Marketing jobs are posted everywhere. As a matter of fact, the economy and job market has never been stronger for jobs, and yet for many professionals finding the right fit, and solid opportunity is proving to be difficult. Underemployment, and unreported unemployment might be skewing the market, but how can you beat the system designed to favor those who “have a job” over those who don’t? Maybe, you do something crazy, tell your story, share it with some friends and watch it go viral.
This week on The Summit, we sit down with Bri Land of Now Hiring My New Boss to discuss her journey from the unemployment line to TV interviews, viral posts, and companies applying to have her on their team. In this episode we cover:
- What is Now Hiring My New Boss
- Where did the idea come from
- How to survive the brutal job market (it’s not all roses)
- Keeping an edge
- How companies and recruiters are failing a modern workforce and how can they improve
Listen in now as our host Kyle Hamer and special guest Bri Land talk about this incredible idea and it’s impact on her life.
Kyle Hamer: (00:00)
Hello, welcome to the summit, the podcast where we bring you the knowledge and insights from today’s industry leaders and professionals. No fluff, no double digit overnight growth schemes. We’re having real conversations with real people and getting you answers on how to take your career, your marketing, and your business to the next level. My name is Kyle Haimer. I’m your host. And today we’re with my special guest and new friend Bri. And I don’t know how you say your last name, Bree. Why don’t you introduce yourself?
Bri Land: (00:31)
Yeah, I’m first name TBRI last name is land. Just like, uh, you know the land that you stand on.
Kyle Hamer: (00:38)
Well, why do I want to go London or London? I was like, Oh man, I should probably have asked that ahead of time. But I didn’t, I didn’t. Uh, today we want to talk about creative ways to find your new boss. I you did something pretty unique and cool. And this is a, a way in which you as a digital marketer have hacked the success to your next career opportunity. So before we get into that though, Bri, tell us a little bit about yourself. Other than, you know, your last name is like the place where you stand.
Bri Land: (01:06)
I guess I would describe myself as kind of a full stack marketer, less than a specialist, more of a, you know, kind of a big picture, putting it all together, type of marketer. I guess my superpower is taking that big picture and then walking it back into smaller steps to kind of create an actionable plan. So I have a lot of startup startup experience. I’ve owned my own business before and then most recently I was at a digital agency here in Houston, so
Kyle Hamer: (01:39)
that’s awesome. But you’re not a full time marketer by day and that’s all you do 24 hours, seven days a week. Right. There’s part of breathe that’s living and breathing and as cool stuff that happens outside of work. Tell me, tell me a little bit about your family and how you ended up in Houston.
Bri Land: (01:56)
Yeah, sure. For many years. I was a stay at home mom slash Navy wife that kind of moved all over, all over the place, including, you know, uh, Virginia and Florida and then a, uh, a nice three years in Italy and then landed in Austin, Texas. And when my husband got in the Navy, we found ourselves in Houston because of the oil and gas market at the same time. I was looking to get back into work and you know, my kids were of school age, so, so yeah, that was about 10 years ago. Time flies. So now I have a 13 year old and a 16 year old and um, college is quickly approaching, so, so yeah.
Kyle Hamer: (02:44)
That’s awesome. Now with, with, okay, for many years you were a stay at home mom, you, you went back in into the workforce. I’ve had become a full stack marketer as you’ve described. And then recently you found yourself in the middle of a career transition and that caused you to do something a little, a little different, a little creative. Tell us, you know, as you found yourself in the middle of a career transition, what was going on that, that what I’m doing is insane and you got to do something different.
Bri Land: (03:15)
Yeah. So I was laid off, um, at the very end of October, beginning of November time frame, right before the holidays were about to hit. And you know, I was luckily given a little bit of a severance and that gave me a little bit of a runway and I thought that, you know, the job B job market being what it is today or what we hear it is today, that I wouldn’t have had an issue finding my next role. But you know, holidays hits and I was just applying and hearing absolutely nothing. And it started with a thought exercise for myself on, I’m not, I’m obviously not hitting the right, right people, my people and, and what, what would it look like? What would my perfect boss look like? What would my perfect company look like that I would want to work for? And so spent some time and put that together.
Bri Land: (04:19)
And then I was like, you know what if I put this online? And so, you know, I talked about with my husband and he was like, yes, you absolutely have to do this. So I decided to kind of create a whole campaign around it. And um, I launched it, I guess it was the week of Christmas and I was like, this is either going to go really bad because nobody’s on LinkedIn or even paying attention or it can, you know, possibly go well and people are on LinkedIn looking for their new new role and they’re new in their spare time. So anyway, um, I launched it, I emailed it and asked very nicely to some people that I respected in the industry to share it and they did. And so I don’t know how many, I probably should have looked this up before, before we talked, but I don’t know how many new bosses have applied at this point, but I would say about 50% actually have a job for me.
Bri Land: (05:24)
A lot of people were, you know, reaching out to say, you know, just words of encouragement. So, but yeah, so it, it eventually ended up going viral when a woman out of New York named Cindy Gallop, shared it with her network, got picked up on a Australian news site, and then eventually the local local news here in Houston, which that was just, I think it was two weeks ago today when that aired. And so that, that really helped get the word out locally to more realistic job opportunities for me. You know, because when Cindy shared it, she, you know, her network was on the coasts and has an amazing network and I’m connected to all these like crazy cool people now on LinkedIn. But at this point in our lives, you know, we’re pretty settled in Houston unless they’re, you know, willing to, to have me work remote. It’s not really a, a feasible option right now. So,
Kyle Hamer: (06:28)
Sure. Now for those that are listening, we haven’t really talked to me. You’ve talked a little bit about the idea, but what did you create? What did you share out and what did go viral? So, so what is, what is it that you actually created?
Bri Land: (06:40)
Um, so I created a website that, you know, kind of introduces myself to recruiters, my new boss, you know, whoever’s listening, you know, it talks a little bit about myself, kind of walks you through what I’m looking for and some of my strengths. There’s a few, um, a few gifts in there, few emojis that make it fun. It’s less about my absolute hard skills and experience and more about me as a person, which you don’t really see on a resume. So yeah, it walks you through that and then at the end of it gives the person an opportunity to apply to be my new boss.
Kyle Hamer: (07:26)
Well, what I can, what I can tell you is, is that it’s one of the most novel concepts that I’ve ever seen. I mean, a lot of people talk about building a portfolio or professional experience, a landing a webpage just for yourself, but you built it and in the name of the site is now hiring my new boss. And the way that you, the way that you positioned it, the way that you put it on your LinkedIn profile, the way that you’ve done everything is it looks like company, right? It looks like you could be a recruiter now, hiring my new boss. Wait, I’ve got great talent all around me. I mean, I thought, I thought the concept was just fantastic and I was, and that’s what I thought it was like a recruiting agency. Yeah. When I found out that it was your way of attracting your next job opportunity, I thought that it was just brilliant. There’s, there’s a lot of things that you, you share about yourself that go beyond the rank and file, normal boring, status quo, PC interview process. You share the nuances and stuff that that it is that makes you unique and that makes you stand out.
Kyle Hamer: (08:40)
Why? I know, I think, I think it’s super cool, but like what was it that you were struggling with that made you say, Hey, this is what I want to do? Was it, you were having certain bad experiences, you just weren’t hearing from anybody? Like you had this creative expression you needed to get out, like it just like
Bri Land: (08:58)
Y yeah, sure. It was. Um, it’s kind of multifaceted. I guess. One, it was out of frustration with the whole interviewing and hiring process in general. And then too, you know, it’s so much easier to go into an interview process when somebody has read a little bit about the real you, you know, it makes things so much more comfortable. And me being a little bit of an introvert and having a hard time just in interviews in general, I mean, I know everybody does, but it’s just such a nerve wracking process. It, it really has helped me become a little bit more comfortable that, that process. And then three, you know, I, that my next role is somewhere that I want to be for a long time. You know, I’ve worked for a lot of startups and smaller companies, three family businesses, and those can all be very unstable. And if the company falls on hard times, even just a little bit, it can affect everybody within the company. So, yeah. The next role that I’m, I’m looking for. I want to be in it for a long time and if I’m going to be in it for a long time, I want to know that people value the same things that I value.
Kyle Hamer: (10:29)
So I want to ask questions about those, but in reverse order. So let’s talk about, let’s talk about number three here, which you want to be someplace for a long time.
Bri Land: (10:38)
Kyle Hamer: (10:40)
What, what is it you’re looking for in your new boss? Like you, you, you’ve obviously outlined it on the website, but what were the things that you saw in your, in your past opportunities, in your past positions where you’re like, you know what, these are the things I liked and I want to see these characteristics outlined and these are the things that I don’t like. What are you looking for?
Bri Land: (11:02)
Most of all, you know, the more that I, you know, the more experience that I get and the more, um, yeah, just talk to people in business. There are a lot of people out there that just kind of talk the talk and nobody has it all figured out. And you know, I’m, I’m looking for somebody that I can compliment and then, you know, maybe I have some skill sets that they don’t and vice versa. Hopefully we can learn from each other. Yeah. It’s a, a humble attitude is in a sense of humor is, you know, those are the number two things in my book that I’m looking for.
Kyle Hamer: (11:58)
So you want to learn something, you want to bring something to the table and you want to do it with, we’ll have a good time. That sounds like the perfect job for anybody.
Bri Land: (12:06)
Kyle Hamer: (12:10)
You, you mentioned you were super frustrated with the hiring process in January, right? The market today says that unemployment’s at the lowest rate ever and digital marketers seem to be in demand everywhere. Especially with somebody, your, your capability in being full-stack. What’s your being your reality? Like they talk about this, but is that, is that the reality in the market today?
Bri Land: (12:38)
I don’t think so. You know, when I launched this campaign, I was not the only one by any means. I had people coming out of the woodwork who were also a too, you know, they’ve been out of work for like a year or more. You know, I don’t think that what we’re hearing in the news is really telling the whole whole picture. You know, I myself had felt, you know, always a little bit underemployed. You know, I, I feel like I have more to offer than the chances that I’ve been given. And I feel like there’s a lot of that out there. I’m not sure that that is the reality, especially here in Houston. For somebody like me, I’ve got some B to B experience now, but you know, a lot of B to C stuff and Houston is just, it’s a rough town for somebody like that.
Kyle Hamer: (13:33)
Now the other thing that I thought was really, really interesting that you, you said in your three, I mean your first one is as you were frustrated with the market and, and traction, the second thing, uh, you know, we, we you shared was, is feeling comfortable in the interview and inside of your own skin. Tell me about what it is about sharing those, the more complete view of Brie in now hiring my new boss that makes you feel more comfortable around people. What, what is it that he, it, it gives you or, or how does it help build that confidence for you?
Bri Land: (14:10)
I think it kind of takes away, you know, in the interview process you can kind of feel like you’re trying to sell yourself at some, some points and that is not a strength of mine at all. So I feel like it kind of takes away that, you know, desire to want to mold into whatever person that you’re the person interviewing you wants to be. You know what I mean? It takes away the pressure and you know, everybody’s always talking about authenticity in marketing, you know? But I feel like, like I was like, you know, I’m going to put my money where my mouth is and see if this really works know. And so far it has, you know, I, you know, still hiring. But uh, but yeah, the response has been really good all around.
Kyle Hamer: (15:03)
So a lot of people out there might be thinking, okay, Bri, you’ve, you’ve convinced me I need to do something different. Take a different approach. But you had a severance package. Surely this was expensive to take on. Was this an expensive endeavor for you?
Bri Land: (15:18)
Oh, absolutely not. What tools did you use? Like how did you, like how did you make this all happen? Yeah, I mean, so you know, I have experience creating sites on Shopify, WordPress, HubSpot, and what I used for this site, because I wanted to keep it very clean and simple was just Squarespace. And it took me maybe a day, maybe not a day to write everything, but to get everything set up and you know, working and, uh, the way that I wanted it to. Yeah. That’s, and expensive, maybe like under 20 bucks a month. And I of course bought my, about my domain as well as you know, that, that that’s pretty cheap too. You can, uh, and you can also create, uh, a company on LinkedIn for free.
Kyle Hamer: (16:15)
Yeah. LinkedIn, LinkedIn makes it easy to be, be a lot of things, but so it wasn’t expensive. And, and one of the things that you shared in your blog was, is kind of this, this graph of traffic. So we’ve got, you’ve got Squarespace, 20 bucks a month, bought a domain, maybe it was $4, maybe it was 20. I dunno, you might, you might be in for what, maybe a hundred bucks at this point. Yeah. Did you, did you advertise at all? Like how did you get traffic in? And then we’ll talk a little bit more about how you went viral in just a second.
Bri Land: (16:51)
Sure. Um, I did test one ad I spent about a hundred dollars on that when I noticed that traffic and interest was kind of going down a little bit. And um, I use a little bit of ABM targeted some companies that I really, you know, was interested in. And at the same time my, my site was being shared in like Facebook groups and you know, all kinds of places. And, um, I think that’s where it eventually started to, to really go viral. When, when Cindy Gallop, you know the, the lady that I mentioned earlier shared that she, she said she found it in this, in a Facebook group for like women in tech. So, so yeah, that’s, that’s kind of where, where it started and she’s, like I said, she’s kind of a, a force and so once, once she shared it, it really took off.
Kyle Hamer: (17:51)
So you, you know, you tracked, so we got SquareSpace, we use LinkedIn, we did some targeting with, with LinkedIn ads, maybe shared in, in Facebook, social media. What did you share to try and get people to come apply to be a boss or did you get shared and get feedback? Like what, what was the spirit of, of some of your posting early on for people like Cindy to get exposed to, to my new boss.
Bri Land: (18:16)
Yeah. So I originally posted it on LinkedIn at the very exact time that I did that I asked, I sent an email to some people that I just really respect in the industry who I know have influence and ask them to share my LinkedIn post. That was the post that really, really got things started here locally in the beginning, knowing that all those people were kind of sharing it and liking it at the same time. And, and I think it’s just [inaudible] it’s something that people haven’t seen before and we’re just generally interested in it.
Kyle Hamer: (18:58)
Well, it is unique, right? I mean it’s, it’s not every day it’s somebody goes out and says, Hey, I’m now hiring you. Like flip, flip the, flip the script.
Bri Land: (19:08)
Well, I hope, I hope that it didn’t come across as arrogant because I’m not that. So
Kyle Hamer: (19:16)
I don’t, I don’t think anything about it comes across as arrogant, truthfully, bringing anybody that takes time to go out and read. I think that what they’ll find is that it’s a very empathetic, authentic view of somebody beyond the resume. My take as a, you know, as a marketer of many years is that it’s somebody who’s, who’s playful, creative, a down to earth, but also earnest in, in the things that, um, that drive them. You know, I think one of the things that I found most fascinating was as you talked about all of the things, the skills that you had taught yourself. Sometimes job seekers, they, they don’t think about the skills that that it takes to teach themselves do things right or, or the process of learning a new craft or a new skill. They think only about the skills that are required for that particular function or that particular job. And there are so many other nuanced pieces that happen when you pick up a skill elsewhere. So the, the, you’ve taught yourself how to play guitar and woodworking, if I remember right,
Bri Land: (20:21)
I’m not guitar but, but definitely wood working.
Kyle Hamer: (20:28)
I, you know, if I could, if I could teach myself to do one thing, it would be play guitar, but my hands grandpop’s so stinking fast. Now for folks that are out there that are not in your shoes or, or are struggling, what’s some of the, what’s some of the advice that you would give those people that are still in the market, either underemployed or unemployed and, and, and searching for their next opportunity that haven’t built this inbound machine that you have? What, what would be some of your advice for them?
Bri Land: (20:56)
Um, you know, I, you know, you mentioned kind of self teaching. There is so much out there that’s free if you’re just willing to, to put in some of that work. For example, all of the HubSpot certifications that you can get just, I mean for free, I don’t know how many they have, but uh, you know, it’s probably like 20 at this point you can get certified in Google ads, Google analytics, like all these things are, are for free and things that I think employers really look for. Just put some thought into exactly like who, who do you want to work for because it is a two way street and when you start treating it that way, things change a little bit. I think, um, your confidence goes up a bit and that, and then, and then also the other thing that’s really helped me is finding community. I it’s amazing how I can have this community on LinkedIn now of I would say mostly women. Um, there, there’s a few men out there too. There’ve been huge cheerleaders. But um, just the way that people have been rallying around me has been amazing and it really kind of gets you through those low points.
Kyle Hamer: (22:21)
Having community and having families, I think one of the most underappreciated things as you’re displaced from work. Yeah. Cause you go from interacting with folks all day, every day to very isolated and kind of quiet existence. Even if you’ve got a great severance package, the fact that you’re, you know, you’re a social circle goes from say you’re working at a company if 30 all the way up to 300, you’re interacting with at least five to 10 different people on a daily basis and the moment which that changes that community has gone. So I think that’s, that’s a really key key element.
Bri Land: (22:58)
Oh and also exercise. Why exercise? Cause that’s my, I usually go in the afternoon, I run on the Heights jogging trail and uh, I just pop in my headphones and listen to, you know, marketing podcasts or, or, uh, true crime podcasts just to like kind of check out for a little bit. That’s, that’s been a lifesaver too.
Kyle Hamer: (23:26)
Now that you’ve, you’ve been in the market for a period of months, you’ve tried it the old fashioned way of here’s my cover letter, networking with people, sending them an resume, applying to jobs and then the way that you’re doing it now, which is you’re driving demand to yourself, what kind of advice do you have for employers that are out there, that are looking to get the best talent and to hire people for, um, for the positions that they have opened? What, what kind of advice do you have?
Bri Land: (24:03)
Um, I would say that, you know, there’s not going to be one perfect person that checks all the boxes who also fits into your company culture. People are teachable and hire the person, not the, the product I guess. Um, if somebody gets along great, is helpful in his team player, no jobs too small or big, but they don’t have, you know, a specific skill that you’re looking for. All of those are, are just, those are all very teachable, um, things. So yeah, hire the person, not the product.
Kyle Hamer: (24:50)
And along the way you’ve dealt with recruiters that help you try and land a position. What kind of advice would you have for recruiters based on your experience in the last however many months?
Bri Land: (25:01)
Call people back? No, I’m just kidding. Um, no, and I know that they’re, you know, recruiters are in a tough spot just like job seekers are, but you know, just, just a note to keep people in the loop, you know? And if it’s, if it’s not a good fit then that’s totally okay. But when we’re left hanging and wondering, it’s a, it can be pretty agonizing.
Kyle Hamer: (25:30)
And then last but not least, I mean you’ve, we’ve, we’ve kind of touched on all of these across the board, but for those people that are out there, exercise community, doing something creative, teaching yourself new skills, what other advice, if any, is left for somebody that’s in the job market and looking for it today?
Bri Land: (25:49)
Um, I would say to run through the open doors that are given to you because like doing things like this right now is completely out of my comfort zone and um, so it was being on the news two weeks ago. So just kind of run through those doors whenever they’re opened and just do your best to make it through
Kyle Hamer: (26:16)
the, the update is as of this recording that there are lots of bosses still going through the application process, but you haven’t selected one yet.
Bri Land: (26:25)
Kyle Hamer: (26:27)
So if somebody wants to get ahold of you once they be interviewed by you once to become a part of this process, what’s the best way for them to get, get in contact with you Bri?
Bri Land: (26:38)
Yeah. Just going to my, going to my site now hiring my new boss.com. I’m kind of reading about me, connect to me on LinkedIn, did to see what I’m about and yeah, we’ll go from there.
Kyle Hamer: (26:55)
That’s awesome. Well, I really appreciate you taking the time to share your story. Um, this, this just fabulous outside of the box, a way of flipping a, a very old paradigm on its head and putting a digital marketers creative twist on it. This, it’s been fascinating learning about your story over the last couple of weeks and watching you catapult into the jet stream of opportunity. You’re making me blush and I, we really, we really, really, really thankful you, you were on the show today and getting an update when you’ve selected that new boss. Sure. Awesome. We’ll breathe. Thanks for being here. We’ll talk soon. All right. Thank you.