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Impact Makers Podcast with Jennifer McClure

May 24, 2018

Everyone’s journey to becoming an impact maker is different and unique. Today, Jennifer talks with business coach Ben Brooks, the founder and CEO of Pilot, Inc about his path from a rental car company to founding his own digital coaching service, aimed at democratizing career coaching. Ben provides some insights into how he has forged great relationships, created innovative products and built up award-winning initiatives throughout his career.

  • Ben is an impact maker through and through. Jennifer asked Ben about where his journey started and the key moments of his life that led him to where he is today. Ben talks about his “life statement” and his early formative days after graduating from university working at Enterprise Rent-a-Car and Lockheed Martin. Ben delivers some takeaways from what he learned during these years and his mantra for approaching new problems.
  • Whether its fate, destiny or just plain chance, inspiration can arrive at the most unexpected times. Ben talks about how working job at Oliver Wyman as a management consultant all started from reading a quote in USA Today on a flight home. After sending off a meticulously written letter, an ambitious slide deck, and a Singapore Airlines A380 model airplane to the right person, followed by a series of interviews and flights to and fro, Ben received an offer to start the next leg of his journey.
  • Sometimes a bold and targeted approach to getting noticed can be incredibly successful. Ben tells Jennifer his thoughts on the merits of an aggressive approach to getting your dream job and why within the context of modern click-to-apply recruiting technologies, makings a memorable impact is more important than ever.
  • Even in a recession Ben is a force to be reckoned with. During his time off from Oliver Wyman, Ben turned down a job driving a tractor in West Texas – found by his very endearing parents, and saw an opportunity for a rotation at Wyman’s parent company Marsh & McLennan Companies, Inc. Ben tells the story of how he ended up as there in talent management and some of his duties in his new role. For example, Ben created a succession risk index chart that had top-level executives sweating bullets.
  • Management consulting is an incredibly diverse field; you never know what project, industry, or region you’ll find yourself immersed in. Ben relays some of the greatest challenges and hurdles he’s had to overcome and focuses on some of the key concepts, tools and frameworks he uses to deliver results. He also tells the story of how he got his job at Marsh LLC (insurance).
  • While taking some time off, the entrepreneurial call found Ben Brooks in the form of a mislabeled nametag at a conference. Ben reached what he calls his fork in the road and decided to take entrepreneurship seriously. After getting some advice from some successful people in his life, Ben started building out a diverse coaching business using his problem solving skills from his management consulting background.
  • With the ambitious idea of democratizing coaching, Ben founded Pilot, Inc. with his life savings. While at first they focused on individual sales, Ben’s team now strives to help employers and companies cultivate and retain the best talent they have.
  • Democratized coaching? Sounds too good to be true! Jennifer asks Ben how exactly Pilot works and why it’s so effortless.
  • Satisfaction in your career – and your life – is unique to you. Jennifer and Ben talk about some of central drives behind Pilot and the larger questions that Ben considers instrumental in finding your own definition of satisfaction.
  • We know all about the journey of Ben Brooks but what does satisfaction look like for him? Jennifer asks Ben to shine the light on himself and talk about what drives him as an impact maker. Ben shares some stories about how Pilot has changed people’s lives for the better.
  • In the workplace, LGBTQIA individuals face adversity in all sorts of different ways. Ben talks about his experience navigating his career path as a gay man and the beginning of his trailblazing diversity and HR efforts at Oliver Wyman that have won various industry awards. He also talks about his contributions towards repealing the military’s Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy and the potential for creating change by taking a risk and leveraging your identity while in key positions.
  • Ben’s secret? Meditation. Ben gives Jennifer a peek into how he prioritizes self-awareness and being present so that when the wrong nametag comes along, he’s ready to step into the role that’s truly right for him.

Find Ben Brooks:

Great Read:

What Color Is Your Parachute? 2017: A Practical Manual for Job-Hunters and Career-Changers 

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