Punk Rock HR Episode 126:
Today’s guest is author and speaker Minda Harts. If you have ever wondered who’s fighting for women of color to get a seat at the table, it’s Minda. Her book, Memo, has opened the doors for women and other authors to talk about what’s really happening in the world of work.
On top of her nationally recognized book, Minda has a terrific LinkedIn account, a prolific blog, and great Instagram and Twitter accounts. Most importantly, she is an amazing podcaster and the host of the show, Secure the Seat. Minda is a self-proclaimed career revolutionary. Her goal is to leave the workplace better than she found it.
In this episode, Minda and I are talking about her work, including her new book. We discuss where she gets her inspiration and passion for the content she creates. I’m so excited to talk to someone who’s kicking butt and taking names. Tune in to be a part of the conversation.
In this episode you’ll hear:
- The different mediums Minda uses to get her message out.
- What her book, Memo, is all about and what lessons people can get out of it.
- Where she learned the lessons she shares in Memo.
- Her writing process for Memo and how she established her tone.
- The origin story that made her who she is today.
- How she knows she’s making a difference in her community.
- How she responds to those who complain about what she says and does.
- How to overcome imposter syndrome.
- What success means to her.
- Why she is excited about the future of work.
WHAT IS MINDA’S BOOK, MEMO, ALL ABOUT?
Sometimes, when we talk about women in the workplace, we use a one-size-fitsall approach. In Memo, Minda explains that all women don’t experience the workplace the same. She asserts that we need to start talking about this. As a black woman in the workplace, she often felt isolated. She had to work ten times harder just to be seen or taken seriously, even with the same credentials as someone who was her counterpart. From this experience, she realized that we aren’t talking about these issues enough. Memo was one of the first books of its kind talking about the experiences of women of color in the workplace.
WHAT IS MINDA’S ORIGIN STORY?
Minda has seen how racism doesn’t just kill people but careers too. Her whole life, she wanted to be in the C Suite. However, once she entered into one particular environment which she writes about in Memo, she realized that no matter how many relationships she had and even if she did everything right, the environment just did not want her in it. She experienced so many different micro and macro aggressions in a way that she hadn’t before. She realized that sometimes you can do everything right and still not get to your spot. It made her think about how many other women that look like her feel the exact same way. At that moment, she decided she was going to dedicate her life to making sure that women who worked really hard could lean into the courage available to them.
HOW DOES MINDA KNOW SHE’S MAKING A DIFFERENCE IN HER COMMUNITY?
Minda feels alive when she hears from the people she is influencing. When women reach out to her and tell her how much her content made a difference in their lives and helped them lean into their courage, she knows she’s made a difference. Those responses supersede any superficial markers of success.
HOW CAN I OVERCOME IMPOSTER SYNDROME?
Imposter syndrome was created to make us always second-guess ourselves or be worried about what others are thinking of us. When we feel it coming on, we have to take back the narrative. We must realize that we have the power to redefine what success means to us. Everyone is going to have an opinion about the way you do things, but that is their narrative and you don’t have to accept it.
WHY CAN WE BE EXCITED ABOUT THE FUTURE OF WORK?
We are at a really pivotal time in our society where the decisions we make can really benefit the next generation of leaders. If we are leaning into more compassion, being more flexible, and redefining success at work, then we can make sure that the workplace is better than we found it. People hold a lot of power right now to put in the processes and guardrails to make the workplace better for everybody. The workplace is being humanized more and more. When we remember that and the opportunities that are in this moment, we can make better decisions on how the workplace works for everybody.
Resources from this episode:
Minda on Real Leader’s 40 Top Women Keynote Speakers for 2020 List.