We sit down with Mentors and Mentees founder, public speaker, entrepreneur, community leader, social influencer and Living Corporate ambassador Tim Salau again to talk about his journey in landing amazing jobs and his perspective on the gig economy.
Find out more about Mentors and Mentees: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1094370437367284
Check out Tim’s LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/timsalau/
Connect with us: https://linktr.ee/livingcorporate
Zach: What’s up, y’all? It’s Zach with Living Corporate, and you’re listening to a B-Side. We’ve introduced the purpose of a B-Side before, but everyone’s episode is someone’s first episode. So for our new folks, B-Sides are random shows we have in-between our larger shows. These are less structured and somehow even more lit–that’s right, even more lit–than our regularly scheduled shows. You don’t believe me? Sound Man, I want you to go ahead and drop the air horns right HERE.
[Sound Man complies]
Zach: Okay, now listen. These B-Sides, we switch ’em up, y’all. Right? Sometimes we have a host conversation between myself and Latricia or Ade and Ola or Ola and Latricia. You get the point. Sometimes they’re monologues just with your boy or with Latricia or one of the hosts, and then sometimes they’re one-on-one interviews. And you can probably hear our guest laughing in the background, because we have such a guest and such an interview today. In fact, the only person to make two appearances in the same season, Tim Salau.
[Sound Man throws in the cheers]
Tim: I’m here. I’m here, man.
Zach: Tim, what’s going on, man? How you doin’?
Tim: I’m doing well, man. I’m doing well. Thank you for having me again.
Zach: No, no, no. Thank you for being here again. Now, look. For those who don’t know you or didn’t meet you the first time, I’m gonna ask you a few rapid-fire questions for the audience so they can kind of get to know you or get to re-know you. Are you ready?
Tim: I’m ready.
Zach: Okay. Where are you from and what degree did you graduate with, undergrad and grad school?
Tim: I am from Houston, Texas. I graduated with a psychology degree from Texas Tech University and a Master’s in Information Studies at the University of Texas in Austin.
Zach: How many LinkedIn certifications do you have?
Tim: I have over 200+ probably. [laughs]
Zach: And what is your tech area of expertise?
Tim: And my tech area of expertise is in artificial intelligence and user experience design.
Zach: What are your primary initiatives these days?
Tim: Primary initiatives is growing the Mentors and Mentees community and creating content that can help people in their career paths.
Zach: What companies have you worked for in the past five years?
Tim: I’ve worked for Facebook, Google, will be working for Microsoft. I’ve worked for the University of Texas in Austin, and I’ve worked for Living Corporate as a brand ambassador too. So I’ve worked for a lot of different companies. Oh, and Waze Carpool. [laughs]
Zach: [laughs] Okay. Now, folks, y’all heard those companies that he name-dropped, right? Tim, how did you land those gigs?
Tim: Honestly the hustle, really putting myself in the right position and being proactive in who I reached out to and sharing my value as much as possible, even when people ain’t looking.
Zach: So today we’re talking about landing the job of your dreams. Now, Tim, what are some myths around getting a job that young people and definitely minorities need to understand?
Tim: #1 myth I think I often see and see people follow is “I’ve just got to apply and I’ve got to chill.” Not at all. You can–like, putting your application through an application tracking system and just expecting something to happen for you [isn’t how?] you go about it now. Now you have to have a presence. You actually have to have a marketing strategy, some sort of approach in how you get your next job, which requires you to have an online profile, whether it be on LinkedIn or whatever profile, whatever online channel that aligns the next position you want to get, and then also offline networking, right? So really that myth that you just apply and you wait, and you apply to multiple companies and wait, are kind of like just shoot and pray. That’s a myth. That’s the #1 myth I’ve seen.
Zach: So you’ve had multiple amazing jobs. [laughs] My question here is why did you leave any of them? Like, what was the–what was the reason for transitioning from one to the other and, you know, what is your long-term goal?
Tim: So I’m a gig worker, and I’m glad you asked that because I think there needs to be more visibility on what gig work looks like. A lot of the work I’ve done in the past has been either from a partnership standpoint, and really the reason I’ve left is that, you know, whether it be the internships I’ve had or, you know, kind of like looking for a new opportunity to grow my skills and my perspective, but just kind of in search of understanding how I can go grow my skills to be the best community builder I can be. So I usually tell people I’m a full-time community builder, but, you know, I have skills and expertise in a lot of other different verticals, but my long-term mission is to be in a position to build communities. And, you know, that doesn’t really–you know, I already have the title that I want. It’s not to be a CEO or something like that. I’m, you know, kind of executing on what I want to practice every single day, but in order to do that I have to have a collective, you know, breadth of experiences that allow me to build a skill set, and being in front of the right people that will kind of, like, fire my vision, right? So, I mean, I’ve had a lot of great experiences, a lot of great jobs, but it’s been a matter of, like, growth. Finding opportunities to grow in a new area and kind of, like, start puzzle pieces together on where I want my future to be like.
Zach: See, what’s interesting about this and what energizes me about your career story is it’s like you have this ultimate mission that you’re driving towards, and the brands and things that are associated with you driving towards your mission are just that, they’re associations tied to this mission that you have. So talk to us a little bit more about being a gig worker and really how you see that playing a part in the future of how we all do work, right? Because I do believe, right, that the era of me saying, “Well, I work at Insert Company Here, and that’s what I do. I do X,” and you do that for 10, 20 years, whatever, that those days are coming to a close, right? I think that your approach on how you’re one structuring your career and how you’re navigating these spaces is really gonna be a larger framework for how millennials and Gen Y, how we work. So can you talk to us a little bit more about what you mean by being a gig worker, what you mean by, you know, being a community builder, and how that mentally helps you navigate these spaces?
Tim: I love what you mentioned. So being a gig worker, I think there’s a huge misconception around what a gig worker is. A lot of people think it has to do with freelance work or freelancers, but really it’s a matter of–honestly, man, the way I put it is, like, you a hustler, right? I grew up in an environment where, you know, my dad was working multiple jobs. My mom was working multiple jobs. The people that we–the neighborhoods that we lived in, there–you know, there were families there, and the dad and the mom were working multiple jobs. So it’s like this really had me–but understanding that, you know, you’re working to survive, but at the same time being a gig worker is a matter of, like, choosing what your career path looks like but aligning it to the purpose, in terms of, like, the purpose of why you exist, of why you want to work for a living, and I think for me it’s really a matter of having people understand that gig work isn’t just a manner of contractual work, but it’s understanding what are the opportunities I can pick up, paid or unpaid, that will strengthen my career, right? That will allow me to build skills in verticals, whether it be to become more technical or to build my social aptitude or my emotional intelligence, and see how that aligns to what your end goal is. So for me I actually don’t have an end goal, and that usually surprises people because I tell people I have a purpose. So my purpose is the fact that I want to strengthen the bonds that people share with compassion and empathic action. In terms of the position I claim and I usually want people to kind of see me as is that I’m a community builder. So I put myself in positions to strengthen bonds, right? Whether it be hosting an event, me organizing a function, me creating a community or me educating someone. I do that actively. Now, I’m not necessarily always thinking about ways to get paid doing this. I’m thinking about ways to put myself in the position to follow my purpose. So when it comes to goals and long-term achievements, that might change, right? I can’t say I’m gonna do this by 2025. The world is gonna be really, really different by 2025, right? Like, a lot of things are gonna change. So I can’t necessarily say this is gonna be my exact goal. I think a lot of people do that, but for me it’s easier to kind of follow my purpose, being a gig worker, and seeing how I can pick the opportunities, the jobs, the roles that allow me to kind of further my purpose. So where I see the modern workforce going is that a lot of people are gonna start doing more purposeful work, and it’s due to the fact that it’s so accessible now to start your business, to start your own initiative, to partner up, right? To really use the technical tools at your disposal, to really say, “Okay, I want to do this. How do I do this,” right? “And how do I find the people that will help me do this?” But better yet, how do I build the skills, right? If education is more accessible, you know, the ability for Gen Z millennials or people who are currently in the workforce right now to say, “I want to learn this so I can create this,” whether it be for the people that I want to serve, will only continue to get easier. So I expect that, you know, this is gonna be a cultural pattern, and we’re already seeing it, right? You have young influencers who haven’t even, you know, reached the workforce yet who are creating presence, right? They have their own brand. They’re working with large brands such as Louis Vuitton, Microsoft, who are doing all these great things, and their entire business is on social media. They don’t even have a–they’ve never seen a corporate office in their life. They’re selling e-courses. They’re using their presence to commoditize, you know, who they are and whatever their purpose is in, you know, the community that they serve. So this trend is–I mean, it’s all part of this whole notion of the digital transformation that we’ve seen happening in every sector, and especially from a consumer end as well.
Zach: So it’s so funny, right, because–the reason I’m at a pause is because, you know, the topic of this show that we’re doing a B-Side on was around landing the job of your dreams, right? But the conversation we’re having right now, I think having the premise of landing a job of your dreams–you know, if you try to find the job of your dreams, dreams and goals change all the time, but your purpose doesn’t necessarily–doesn’t change. Isn’t as fluid, right? Your purpose is something that is fairly solid because your purpose is who you are, right? So it doesn’t mean that–again, that doesn’t mean that your purpose won’t shift. It might change, but the degree by which your purpose changes and the degree by which your dream job changes are completely different.
Tim: Absolutely, and I think it’s a matter of creating the job of your dreams.
Zach: Hm. You know what? I think that’s gonna be the title of this B-Side, Creating the Job of Your Dreams. I like that. [laughs]
Tim: [laughs] Creating the job of your dreams.
Zach: Yeah. Yeah, yeah. No, straight up. This is good. Okay, look. Tim, this has been a great conversation, man. Before we get out of here, any shout outs you have? Any parting words?
Tim: I want to shout out to the Mentors and Mentees community. Shout out Living Corporate. You all are doing great things, man. The resources y’all are providing for people who are coming into Corporate America, who have been in Corporate America or who are trying to exit Corporate America is magnificent. Keep doing what y’all are doing.
Zach: Man, I appreciate that. Now, look, that does it for us, folks. Thank you for joining us on the Living Corporate podcast. Make sure you follow us on Instagram at LivingCorporate, Twitter at LivingCorp_Pod, and subscribe to our newsletter through living-corporate.com. If you have a question you’d like for us to answer and read on the show, make sure you email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. This has been Zach, and you’ve been talking with Tim Salau. Peace.
Kiara: Living Corporate is a podcast by Living Corporate, LLC. Our logo was designed by David Dawkins. Our theme music was produced by Ken Brown. Additional music production by Antoine Franklin from Musical Elevation. Post-production is handled by Jeremy Jackson. Got a topic suggestion? Email us at email@example.com. You can find us online on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and living-corporate.com. Thanks for listening. Stay tuned.