion groups or peer learning groups based on this. Leaders can use this academics can use this. And if you like what you're listening to, and you want to connect with Mark, Mark is on LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, I think I've covered them all. And I'll put links to all of these things in the program notes.


Mark Herschberg  33:18

You you got all there's also on the website, you can reach out to me on there, there's a blog where I put out regular content. And on that Resources page, that's where I link to other books, I recommend including some my reference on my own. There are a number of free tools online that I referenced there, so you can go follow up before we go deeper on topic. And the first couple links are downloads to free resources, including that development program, and some other tools to help you all at the Career Toolkit


Michael Glazer  33:49

So Mark, to round out our conversation, I want to ask you a couple of questions about wellbeing at work. So what What's your thinking about the importance of wellbeing in the workplace, and how deserving it is of being a globally accepted basic human right.


Mark Herschberg  34:07

We've touched upon a little how the balances changing from just I'll work for you, and you give me a paycheck. And certainly we've seen a trend, at least here in the US, but I think common in other countries too, about mental well being and mental health. And we have to recognize it's no longer just well, I'll do this job and you'll pay me money. And that's sufficient for me. One of the reasons we have so many resignations right now is because people are saying it's not worth it. And this goes to the questions we talked about. The questions help create your career. It's not simply do I want to be a doctor or an accountant?

But it's what type of lifestyle do I want? When do I want to have a family? Where do I want to live? Because your career fits into your life. You shouldn't have to fit your life around your career. And so I think all All of us as individuals, we have to create a career plan that serves our needs in life.  And as companies and managers and HR, we have to support our employees in creating that plan for their life and then saying, given that, what is the career you want? And how can I support you in that? Mark, one last question for you. What does the phrase working with humans mean? Would it be great if everyone just did mechanically what they were supposed to do, and there were no issues? That sounds great, we'd probably lose a little of that whitespace of that creativity.

But the reality is, we're humans and we're emotional. And we have miscommunications and we have personal issues. Nearly every manager I speak to says the hardest part of management is the people. And this, by the way, is why in the book, I break management to two chapters, the process side, but also the people side, because that's what we often forget. And really, when working with humans, it is about the people and understanding people, their desires and motivations and how to best engage them. And if you can understand that, that probably serves you far more than just understanding the mechanics of whatever that group is trying to achieve.


Michael Glazer  36:19

Mark, so much practical advice here and insights. Thanks so much for stopping by and for this conversation.


Mark Herschberg  36:26

Thanks for having me on the show. It's been a pleasure.


Michael Glazer  36:30

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