Teachers in Transition

Teachers in Transition - Episode 31 - Special Guest, Becky Berry, Career Coach

October 23, 2019 Kitty Boitnott Season 1 Episode 31
Teachers in Transition
Teachers in Transition - Episode 31 - Special Guest, Becky Berry, Career Coach
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Teachers in Transition
Teachers in Transition - Episode 31 - Special Guest, Becky Berry, Career Coach
Oct 23, 2019 Season 1 Episode 31
Kitty Boitnott

In this episode of Teachers in Transition, Kitty Boitnott introduces a friend and coach colleague, Becky Berry. Becky is a former teacher who does executive career coaching with women (mostly although she has men clients, too) who are looking to expand their professional reach because they're "not done yet."

Hear how Becky went from being a Special Education Teacher to Career Coach and how she urges her clients to consider the possibilities of their own careers even as one chapter may close. Another one is always capable of being opened.

Becky Berry is the owner of Becky Berry Career Coaching where she coaches women who are seriously done with settling on just any job. They’re ready to claim their value and their place at work. Her rich background in startups and entrepreneurship allows Becky to provide distinctive insights and strategies to clients as they pursue their business and life goals.

 

Becky has experienced several crossroads in her own life including careers as a magazine publisher, software entrepreneur, stay-at-home mom, social entrepreneur, and widowhood. Her experiences inform her coaching as she helps women create rich, meaningful lives on their own terms.

 

Becky also produces and co-hosts the Uniquely Brilliant podcast, and coming in November, the She’s Not Done Yet podcast. Follow her on her website, https://beckyberrycoach.com, Facebook, Instagram: @beckyberrycoach, Twitter: @beckyberrycoach, and on LinkedIn


A transcript of this episode is available at http://bit.ly/2W6VkuR.

Show Notes Transcript

In this episode of Teachers in Transition, Kitty Boitnott introduces a friend and coach colleague, Becky Berry. Becky is a former teacher who does executive career coaching with women (mostly although she has men clients, too) who are looking to expand their professional reach because they're "not done yet."

Hear how Becky went from being a Special Education Teacher to Career Coach and how she urges her clients to consider the possibilities of their own careers even as one chapter may close. Another one is always capable of being opened.

Becky Berry is the owner of Becky Berry Career Coaching where she coaches women who are seriously done with settling on just any job. They’re ready to claim their value and their place at work. Her rich background in startups and entrepreneurship allows Becky to provide distinctive insights and strategies to clients as they pursue their business and life goals.

 

Becky has experienced several crossroads in her own life including careers as a magazine publisher, software entrepreneur, stay-at-home mom, social entrepreneur, and widowhood. Her experiences inform her coaching as she helps women create rich, meaningful lives on their own terms.

 

Becky also produces and co-hosts the Uniquely Brilliant podcast, and coming in November, the She’s Not Done Yet podcast. Follow her on her website, https://beckyberrycoach.com, Facebook, Instagram: @beckyberrycoach, Twitter: @beckyberrycoach, and on LinkedIn


A transcript of this episode is available at http://bit.ly/2W6VkuR.

Speaker 1:

Are you a teacher who's feeling stressed out and overwhelmed? Do you worry that you're feeling symptoms of burnout or are you sure you've already gotten there? Have you started to dream of doing some other kind of job or perhaps pursuing a whole different career, but you don't know what else you're even qualified to do? You don't know how to start a job search. You just feel stuck. If that sounds like you, I promise you're not alone. My name is Kitty Boitnott. I'm a career transition and job search coach and I specialize in helping burnt out teachers just like you deal not only with the stress and overwhelm of your day-to-day job, but to consider what other careers might be out there waiting for you. Join me for "Teachers in Transition." In some episodes I'll be speaking to stress management techniques and how you can manage your stress on a day to day basis. In other episodes I'll be talking about career transition. What tools do you need to be successful in a job search when you're moving from one career into a totally different track? These are questions that you need answers to and I can help you find those answers. My name is Kitty Boitnott. Welcome to "Teachers in Transition."

Kitty Boitnott:

Welcome back to an episode. This is Episode 31 of "Teachers in Transition" and today I've got a very special guests. We're going to deviate just a little bit from our normal routine by having a guest of Becky Berry of Becky Berry Career Coaching. Uh, Becky and I've been friends for a number of years. We first sort of joined up together when we were working for a mutual friend of ours and a mentor, another career coach. And then we went our separate ways, but we've continued to be Facebook friends and to stay in touch throughout the years. And by now it's been at least five years, hasn't it ? Yeah, it has. It's been exactly five years. So Becky, I know you're located in the Georgia area and one of the things that we resonated together over was the fact that we were both former educators turned career coach, right? Yeah. Yeah. So tell us a little bit about your teaching background before you became a coach. And then we'll talk about your coach. Okay, well it kind of goes with the coaching, which is kind of interesting. I was only a teacher for five years. Okay . Aye . I went into teaching when I was 48, I think 48 which meant whenever somebody came in my classroom they thought I'd been teaching forever. Right. So what happened was I needed , um, I needed benefits cause my son had cancer. So I had been a full time volunteer at my son's school. I called the principal, I said I need a job. And he says, call me on Wednesday. I call him on Wednesday. He goes, you're going to be a special ed. para-pro and I went, swallowed really hard and went, okay, what do I need to do? And he told me and then I hung up the phone. I called my sister, who's a teacher. I said, Suzy , special ed. par-pro. She goes, you've got this one. I'm like, okay. Okay. So I was a special ed para-pro . My first teacher who is, was a mentor throughout my five year career, said , um , you need to get your master's degree so you can teach. This was all in 2008, right? The absolute worst sound to become a teacher, right? Um, in 2008 and I was off to the races. I didn't, I didn't know that I had a gift for working with kids with special needs. I did the behavior children, I did the add kids, I did the explosive kids and I loved it. You know, I really did. I hated teaching. I hated the system. Cause I'm a coach. I'm a coach, I can deliver curriculum, whatever. But I'm a coach and my goal was always for my children to be able to take a risk and to feel confident in themselves as much as they were in their skills. And at the end of my career, my very final evaluation is one I will forever be proud of. And the , and this is what my clients tell me too, is my principal writes down, we're in the classroom with my fifth grade boys who read at a first grade level and we're doing stuff, and at the end, you know, he writes on the thing, he goes, Mrs. Berry , students aren't afraid to take a risk. And I was like, well, my work here is done. There you go . If I have these young men, I mean, they're turning into young men, they're 11 years old and they are , they are not afraid to answer a question there. They'll put it out there then, you know, that's everything I've done. Just the same thing I do with my clients when I think about it. But I like people who are different. I liked, I liked figuring out how to , I didn't even have to figure out how to reach them. I just kind of knew how to reach all the different kids I had. And it was great until it wasn't. Yeah. Until it wasn't, you want me to tell you if I tell leave while I left? Yes. Do tell us why you decided to this go resonate with just about anybody listening to this. And I know with you kitty, so I was working inside of an abusive system. It was abusive to teachers. I'm not saying anything. Anybody who doesn't know the only is worse. It's worse five years , six years later. Um , and I couldn't have , I couldn't impact it . I would go in, since I do behavior kids, everybody of course in the school knows me, right? And they're like, Becky, come in here and talk to me about this, that, and the, and I would be in a classroom with the , with the first or second year teacher who are like unbelievably great teachers and they get those evaluations based on yes, a four-point scale. How valid is no middle just asking . Um, and they would think they were bad teachers. I just couldn't, I couldn't stay. And concurrently my husband passed away. teaching is always high energy, it's exhausting, whatever. But when you are restraining children day in and day out, running after the kids who we love from the classroom, when you're doing those things and you built that career on having somebody at home that helps you reset and that's gone. That was it. How was it done? I just said I'm done. So as soon as the sheets came out, I think they came out in February of that year about what you were going to do next year. Came out, I asked, I tell my principal, I said, I'm leaving. How fast do you want this? He's like, but what are you going to do? I'm like, I have no idea, but it'll be there, but I'm leaving. I'm done. I'm not doing this anymore. And he goes, Becky, are you sure? I'm like, yes, I'm sure. So in February I gave him, you know, the thing so he could fill my special ed. slot, which is super hard to fill of course. And um, I was done and I had no idea what I was going to do. So what did you do? What led you to what? I didn't even know what a career coach was. I was walking with a girlfriend one day after school or at the mall of getting , you know, getting my 10,000 steps in. And I had just been to see my , my kids and um, in Boston and we were talking about startups because my husband and I had done startups in the 80s and all kinds of stuff. And my son got , you should be at , you know, you should have your own startup, whatever. And I get those words out of my mouth and Christina goes, you should, you should , you should have your own startup. You should be a career coach. Duh , duh , duh , duh , duh . And I went, okay, you're right. I should. No idea of what it was. But I knew I could coach. I mean, I had never applied coach to me. Right . But really that's how I moved through the world. So that's how I came to be a career coach. Had my next client, my first client conversations on February 11th. I had my first client in June and I've been doing it ever since in some way or two years in there. I got a certification wasn't in a rush. Gotcha, gotcha. Yeah . So yeah, it's , it's interesting that we made similarly , um , on the outside looking in impulsive decisions to leave prematurely before other people thought we were done. But we knew in our hearts, I certainly knew in my heart going back was not an option and it's now... And of course with your husband passing away, that's a major life change that you have to adjust your whole life around. And it's as sad and tragic a loss is as that is in , in my case, I'm divorced and I was married to um, Oh , a wonderful individual who had a mental disease , a disorder that will disorder. He was diagnosed after we were married as having , um , bipolar disorder. And I also later suspected that he was borderline personality. He had a lot of, a lot of those characteristics. But those kinds of experiences also don't you think add to the depth of our ability to empathize with other people wherever they happen to be in their own lives and because we've, we've had to deal with major change and then some cases, tragedies, that we're able to show people that it is possible to move through those and become successful on the other end. Yeah, it is. And I never, I never think about that when I talk to prospects on it. Just had one on the phone before we did this interview and I don't, I don't think about it. I always talk about the business part because you know, this is my, this is my seventh or eighth career, depending on how I count it. So, you know, I'm not afraid of change, which, which means when I coach people through change, it's different than somebody who's always been in, in a career to , you know, a lot of, a lot of people, our mutual friend came out of human resources. No, I don't come out of of working with a group of people that are in a company. I come out of changing all the time, figuring out what I'm going to do next and making new connections. Um , that evolution that I like to talk about. I, I forbid my clients from using the word reinvention, it's dismissive of all that went before you will see it evolving. So see, I refer to myself as having reinvented and retooled. I would take retooled and evolve because re-invented always feels to me like that, that what came before it gets kind of set aside when in fact it's what propels us forward. So that's kind of my way I've worked through it. So, I'll have to take that into consideration and yeah. Yeah, a different way to present what I did . I definitely, we told, have thought of myself as having reinvented. With that said, I do tell people I'm still teaching, I'm just teaching a different curriculum to different groups . Right, right. And you know, I, my friends take, expand , teach your friends take exception. When I say I wasn't a good teacher, I was a great teacher, but that's not my thing. My thing is coaching, my thing is not delivering a curriculum. My thing is digging deep and figuring out how you want to use all these skills that are so devalued. How you want to use those to go forward to the life that you know to the life and the work that you want. Right. Well, I think the best teachers are also always coaches at heart, right? Their coaches, their mentors, they see something in somebody else that that person doesn't necessarily see in themselves. Right. And as coaches, we help them to see it and then we nurture it and then to use that, whatever it is that , that essence , uh , in a, in a new way of presenting themselves to the world. I liked them. I liked the way you described that. The other thing I'd like for you to talk about is , um, the, and I've forgotten exactly how you put it. So it's got something to do with not being done yet. Oh yeah. My new podcast is called, "She's Not Done Yet." That's the one. Yeah , well I'm 62 and I'm not done yet. I don't know that I'll ever be done. And in this society, we're pretty much done after we're 35 no people, people tend to discount women after their 35 when in fact we get so much smarter and wiser and have so much more to offer every year that goes by that it's just a shame. So I , that's, that's like, I guess it's kind of the core of my coaching too . You know, people , people come in and they're like not getting traction in their job search or whatever and they're in their 50s and it's , I like to say to them, you're , you don't have to be done yet. We've just got to figure out how to, how to, what you want to use going forward. Um, and, and develop that into what you want to do next. So on my podcast, I talk to women over 50 who aren't done yet, all kinds of different people. And that's the word I want to spread out there. I'm , I'm really dedicated to bring in the voice of older women, mature women back into the conversation. And interestingly enough, the people who are most interested in hearing this voice are women in their thirties. Interesting. Not women in their fifties but women in their thirties. Right? So it works on both sides. I, I collaborate with a lot of women in their thirties on their businesses and in my office, I have people here. So it's really important. We used to call it the voice of the crone . You know what a lot of people hear crone and they think dried up all one . But we know what kind of person drew those pictures and they weren't women. Um , so this is the voice that has raised generations of people that have, have effected change, civil rights, all of the things that all came from voices of crones . And I'm just bringing it back and a very deliberate and thought out way. I love it. I love i t's stories. It's not, there's not a real agenda to my, to my , um, podcast . It's a conversation that just takes us places because that's where the learning this, that's where people get things. I can hook onto and go, Oh, I've done that. I've stayed home, I've gone back, I've had this happen. And uh , I think there's, there's a giant hole in the conversation. Well, as someone who just turned 67 last week, I know for myself, I've not done, that's still right before I'm blown to consider being done. And so I certainly resonate with that message as well. So who would be your ideal client, Becky? Who are the folks that are looking to work with you and that you really love working with? I like working with women 35 to 60 and that's literally who comes to me. Plus men, men come to me too , although every bit of my marketing is to women who are trying to figure out what's next. Some of them are still working, some of them have been taken like a, like an early retirement package or something for a company in there and they're just not done. And they might've been at that company. No kidding here. 20-25 years, haven't interviewed, don't have any idea of how to figure out what they want to do next. And that's what we do. We work through it. I have a, I have a program in a strategy that's very flexible and useful and I like to say job search today is targeted, sophisticated and nuanced and my strategy addresses all those pieces. So at the, and they have a very full organic picture of who they are, what they want to do and how they want to do it . That's terrific. And how would people get in touch with you if they decided they wanted to check you out and work with you? You can find me anywhere on any platform with Becky Barry coach, and it's Barry with an E. so I'm on among Facebook, LinkedIn, very. B. E. R. R. Y. yeah. So that's, that's how you find it . Find me . I also have another podcast called "Uniquely Brilliant," which we are, we are coming back, we're coming back. My podcast cohost moved to Ohio and we hadn't talked in over a year and we, we reunited at a podcast conference last week in Atlanta and we're recording the new episode on Friday. So you can find me. Also if you look at uniquely brilliant sound . Um, it's on iTunes, Google play and SoundCloud. And your podcast. One more time. "She's Not Done Yet." He's not done yet. Is it also on iTunes? It's not yet. Not yet. That's coming in November. That's coming in November. I'm uh , made some major changes to it, some reworking some of the episodes, so that'll be coming in November. I also have a newsletter because I write a lot of blogs post and things and share a lot of information , uh , with my list and you can find that on a map on my website. BeckyBerryCoach.com. Excellent. Excellent. Well Becky, it's terrific catching up with you again and I appreciate you carving out some time this morning to chat with me and to share with my audience. And uh, with that said, I think I'll wind up for today saying thank you to anybody who's been listening to the podcast, "Teachers in Transition." If you have any questions, please shoot them to me at kittyboitnott@gmail.com. If you'd like to reach out to Becky, please feel free to do that. And uh, as always, please consider subscribing to the podcast or to the YouTube channel where you'll also find a video of this. I forgot you were doing a video. Yeah, wait , we are doing a video for the YouTube channel, which is also "Teachers i n Transition" and u h, and and offer a review. I'd love to hear from on that note. I'll say the five for now. (Becky, hang o n).

Speaker 1:

So there you have it, an episode of "Teachers in Transition." I hope you enjoyed the information and I hope you'll plan to come back. Please subscribe to "Teachers in Transition" so that you can be alerted of future episodes. And let me know if you have any questions or topics that you would like me to specifically cover in a future episode. I'm more than happy to help with individual questions as well. So email me at KittyBoitnott@BoitnottCoaching.com. If you are interested in finding a new career or just enjoying your life more, this is the place to start. Hi, I'm Kitty Boitnott and this is "Teachers in Transition."