The bar is smoky. Loud. I can’t think and I can’t decide if it’s the booze or this idea clogging my brain. I get like that with ideas. They kind of overwhelm my thought process; the good ideas at least. My brain pops out ideas at a mile a minute but only certain ones stick and this. This is one I need to get out.
I’m just feeling really lucky. Not so much on the slots but lucky in that I get to be at SourceCon in the first place. That I get to travel places to talk about what I love. I get to see the people who have influenced me. I get to bear hug the Three Stooges – Steve, Derek and Pete. Spend hours talking about life with Jackye. Fall asleep exhausted from great conversations and ideas only to wake up to a spontaneous breakfast with Jo.
But in this moment, well past my bedtime in a bar, I’m thinking about how to pay it forward, too. Everyone should feel like this. Have these moments. Make these friends. How do some people get speaking gigs left and right while other people wait their turn? Where are all the apply pages? How do you actually help someone build a reputation?
As usual, that moment of serendipity happens and there’s Derek.
I regurgitate my idea to him like I have a million times before with a million half-wit ideas and he starts to nod.
“That’s good,” I thought. I think he gets it.
Not only did he get it, he wanted to help me build it. That idea – of paying it forward, of helping other people build their reputation, of propelling smart people to do great things they were born to do. That’s where A Talented Squad was born and why I wanted to build it. It’s more than a collective. It’s using your skills to elevate other people.
The idea is simple. Invite 8 people to join who all have different ideas and passions. People who love to help other people and have aspirations of doing it even more. People with different talents. Bring them together to make everyone better. To give HR, recruiting and sourcing conference organizers a place to find new faces.
Figure things out for awhile and then we’ll each invite one more person. And a little while after that, one more person. It’s literally a group designed to just pay it forward and help other people get closer to their dreams of speaking and sharing their best recruiting, sourcing and HR ideas.
No formula or “hack.” Just a story and an idea that’s turning into something now because 7 people said yes. Thanks for that, by the way.
Katrina (Kat) Kibben [they/them] is a keynote speaker, writing expert, and LGBTQIA+ advocate who teaches hiring teams how to write inclusive, unbiased job postings that will get the right person to apply faster.
Before founding Three Ears Media, Katrina was a CMO, Technical Copywriter, and Managing Editor for leading companies like Monster, Care.com, and Randstad Worldwide. With 15+ years of recruitment marketing and training experience, Katrina knows how to turn talented recruiting teams into talented writers who write for people, not about work.
Today, Katrina is frequently featured as an HR and recruiting expert in publications like The New York Times, Chicago Tribune, and Forbes. They’ve been named to numerous lists, including LinkedIn’s Top Voices in Job Search & Careers. When not speaking, writing, or training, you’ll find Katrina traveling the country in their van or spending some much needed downtime with the dogs that inspired the name Three Ears Media.