Kaitlyn Pacheco

Why Coaching Is Your Most Powerful Tool: With Kaitlyn Pacheco

Last week on The Frame of Mind Coaching™ Podcast, we spoke about an issue that many companies have been struggling with: recruitment and retention. Today we are diving even deeper into this topic.

Kaitlyn Pacheco is the Program and Project Manager at Rogers Communications, and she comes to the show to talk about her past experience in recruitment. Though she’s no longer in that position, situations from her last job have her questioning her leadership skills.

She is eager to support the new talent on her team, and though she may not know it, she is already a leader. What she may be missing is a very powerful tool: coaching!

Episode Transcript

[00:00:00] Kim Ades: Hello, hello. My name is Kim Ades, I am the president and founder of Frame of Mind Coaching and the Co-founder of The Journal That Talks Back. You have just joined The Frame of Mind Coaching Podcast, where we invite leaders from all over the world to come onto the podcast and get coached live and in-person.

Today, I'm super excited to have someone from my own hometown. Her name is Kaitlyn Pacheco and she is with a company called Rogers Communications. If you're not from Canada, that might sound uninteresting or irrelevant, but as a huge company, and she is involved with talent acquisition. And so we are super excited to have her here. I want to talk about talent acquisition and anything going on for her. Kaitlyn, welcome.

[00:00:51] Kaitlyn Pacheco: Thank you so much for having me. I'm so excited. I've been looking forward to this for a couple of weeks now. So really, really excited to talk to you today.

[00:00:59] Kim Ades: So when-- And I just want to stay on the subject of talent acquisition for a minute, and then we'll jump into whatever you want to talk about, but what is going on out there in the world of talent acquisition? I mean, we're doing a lot of work with companies, helping them with the recruiting and retention of their younger staff. What are you seeing in the world? Is it a challenge? What is happening?

[00:01:26] Kaitlyn Pacheco: Yeah, definitely a challenge. I don't know what's happening. I wish I had like an answer for that, but I'm sure you've heard of, and maybe some of your listeners have heard of the great resignation that's been happening recently.

I feel like, just from my seat in Canada, I've seen it a little bit more so happening in the States, but I think it's making its way up here. I think the great resignation is happening here too. I'm seeing it firsthand. We've had a lot of people drop off from my team specifically, I know a lot of the teams that we support are seeing a lot of people leaving as well.

And it's not the same as what you may have seen in the past where people will leave because they're got another offer, maybe it's for more money or closer to home, or, you know, something to make it make sense for them to leave. People now are leaving their jobs with nothing else lined up.

They're just burnt out and they're saying, "you know what? I've had enough, I've had enough change, I've had to be resilient through change throughout the pandemic", and maybe now there's some changes happening in the company or on their team. And they're like, "that's it. I need to take care of me".

And so people are just leaving and taking some time to themselves, which is great. I think it's really good that people are starting to realize that you need to take care of yourself and it's not just go, go, go all the time.

But it is putting the talent acquisition function and a bit of a bind. We're definitely struggling as an industry, not just me at Rogers, but I think recruitment and talent acquisition in general is struggling to find and retain top talent right now.

[00:03:05] Kim Ades: Let me ask you a question, and again, then we'll jump into you, I promise.

[00:03:09] Kaitlyn Pacheco: Sure.

What is the relationship for you between acquisition and retention? You're out there to bring people on board, but then you hand them off. Do you have any role to play or anything to say, any impact on retention? Or is it completely out of your hands?

That's such a great question. I'll speak to my experience specifically at Rogers because we have-- you know, Rogers is huge, you have like 22,000 employees. So we have teams that are dedicated to that a little bit more heavily, I would say, than the talent acquisition team. So when we're acquiring talent, of course, we're keeping them warm and engaged throughout the entire recruitment process.

But when it comes time that they start in their role, it's kind of out of talent acquisitions hands. I would say maybe in a smaller company, the recruiter might still be in touch and maybe have a little bit more to do with that.

But in my experience, and I've always worked for quite large companies, we have like our onboarding team, really walks them through the time between they sign their offer and the time that they actually start in the role. So they keep them engaged with learning and training and orientations and things like that.

But once they actually start in the role, it really comes down to their direct manager or their trainer, if it's a frontline role, to keep them engaged and keep them excited about the work. We have a ton of employee programs terminally as well, where you can get paired with mentors or, you know, we have a lot of wellness programs.

Like, there really are a lot of amazing offerings that I think do a great job of retaining the talent. They've just had to be put in overdrive recently with everybody kind of going [chuckles]. So it has been a challenge. But yeah, to answer your question, recruitment is kind of out of our hands after they've been recruited.

[00:04:56] Kim Ades: You mean retention. Retention is out of your hands.

[00:04:58] Kaitlyn Pacheco: Retention! Yeah, sorry.

[00:04:59] Kim Ades: And let me ask you this. Given the great resignation, is it hard to find talent?

[00:05:09] Kaitlyn Pacheco: I'll say it's not necessarily hard to find it, but we have to know that that one person, that talented person that we've connected with, they're having conversations with maybe five or six other companies at the same time, they have at least three offers on the table when I'm extending--

Well, not me, I'm not recruiting anymore, but when my colleagues are extending offers, they know that the person they're offering this role to has at least three other offers on the table at that time. And that's just the nature of it. It's a candidate driven market right now.

[00:05:40] Kim Ades: What do you think is the critical issue or the critical choice that they have to make that allows them to choose Rogers? Like, what's the one criteria that they say, "yes, that's going to push me over the edge. That's the way to go"?

[00:05:56] Kaitlyn Pacheco: Yeah. And that's something that--

[00:05:58] Kim Ades: Is it salary? Or is it something else?

[00:06:01] Kaitlyn Pacheco: It's definitely a combination of things. Salary's huge. Salary... People want to know that they are making their worth in terms of money, that people know what value they bring and they want to be compensated accordingly, and it's only fair. But there are a lot of other offerings, I think, that go into an offer for a position in terms of total compensation.

So maybe not just the base salary, but also considering what the bonus structure is. If it's a commission-based role, just total compensation in general. And also thinking about benefits. What is the benefits plan like? So me, as a candidate, if I were a candidate in the market right now interviewing for roles, those would be the questions I'd ask at that point in the process, when we get down to the offer.

I want to understand what does, what does it look like for me? What's in it for me as an employee from a total compensation perspective, as well as employee programs, that is something that's become really important to me over time is seeing, what's available to me as an employee of this company that I might not otherwise have.

For example, at Rogers there's a huge focus on wellness and wellbeing, and that's something I love so much about working at Rogers is how emphasized that is. And it's encouraged that everybody really take the time to make sure you're well.

[00:07:20] Kim Ades: Yeah.

[00:07:20] Kaitlyn Pacheco: We have exclusive premium access to Headspace, which is an amazing app. It has meditations, guided meditations, and it's something I use now that I don't think I would have probably thought to sign up for, had I already had it.

[00:07:37] Kim Ades: We definitely want to introduce Rogers to The Journal That Talks Back, but we will talk about that later.

[00:07:43] Kaitlyn Pacheco: Sounds good. [Chuckles]

[00:07:44] Kim Ades: Let's switch gears for a brief moment. What is your greatest challenge? Let's offer you some support right now.

[00:07:50] Kaitlyn Pacheco: Thank you! It's actually perfectly in line with what we were just talking about. We have had a lot of people from my team resigning, and some people are leaving for other opportunities, some people are leaving just to take a break, we have a couple people on leave, just a mental break.

And so my focus right now is, how do I support the team that's still here? How do I support them through all this change? I'm not a people leader right now. I'm a program and project manager. I lead people through projects that we're working on, so we'll have project groups where we work together to, you know, I manage the program or the project and then the people on the team will execute towards our goals and deliverables.

But in terms of direct report relationships, I don't have any. But it's in my nature, I think, to be nurturing and to want to have a team that I can support. And so that's part of my development plan, that's something I'm looking to do, I think, and part of my development plan is deciding, is that really what I want?

Do I want direct reports? Do I want to take on a team? I don't know, so that's kind of something I'm discovering on my own, but in my time right now, I'm very concerned with supporting the team. I'm a very supportive person outside of work. I also work as a doula--

[00:09:15] Kim Ades: So let's back up. And I'm sorry, I just cut you off, but I want to back up for a minute. So I want to just clarify, is your challenge the fact that people are leaving and suddenly you're left behind? Or is the challenge that people are leaving and whoever is left behind is struggling and you want to support them?

[00:09:33] Kaitlyn Pacheco: It's more the second thing that you just mentioned. I want to be here to support the team in the way that they need support, because I might think like, oh, why don't I just throw a whole bunch of offerings at them and let them know "why don't you use Headspace?" And blah, blah, blah. But if that's not how they want to be supported, then nobody's winning.

So I want to be able to get down to the point where I can understand where they're coming from and where their struggles are. And people are not always open to being totally transparent about how they're feeling in times of change like this. And I think that's what I'm seeing a little bit of right now.

But going back to what I was saying is that I like to support people, just kind of in my nature, I'm a doula outside of my work with Rogers and that literally translates to support. So, my challenge, I guess, right now is, how do I meet the team where they're at if they're not feeling totally comfortable to say exactly how they're feeling?

I feel there is kind of a political game that people play just by the nature of things. So how do I get down to understanding where they're at and providing them the support that they need? I'm realizing that not only are things changing, we've had executive level changes, we've had leadership changes on our team, and now some people have left. It's a lot. There's a lot that people are managing and having to say goodbye to their friends, too, right? People that you work with every day.

[00:11:00] Kim Ades: It sounds like what you're saying is you're seeing a lot of struggle in front of you. And you're not really sure what the best way is to approach that struggle.

[00:11:12] Kaitlyn Pacheco: I don't know if struggle is the right term, because I don't think it's, as obvious as that, it doesn't feel like I don't see a clear struggle...

[00:11:22] Kim Ades: It's not overt.

[00:11:23] Kaitlyn Pacheco: Yeah, it's not overt. It's more, my intuition is saying, I feel like people might need some support. Because I feel like sometimes I need some support where it's like, we've had to be resilient to change for so long, like I was saying earlier, with the pandemic and then with the executive leader changes, our own leaders changing. And so how do I help build that change resilience in my team? And how do I try and limit the amount of burnout? The resilience burnout, because they've had to be resilient for so long.

[00:11:52] Kim Ades: Yeah. So it's interesting because you're really talking about two things. And the first thing is you mentioned it just a second ago, which is you said "I need support too sometimes". And so the first thing is making sure you're in a stable, steady place, right? You need to take care of yourself first. And the question is, how do you do that?

But the fact that you're a doula also tells me that you want more than just... You want to offer more support than just being a good friend or being a good ear. You want to acquire some really strong skills to bring back to the table. That's what it sounds like to me. Am I getting it right?

[00:12:31] Kaitlyn Pacheco: Definitely. Yeah, you're hitting the nail on the head. I want to be able to bring tools to the team to say, "I'm here to listen, I'm here to help you, and anytime you want to talk, I'm here. But if you don't feel comfortable coming to somebody, here's what you can do on your own. Here's how you can help yourself".

[00:12:48] Kim Ades: Let's move back, right? Because you're talking about resources. "If you want to talk, I'm here. If you don't want to talk, here are some resources", and all of that is great. Wonderful. But I want to narrow in, on one thing, which is your skillset.

[00:13:01] Kaitlyn Pacheco: Okay.

[00:13:01] Kim Ades: And so have you ever gone to someone and say, "Hey, I'm here if you want to talk" and then they never ask you?

[00:13:08] Kaitlyn Pacheco: Yeah, sure. That happens.

[00:13:09] Kim Ades: Right? And I know for me, when someone says to me, "Hey, I'm here if you want to talk", I'm like, "thank you", but I don't tap into that opportunity. But if someone's in front of me and they just show some interest and they ask some questions and they're compassionate, suddenly I spill. You know what I mean?

[00:13:26] Kaitlyn Pacheco: Definitely.

[00:13:27] Kim Ades: So it's not just about offering your availability, it's about really acquiring the skills that you need in the moment. And I will call those coaching skills. Okay? So what you're seeing right now is me asking you a whole bunch of questions and coming to a point. And the point was the point where I said, "is this what you're looking for?" And you said "you hit the nail on the head". That was me coaching, by the way. Because the minute that I hit the nail on the head, you're ready to hear me.

[00:13:58] Kaitlyn Pacheco: Yeah.

[00:13:59] Kim Ades: Do you see what I'm saying?

[00:14:01] Kaitlyn Pacheco: Absolutely.

[00:14:02] Kim Ades: And by me hitting the nail on the head, there's a term for what that is, it's called encapsulating. So what I'm encapsulating, what I'm hearing from you and why that matters to you on an emotional level. When I get that, when I capture that, when I'm able to say, "is this what it is?" And you say, "yes", now we can move you to a new place.

But for you, the new place is "I need to learn how to coach". Because even if, earlier, you said "I'm not a people leader", of course you are. Right? Just because you're in this environment and you're surrounded by people, you're always in a position to lead people. Even if you're managing projects.

I want to make a distinction between managing and leading. In managing projects, you know, you're making them happen, you're moving them forward, you're managing projects, but you're still leading people. And you lead people, first through your own example, but then secondly, by the skillset, you bring to the table.

And it sounds to me like you already have a pretty good skillset, but you're not even aware of it. And it also sounds to me like what you need is a little bit of training in the area of coaching. And so there are lots of programs, lots of services out there. We provide training in the area of coaching. So that's something we could talk about.

But the idea here is that you have a deep desire to be supportive to people and simply by making yourself available, it doesn't do what you're trying to do, which is truly connect with other people.

[00:15:45] Kaitlyn Pacheco: Yeah.

[00:15:46] Kim Ades: And not just make yourself available, but provide the environment where they feel comfortable in opening up and sharing and leaning in on you for that support. Right? So it's a skillset that you can acquire because you have the nature easily to do that. Does that make sense?

[00:16:09] Kaitlyn Pacheco: Yeah, definitely.

[00:16:11] Kim Ades: When I say you can learn how to coach, does that turn you on? Or does that... Do you say, "oh, no, not another thing"?

[00:16:19] Kaitlyn Pacheco: [Laughs] A bit of both. It does get me excited because I think that is a skillset that I want to add to my tool belt, so to speak. But there is a lot going on, like... There's a lot going on personally, at work, so another thing to like, put into my calendar, you know, devote this time, is a lot.

[00:16:37] Kim Ades: So I would not actually put that into your calendar yet. And so again, just to take a step back, whenever someone comes to me and says, "I'm interested in learning how to coach", because a lot of people tap on me for that, they want to know what's the best way to go about that, I say the best way to learn how to coach is taking the first step. And taking the first step means getting coached and having exposure to an amazing coach and having that journey, and kind of cleaning yourself up a bit before you go into coaching others.

When you say "there's a lot going on for me personally and professionally", again, it sounds like a little turbulence, maybe a lot of turbulence, I'm not sure, but we want to settle that turbulence for a moment, and then learn the coaching skills because what's incredible, from my perspective, is going through coaching, having this really transformative experience and then learning what just happened because you have a reference point.

A lot of coaches don't have that, they just go and learn how to coach without a solid reference point, without saying, "this is what happened to me, and when I look back and deconstruct it, I understand exactly what happened, how it happened, why it happened, the philosophy behind it, the process, the mechanisms, and all of that". It makes your learning so much more effective and so much more powerful.

So if I were to give you one piece of advice, not coaching, just advice, it would be find yourself an amazing coach and start there, because that will absolutely undeniably change your life.

[00:18:17] Kaitlyn Pacheco: It's great advice.

[00:18:19] Kim Ades: I know it's a little biased.

[00:18:20] Kaitlyn Pacheco: [Laughs]

[00:18:21] Kim Ades: I don't usually get a chance to have a conversation like this with someone on the podcast, but truly if you were interested in coaching start with finding yourself, the most amazing coach you can find.

And I will tell you something, a lot of people have some discomfort with the idea of coaching because it's pricey, they're not exactly sure what they're going to get... Do your homework, study the different coaches that are available to you. Learn what their likes, see if you connect with them, look at their track record, look at their testimonials, look at their process, see if it resonates for you, but do your homework, right?

Like, interview a whole bunch of coaches. I remember we had one gentleman who interviewed like 17 coaches before he started coaching with us, and now he is a coach for us. But you know, do your homework. But I hope that gave you some idea of a starting point for you.

[00:19:17] Kaitlyn Pacheco: Yeah, definitely. I think it kind of at least cleared a path that I can start to walk down.

[00:19:23] Kim Ades: Yeah. On another front, I think that there's an interesting opportunity for you. And I would encourage you just to investigate, a little exploration. I think that what you said before, which is "we recruit and we hand it over", right? I think there's a huge opportunity to bridge the gap between recruitment and retention.

Right now, it seems that they are two completely separate entities in most organizations. And I think what happens is when you recruit and you understand the person you're recruiting and understand their motivations and understand their drivers, which is why they're going with you in the first place, somehow that gets lost in translation when they get handed over.

And I think that you're in a unique position to travel a road with your recruit and be part of their journey. And I don't think that happens, but I think there's an opportunity to change the game of recruiting and retention, and I think that you are a perfect person to look into that option and perhaps suggest a different path.

Maybe test it out with a few people that you're recruiting and say, "Hey, I want to try this out" or "I wanna work with one of our recruiters and do it this way" and see what happens. I just think there's a huge opportunity right there for you.

[00:20:48] Kaitlyn Pacheco: Yeah, I totally agree. It's something I've thought about too, because especially with frontline recruitment, recruiting for our retail stores, our call centers, that's a huge part of the metrics that we're always looking to improve is the attrition.

If people are leaving, why are they leaving? And how do we stop that from happening in the first place? And so there's been a lot of conversations from a program standpoint to think about what programs can we put into place that will bridge that gap, like you're saying, so we're still kind of strategizing.

We haven't really come up with a... I mean, we've come up with millions of ideas, but actually putting anything into practice is something that we're still considering. But I agree with you that there's a huge opportunity there.

[00:21:28] Kim Ades: And if you think about recruiters, they have a certain personality where they understand people at a different level, right? They have a personal touch that you don't find in other careers. And so we're not leveraging that personal touch throughout the organization. We're leveraging it at the front end and then we're stopping there. And it's just a thought for you to think about, and I'm happy to talk about that with you more outside of this podcast.

[00:22:00] Kaitlyn Pacheco: Sure.

[00:22:00] Kim Ades: But I'm hoping that you got something from this conversation. For those of you who are listening again, if you're thinking about your own coaching career or your own interest in being a more effective people leader, honestly start with coaching and start with getting your own coach and having your own transformative coaching experience.

Hope you enjoyed the podcast. For those of you who are listening, we love your comments, we love your feedback. Please keep tuning in, please send us some messages. If you have a challenge that you want to discuss on the podcast, please reach out to me. My email address is Kim@frameofmindcoaching.com. Thank you for tuning in. Thank you, Kaitlyn. We will catch you next week. Have a good one!

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