ask me anything
I really wish I could hop on a call or sit down to coffee with every single person who asks to meet up and "pick my brain," but I can't. Unfortunately, I'm not Wonder Woman, and I don't have the time or the energy to do that. However, that doesn't mean that I don't want to help you. I really do!
That's why I've come up with a list of frequently asked questions. Some of these are from actual coffee dates and some of these are my own, from when I needed advice and didn't know who to talk to. Remember, you already have everything you need to be who you were made to be - which also includes the Google search bar, YouTube tutorials and all of my oversharing on Instagram.
Did I miss something? Probably. Just ask!
Still wanna meet up? Great! Shoot me a message telling me who you are, how you heard about me (or where we met), and why you think it would be beneficial for both of us to get together in person or on a video call. Be sure to include a few dates and times that work for you, as I'm usually booked out four to six weeks in advance.
If you're interested in one-on-one coaching, send me a message with how you heard about me and why you think right now is the best time for you to start coaching. You can also keep an eye out for LIVE GROUP COACHING in 2020.
How did you get your start? What was your first internship?
Technically, my first internship was for the Tony Fly Morning Show at B96. I say "technically" because I never applied for the position, nor was I ever given any instructions. I showed up at 4am one day to watch the show, I asked if I could help out the next day (I was told I could as long as I kept quiet and didn't bring food into the studio), and then I kept showing up every morning for the rest of the season. I was a full-time college student and an athlete (dancer), with a part-time job; I didn't even have a car at the time, but I made it work. And it paid off.
Despite only coming into contact with the PD once or twice, I made enough of an impression for him to keep tabs on me long afterwards. A decade later, he convinced me to move from Los Angeles back to Minneapolis for the headlining role as a co-host on "Mornings with Ben, Dana & Giselle" on the revamped Go 96.3, a promotion into the Digital Branding Manager position (that I created) soon after that, and a lifelong mentor/friendship.
What is one piece of advice you would give someone starting out?
Find a mentor - even if it's a podcast host or an author you've never met, but do your best to lean on someone who you actually know and who will truly look out for you. My one regret is not leaning on other women sooner. In some ways, I was too proud. In some ways, I had trust issues and had been burned in an overly competitive industry. The tables are turning. There are far more women willing to support women nowadays. If you're lonely in your career, you're doing it wrong. Make a conscious effort to lean on or reach out to someone in a genuine way every single day.
Where did you go to college?
I went to USC in Los Angeles and graduated from their Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism. While there, I performed all over the world and for a victorious Rose Bowl with the USC Song Girls and later became the campus correspondent for ESPNU. I was also the VP Membership (recruitment chair) of Delta Gamma.
What's your favorite thing about your job right now?
Media Bridge is my first time ever working with a female CEO, a mostly-female leadership team, and an all-female department. Previously, I'd always worked for men and with men, and I was usually the only woman at the table - and that's my comfort zone, by the way, because I was the youngest and only girl in my family full of boys. I found a lot of pride being the trailblazing female, but the empowerment that bleeds out of every pore in our space is unlike anything I've ever felt.
What are some of the challenges you face from day to day and how do you deal with them?
Imposter syndrome never really goes away. In case you're not familiar with that term, it's the little voice that says things like, "What do you think you're doing here?" and "Who do you think you are?" and "You're not good enough for this." When I was just starting out, I thought these voices were real and that they belonged to everyone around me. As I've gotten older, I now realize these voices are my own self-doubt and irrational fears. I do a writing exercise that helps me embrace my own insecurities by first listing three things that are freaking me out and then five things that I'm in total control of. Sometimes writing out the things you're scared of makes you realize how silly they are.
Do you still get nervous before going out on stage? What are some tips to be a better public speaker?
Of course I do! But, for me, what's scarier than going out on stage is not having a chance to share the message on my heart. Seriously, while some people would rather get brutally murdered by a shark than go anywhere near public speaking, I feel like I'm going to die if I don't get out there and serve the world.
My first tip is to know who you're talking to and to imagine them in your mind, with every single word. This will help you avoid sounding like you're reading a script or talking AT your people. The second tip is to own your story. You shouldn't have to read from a sheet of paper to talk about your own memories. Lastly, never introduce yourself with a question mark.
What's the best on-air advice you've ever been given?
Learn how to do everything in and around your field. Before I started working on the air as a television host, I learned how to produce, write, edit, shoot and promote all of my own content and owned all of the equipment to make it possible. It set me apart from other talent, who only knew how to smile and read scripts, and it allowed for me to call out lazy work and/or appreciate the time that went into making work look easy.
What charitable causes do you care about?
I started volunteering with Special Olympics when I was ten years old, and I've been a Special Olympics gymnastics coach since I was 15. I now serve on the Young Professionals Board as the Marketing Chair for Special Olympics Minnesota and am taking beginner's sign language to better communicate with some of my friends.
I also have a long-haired chihuahua named Penelope Cruz from Secondhand Hounds (also one of my clients and dear friends). Around the holidays, I have a special place in my heart for Best Christmas Ever.
What's your biggest pet peeve?
When people send me messages inviting me to coffee without any sort of context. Imagine if stranger called you from an unknown number without introducing themselves and said, "Hey, I saw you online, can we go to coffee?"
When reaching out to someone new, it's so important to introduce yourself (full name, what you do, where you work, etc.), why you're reaching out (mutual friends, special events, a tug on your heart, etc.) and what you need from me (career advice, connections, coaching, friendship, etc.). Any specific examples are also wonderful, rather than something vague like, "I just feel like we'd have a lot in common."
If it wasn't an issue, I wouldn't have created this post. Like I said, I want to help you.