Is working in Silicon Valley in 2023 overrated? feat. Carolina Baquero PMM @ LinkedIn

Shownotes:

Connect with Carolina Baquero on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/hugocastellanos/

Connect with Hugo Castellanos on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/carolinabaquerov

Join our Discord Community: https://latinos-who-tech.captivate.fm/discord

Sign up for our mailing list and attend our next virtual networking event: https://latinos-who-tech.captivate.fm/email

Timestamps:

0:00 – Intro and catching up after a hiatus

3:46 – Interview starts

4:19 – Carolina’s background: Ecuador, DR, NYC

6:08 – Is Remote Work isolating? Does it have to be that way?

10:21 – Hosting meetups and ways to build community

11:40 – Getting Hired as a remote worker

13:25 – Why Carolina is so passionate about remote work: a personal story

19:25 – Is Silicon Valley overrated in 2023? Do you need to move there to work in tech anymore?

22:33 – Different company sizes for different experiences

23:54 -The Miami Tech Community

27:58 – Return to the office and conflict

30:56 – Productivity and salary stagnation

32:57 – How to find a remote job in 2023

36:08 – RemoteOK and async jobs

38:00 – Working at Twitter vs working at LinkedIn or a startup

40:39 – How to deal with imposter syndrome

44:09 – The brag sheet – a tool to help you remember your accomplishments

Transcript
Hugo:

/Welcome to a new episode of Latinos. Holtec

undefined:

my name is

Hugo:

After a long hiatus, we're back with a fourth season of the podcast. And I'm extremely happy to be back. Thank you for patience and thank you for your attention. If this is your first time listening to the episodes of Latinos who tech E this is a podcast about Latinos in the technology industry. I do informational interviews with folks that work at companies in Silicon valley. And across the world and I asked them about their stories. How they got to where they are now and what would they do differently with information they know now. So we speak with people at places like Google. Facebook linkedIn, Microsoft, all these companies, startups as well. And we talk about. Technology topics and career development. And my emphasis is in giving you tools so you can take your career to the next level. And in this new season of the podcast, we have 12 episodes ready to share with you about remote work aI. How to land remote job, all these topics that I think are top of mind for folks right now. And I'm very happy to be back. I am going to have an episode about the major life changes I've been going through. And that's part of the reason for the hiatus. So I moved from California to Florida joined millions of people working remotely. But a house got married. I have a whole episode about that and that will be coming up soon. In the meantime I spoke with my friend Catalina Marquetto in this episode. She's Ecuadorian, Dominican American and. We spoke about. In the meantime, I made this episode with my friend Catalina. Marquetto from LinkedIn. She's a product marketing manager working out of the Miami office and we spoke about remote work and her experience doing it. And before I, we go to the episode, I want to let you know that we have a discord community. For folks that want to meet other Latinos working in tech. And you can find that in the show notes for this episode. I also have a email list that you can sign up. And that will let you know when we host meetups virtual meetups or any online events. And if you want to give me feedback about these episodes, these content. The best way to do it is to write me an email. At [email protected]. You can also leave us five stars on Spotify. Or write us a review in apple podcasts. I'm always happy to read your feedback. I think of feedback as a gift because. The feedback you gave me. We'll help me do a better job. It's gonna. Help me improve my life and help me improve this content that I make for you. So here's the episode with Catalina. Maketto. Thank you. Welcome to another episode of Latino Su Tech. My name is s and today we have Carolina Vaquero from Miami and very excited to have this conversation. Yeah, we already did the episode in Spanish, so I'm curious, and how things are gonna happen in English, since we are code switching and we're gonna get some comments about that. People like, oh, why didn't you do it in Spanish? And go to the episode we did in Spanish and you can check it out. It's already there.

Caro:

Yeah. Thank you so much for having me. Thank you so much for having me, OGO. I'm so excited. And yeah I'm curious to see what the difference is gonna be between the English and the Spanish, and also because, I, we'll talk about this later, but we're different people when we talk to different languages, so that'll be super interesting. But thank you for having me again. I appreciate it.

Hugo:

You, this is your space. Thank you for making the time. I appreciate it. I know they keep you busy at LinkedIn, so we, yeah. Yeah. So tell me a bit about yourself and, how do you break into tech?

Caro:

Yeah, of course. So a little bit about myself from the top as well is I'm Ecuadorian, my entire family is Ecuadorian. I was born in New York grew up between Ecuador and Dominican Republic. I moved there, I don't have family there, but moved there when I was about 10 years old. Finished high school, then came to Miami to do college. So I actually went to college in Miami at F I U, go Panthers. Then I moved to New York for a hot minute, for three minutes. That's where I started my career. I started in book publishing. A lot of people don't believe that. They're like, what? And then I went to Twitter as a contractor for six months and that really was my training back into to learn about tech. And after that, pandemic happened, hiring freezes happened. Very scary time. And then in October, 2020, I started at LinkedIn. So it's actually. Two year anniversary, I realized this week on LinkedIn. This is very exciting. And

Hugo:

anniversary.

Caro:

Thank you. Thank you. And coming back now at during the pandemic, I also was one of those transplants, but I consider myself OG Miami, but I came back in 2020 to Miami and have been here for also the entire time I've been at LinkedIn. Yeah

Hugo:

you were at Miami before. It was cool before the crypto bros took it

Caro:

Exactly. I'm og Yeah,

Hugo:

That's awesome. So how is that situation for you, like working remote from Miami? While your teammates are spread out across the US and because LinkedIn is mostly in Silicon Valley, right? It's mostly in San Francisco and there's also that New York office. So I'm curious, how do you make that work?

Caro:

Of course. Yeah. I am very proactive in how I live our company's culture. First off, like at the beginning it was obviously very isolating and I find that a lot of people, they find it isolating. They feel like, I'm not in the office, I'm missing out things. I'm not seeing leadership, so maybe I'm missing out on my growth and my career progression. That has not been my experience at all. My team is dispersed across the us. We're everywhere. We're in Sunnyvale, in San Francisco, in Bay Area, in South California, in Chicago, and New York in Miami. There's someone in Fort Lo, also right here in South Florida as well. So none of us get that. Oh, I talk to my boss every day so I have a leg up. Like none of us get that situation. So that's on the Workfront. I try, I travel a lot. I love traveling. So when I do travel, for example, this summer I had a wedding at Sonno in Sonoma, and I decided to work from our San Francisco office for the entire week to get that FaceTime with our colleagues, get to know people, and I do that with New York as well. And then the kind of other part of it is that, of course you're here, you're in Miami, you're in your bubble, you're in York Islands, and it's a beautiful life. We, I get to go to the beach, it's sunny all the time. It's good weather. And I get to work in tech without having to be in Silicon Valley. But we found out that we have 60 people, 60 LinkedIn people in South Florida. So I've become yeah, it's a lot of people I've become officially

Hugo:

like your own Miami e r g if you wanted to like

Caro:

Yeah. And what we have now, LinkedIn has put together a program which is the Remote Community Champions for all the remote communities that we have across LinkedIn, across the us I think there's also four countries that don't have an office. And I've become the remote community champion for our South Florida people, for those in Miami and for Lao and West Palm Beach. So I organize volunteer events, happy hours, co-working. So I've, it's, I understand where it comes from. People say, I feel isolated. I'm a little, but it just takes more effort when you're remote making those connections. And I know I've made that effort and that's why we have such a beautiful community with our LinkedIn employees here in South Florida. So there's a lot, you have to be very active and proactive in how you approach this when you.

Hugo:

That's fantastic. And yeah, and to echo that, sometimes it can be lonely. I'm in Orlando, when it was that exodus of people that moved from California to the East coast, a lot of them do Miami, that area, south Florida, like in my case, my family's in Orlando, central Florida area. So to me it was a easier fit. So I did find that a bit lonely in the beginning. And that's part of the reason why we opened that Latinos who Tech Disor and Slack communities. And it's just so nice to have other people that are like you, that are Latinos working remote that also, that don't happen to work at the same place you work at, because it's because you know when it's 6:00 PM like I don't wanna open the work slack. I want to disconnect.

Caro:

exactly.

Hugo:

you do want to have that network of people that understand what you're going through and you can do zoom happy hours or just do lunch meetups or things like that. But I think it's been a great time for people that to do, local communities, explore actual meetups and see there's actually, I, when we were deciding where to move in the East coast, we picked Nashville for a little bit. So we moved to Nashville for a month because again, it was this part of the, it was 20, late 2020, right? So nobody knew what was gonna, what was gonna happen when were vaccines gonna go out. And we found this meetup in Nashville. It was called I moved here from California and it was all California, like California expats, meeting up.

Caro:

Oh, I love that.

Hugo:

And it's about that, right? Getting your bearings because again, you can look up online like how to transfer my license plate or whatever. You can look up that online. But then like, how do I make friends if I didn't go to college here?

Caro:

Yeah. Yeah.

Hugo:

Yeah. So that's part of the experience.

Caro:

even I can share moving back to Miami, two and a half years ago I went to college here, but most people left, my Dominican friends, they went back to Dominican Republic. Some other people went somewhere else in the US to live. And funny enough, I have this really funny story of one friend, really good friend, she's British and she lives in my building. She's right here. Upstairs. We met at a book club from our building, and it's. Everyone else is much older than us. They're like 60 plus. And then we saw each other and we're like, yeah, wow. You're the young person. And she's a healthcare economist. Like we have completely different disciplines. But that's how, you expose yourself. If I wouldn't have decided, Hey, I like reading, let me go to the book club, then I wouldn't have made those connections. And similarly I posted about our, on LinkedIn, of course, our meetup with Microsoft and LinkedIn, all the people who are here in Miami and someone from Amazon responded and said Hey, let's get together. We're doing a meetup with Google, with meta, with Salesforce, with this and that. And then we did this whole meetup with a bunch of different people from tech. And I just absolutely love it. A lot of them are. And we get to, it's Hey, let's talk in Spanish. Let's break bread. And it is really those opportunities that you meet people through shared interests through, Hey, we all work in this industry, right?

Hugo:

Definitely. Definitely. So when you landed your job, you were hired remote from the get-go. It wasn't like an a position that you need to go back to the office at any point. Like you're safe. You can stay, you can buy a, you can buy an apartment if you want

Caro:

Funny enough, I wasn't that safe. So when I was hired in October, 2020 I was a contractor and yes, I am boarded completely remotely in Miami. But everyone was still figuring out the whole, and we'll talk about this, the big. Return to office versus work from home, which is still going on right now at a lot of companies. But LinkedIn was still in Microsoft by consequence, of course. They were still determining what is our status quo, how are we managing this? And actually 10 months later, I believe it was the summer of 2021, was when we launched our hybrid approach of we trust each other to work wherever it works best for us. So before that, in like early 2021, I was thinking, are they gonna ask me to move to San Francisco or to New York? Like I really was like, Like over here am I gonna have to leave Miami? And I don't think from my team there was ever that expectation, but everyone was I don't know what's gonna happen and if we're gonna go back to the office. So when I heard that decision and that our hybrid model came out, I was like, okay, I can say Miami. And the reason it's not I already moved to New York for job opportunity. I already made that sacrifice and I'm young enough that I should do that again. But I feel like why? My family is in Dominican Republic. The flight is an hour and 50 minutes and it's just so convenient for me to visit. I go there like 12 times a year, like every month. And they visit me here. And it's just, it's all I want to work at LinkedIn. I love the company, but I also love my family and I feel happy here. So how can we meet in the middle, right?

Hugo:

So is that why you're so passionate about remote work or is there like another layer to this?

Caro:

There's a lot of layers there. And I think there's a personal story that, funny enough, most people don't really know of why I am just adamant that we figured this out in a way that is convenient to everyone. So the reason is, and this taking you back 2022, taking it back to 2018, I was working in book publishing and it was super exciting. I thought I was gonna be a book editor that I. Saw that was not just not my passion and it wasn't where I wanted to go. So while I'm working there as life would happen, big changes, things happen outta nowhere and literally like the floor is taken from below you. And I heard from my family, my mom had cancer and we were, she was in Miami, I was in New York. I'm in New York. Let me figure out my career and ambitious. And I'm probably what, 20, 22 years old at that time. So I'm kinda like, yeah, career, let's do it. And what happened was I talked to HR and during that time, this is pre pandemic, right? Remote work was the thing of this privileged elite who had the benefit and all of us were here. Like, how do I do that? So they actually said, I. Work remotely. I asked Hey, I have this personal situation. I really need to do this. And they said, no, because you're not in the office. We don't see you working. No. And what happened with my managers was that they said, okay go work in Miami, like once a when you, whenever you need to. I'm like, wait, they said no. And they're like, go, just go. I was like, oh, okay. So everything was really on the down low. It wasn't like allowed. So it was a really tough time. I was three weeks in New York, one week in Miami going back and forth, and this happened, this was like six months and then we can fast forward a little. 2019. I'm at Twitter, which is already in tech, right? I'm a, but I'm a contractor as well. So everything is still developing with my mom, like rounds and rounds of chemotherapy, me traveling back and forth. But still, there was an expectation. You're in New York, you go to the office. There was still that expectation. You go to the office, you're supposed to be here, we're supposed to see you. I was a contractor and I know you know this you just feel like you have to do more. You have to demonstrate your work. You have to just show up even more than everyone else. So I felt like I, I'm being pulled in two directions, right? I need to be in Miami, want to be in Miami, but also I need to be here to demonstrate that I can do this job to get the full-time, like the goal, right? And then fast forward again into October, 2020. I get the job after hiring freezes. I was unemployed for six months. I get the job on LinkedIn. I'm ecstatic. I love LinkedIn. I've always loved the product. I got my two jobs through LinkedIn, the one at Twitter, and the one at LinkedIn. Funny enough. And a month after I started at LinkedIn, my mom passes away. And the incredible thing was that the p the approach. So what I wanna put here is like the approaches, right? Let's put it into comparison. 2018 in publishing absolute no to remote work. And then fast forwarding October, nope, this is then November, 2022. My team and the management, the people management on LinkedIn, they said, look I don't even know what you're thinking about us right now, but thank you. So take the time you need, let's talk about it. We'll give you some time and then we can review. Do you wanna come back? Do you not wanna come back? But everything was focused on me. It was very people-centric. And then they said if you don't wanna come back, like just let us know, but we will work. Around you. And I think for me it's just this approach was like, wow. I was like I love the company already because of what we do, because of our vision, but now I'm like, I will be forever grateful to LinkedIn with how they took care of me during that time. And I think going back to the initial question, right? Why am I passionate about remote work? Because I feel like I made a lot of sacrifices to I had these two things in my life, being with my mother, but also I had this career, it was very ambitious. I wanted to be in tech and I need sacrifices. And I wake up every day and I'm gonna face myself for the rest of my life thinking, was this the right approach? Was it not the right approach? But, and I'm in peace with myself, which is a good thing, but I don't know that. After two and a half years of this experiment of us working from home, it is fair to ask people not only in this dire situation like mine, uproot your life and move to Silicon Valley. Take your family, your children, your partner with you leave your family behind or all of these things just to have a chance to break into tech. I really don't I'm at that point where I'm like, I don't, I had to make those sacrifices, but I wouldn't wish that on anyone else after we've proven that we can do this efficiently from Miami, for example.

Hugo:

Definitely. And very sorry about your mom. I didn't know that then.

Caro:

I

Hugo:

I'm happy that you could spend some extra time with her and, and cope because, for us it's family first, it's it's part of our values, it's part of our culture. And and yeah, that's how you know that you are at the right place, at the right team. Somebody that, people that will be sympathetic and will actually learn that, hey, if you are not right, you cannot perform. If like this is more important than anything else, so yeah, no, thank you. Thank you for sharing that story. And I'm curious then so do you think that Silicon Valley's overrated, do you think that it's like not necessary, like now if you wanna say, get a career in tech let's explore that a bit.

Caro:

Yeah, no, let's do it. I, and I can tell you I'm the sole reason why I moved to New York was because I graduated college and the job market in Miami was. Like a graduate outta college. There was a lot of us, especially graduating from the in business, I graduated in English literature, but people going into wanting to go into the same jobs and not enough jobs for everyone else. So I, I made that move to New York and in those circumstances, four years ago, a hundred percent you have to do that. And we've all done that and a lot of people conversely moved to Silicon Valley. But

Hugo:

did that in 2011. I did it in 2011, and I did it in 2014. I went to Sacramento. I worked with Intel for a year for a co-op. Then I came back to Florida. I finished up my masters and got a job back in Oregon. So I had to move again to the west coast. And then I got another job in San Francisco. Okay, we west coast to West Coast, and then I stay there, because I'm like, okay, like I'm not moving back again East West.

Caro:

no more

Hugo:

But yeah. But again but again, like I'm showing my privilege, right? Because I, at the time I was single, didn't have kids, and I could, just put everything in my car and drive out west, drive out west boy, drive west, find, it's like the gold rush, kind of thing. Yeah. Yeah. Like I have a story about that actually. I got pulled over for by a cop in between Texas and New Mexico, cuz my license plate light was out. And, it's like the, it is it's like Texas Ranger, right? The guy has like a cowboy hat and, and I'm like, I feel like I'm in a movie and he's asking me Florida plates, where you going? I got a job out in California. I'm like, oh, is that all your stuff in the back? Yeah. Okay. Good luck son. And he let me go. They didn't gimme a ticket or nothing

Caro:

Oh, that is so nice. It's like you're going to the land of possibilities. Good luck.

Hugo:

yeah. That's how it felt like that's how you, that's how it felt like. And it is to some extent, I, I don't, again, I don't think it's I think it's the right place for the right kind of people. If you're fresh out of college, And your dream job is to again, be that software engineer at Google or any of those manga companies. Great. Do it, get it out of your system.

Caro:

Why not? Yeah.

Hugo:

But for that mid-career professional, again, you have to, yeah, you have to balance it out. Does it make sense? Are you gonna get the ROI that you want?

Caro:

Right.

Hugo:

yeah. Like I know people that, and people like this too, that move from the doubling office in Ireland to San Francisco just because of career advancement. Just

Caro:

met someone who just moved from Australia to New York. Your job at LinkedIn? For them it's exciting. New York, but yeah.

Hugo:

But there are people like that. There are people like that. But in our case that we already live, like in your case, New York, in my case the Bay Area, for us, it's like Czech. What's next?

Caro:

Yeah. And I can tell you the many times I get this question because I travel a lot, I've moved a lot in my life. I've so many people ask me like, would you, because they know I'm so adamant about remote work, right? I'm like, they ask me, would you move for an opportunity if there was like the dream opportunity? And I just, honestly, at the end of the day it's it's gonna be a no for me because I'm already Exactly. I'm already in the momentum. I'm already in tech. I'm in a company that I like I feel like here I'm gonna be able to grow and I'll. Create the opportunities that I want, but I already did that. You know what it's done I don't know what amazing opportunity, maybe a certain company, maybe a startup. I don't know. And I never say never, but I know for a lot of people, no, not only myself, it's a sacrifice. You're sacrificing a lot, and I ask myself, do I wanna make that sacrifice again? The answer is no, most of the times. Yeah,

Hugo:

Yeah, no. Plus you already have your community, if you have your community, if you're building those roots there. Yeah. It's a, what was this for? Do I need to rebuild this again from the ground

Caro:

Exactly.

Hugo:

And I like to think that the next move that I make, I want to do it because, not because I'm running away from something, it is because I wanna go to the place

Caro:

exactly. Not because I have to for my career. Because when you do that, it is like you're being pulled in those two directions. It's I don't wanna leave, but I feel like I have to. And right now for me that I have to, I don't think I have to. And I feel in my position right now with our community, I feel like first we have a community that's building here. And I feel like I have a big le leadership role in that. And I like it. I enjoy it very much. And second, Miami is booming, like Miami is going to become a tech hub period. Either people like it or they don't like it, or they're unhappy about really high prices of rent. Things are happening here in Miami that are very exciting and I just don't feel, I think it would be a missed opportunity if I was like, right now, oh, let me go and so many people, move to Silicon Valley, like that's a regular thing that you do. But the way I am, I'm very adventurous. I'm very like, wow, what the possibilities, right? What could we build here in Miami as LinkedIn as our community, as everyone else who's in tech here who moved from California and New York? That it excites me much more than the idea of having to move elsewhere to having the opportunity. I feel like I have, I can build my own path here and that's exciting to me at least.

Hugo:

Definitely. Yeah. Plus there's something. Miami especially that it has, that is in that intersection, of it's almost like the capital of Latin America in a way.

Caro:

Is the

Hugo:

is like everybody from Latin America. Converges is north, most city of Latin America.

Caro:

Latin America. Yes.

Hugo:

Yeah.

Caro:

This is Latin

Hugo:

is funny like that. Yeah. Florida is funny like that. And and personal I have a lot of good friends, you included that live in Miami. But in my case, like it's not my can of city because like in Orlando, like I, I live in a neighborhood that's dense, it's walkable. I have a nature reserve right here. And and in my case, like that's what I appreciate. But again, if I was 24 and like I, it's my first tech job in Miami, I'm like, that's exciting. That's exciting. But but it depends on what season of life you're at.

Caro:

Yeah. And I think

Hugo:

but you're definitely, yeah, but you're definitely gonna see more of me there. Cause now that we're gonna have the high speed rail,

Caro:

the prize line,

Hugo:

you saw that they approved the high speed rail and it's gonna open in 2023.

Caro:

Oh, I'm so excited about that because

Hugo:

Yeah. So Bright Line is gonna go all the way to all the way to Disney.

Caro:

Oh my God. Oh, that is very smart. But also I enjoy driving, I love driving, but four hours to Orlando and you think about it like you have to think, you have to make a weekend of it. So having the train, that's just that's a great idea. And.

Hugo:

you're in a train with wifi and you can just do your email or whatever and Yeah. Like a Fri Friday. Just go up and you know you're your weekend.

Caro:

Oh, my friend, my British friend that I mentioned before, she's gonna be so excited. She's all about the bride line. I haven't been yet. She's oh my God, it's so nice. It's exciting, and I drank some wine and da. So I were happy to have you here more often. And what I was gonna mention, Miami, this it's a completely different city. Like I moved out, I moved away in 2017, and it was, It very much is, but it was like Latino America, like it was very Latinos and Latinos. They get into this habit of let's go to the same places and do the same thing. I was like, Ugh. And now this is California, New York, Western Europeans you literally need people from all walks of life. It's so exciting. So it's just a very exciting time to be here. And I feel like there's something happening. There's that energy of something new being built over here.

Hugo:

Yeah so that, that's something that the new talent that comes out of universities, they see that, okay, I have this job offer in Seattle where I don't know anybody or I have this other one from LinkedIn and I can be anywhere. It's okay I'm staying home.

Caro:

Exactly and it's happening. I know that companies are really feeling it. It's really becoming a huge battle between big tech and their employees and as much I'm gonna put that example out there that everyone's really tired of hearing, but the apples of the Amazons, which I admire so much, they're top tier companies, right? But they're like, Hey, you have to come back to the office, period. I don't care. Their offices must be incredible of course. But people have said, you know what no, thank you. Like you are great. But I agree too. I'm also great and I know that any other company who will give me the things that I want, that I prioritize, Will give me that flexibility. Exactly. I want that flexibility. And I'll go to another company who will give me that, and then there will be people who still will say, no, I wanna work for the Amazons and the Apples of the world. So I will move, I will tent right outside the office just to work at your company. So it is this

Hugo:

plus, working at Apple is borderline a cult. I've had plenty of friends that work at Apple and and to be honest, like I understand it because if you're building something like this, if you're building something physical, Yeah. Face-to-face collaboration. We need to laugh, we need to do hardware. I'm a hardware engineer by training, so I get it. You need to be in person. But again, if you're a SaaS company, if we are selling online courses dude, you can do that from b, you can do that from anywhere.

Caro:

From anywhere. And we've learned that, that is my biggest thing with it. It's the comparison, like companies are, they're thinking about the bottom line. They're thinking about we need to keep investors happening. The company needs to grow. Performance, productivity, paranoia, which is happening right now. And I understand those things, but also you're hiring human beings. You're hiring human beings who al also they've gotten a taste of work-life balance. Like true. Because before, I think before the pandemic, we lived like this, right? This is work. And we prioritized it and this was life. And we're like I'll leave it on the side. And the pandemic really did this, right? Because life was really more important than work. And we're not saying, let's stay here let's say, I think that's what people are asking. Let's prioritize both. I love my job and I wanna work, but I also love my life. And I think companies are no let's, let's go back to this one. It's no. And I can really empathize with companies having that mindset. But if we've demonstrated for two years and a half that we can do the same thing and we can be as productive as possible, and when we put our OKRs or objectives or key results and quarterback quarter, we're performing, we're meeting expectations or exceeding expectations. And what is the re tell me what the reason and give me the data that we're not being productive and we're not like our revenue is falling or something is happening that truly justifies us having to go back to the office.

Hugo:

Yeah. Yeah. I mean there's a chart somewhere and I'll look it up, that it actually shows how salaries have stagnated since stagnated, since the 1980s productivity has increased, like just shooting up. And I read somewhere that what was actually accomplished in the 1950s in an office in the whole week, it was something that could be done in six hours today.

Caro:

Wow.

Hugo:

So if so, like we're producing, when you look at all the work, all the busy work and stuff like memos, emails, stuff like that. So we could do all the work that an office from the 1950s could do in less than a working day today. Why hasn't my salary increased five times?

Caro:

Yeah it's really funny that you mentioned that because I just heard a podcast that set. I. It was a study by this economist at m i t and he still there's a lot to figure out, but he said that salaries have stagnated because of managers who have MBAs. They've seen like managers who have MBAs tend to pay their employees less or just not have like salary growth in that way. And that could be a cost why a lot of jobs have stagnated in the last few years. And I was like, that's an interesting concept

Hugo:

But again, if you have a remote job and you can make your California money while living in Georgia or or Colombia or for us

Caro:

Yeah,

Hugo:

Dominican or anywhere, that's the thing. But, so how do we get a remote job? With what you know now, how. Would you go about landing a remote job if you were fresh out of college or if you were a working professional right now and you were curious on, testing the waters? Because again, I don't want to commute or I have a family situation, like I have a family that I want to be closer to. How would you go about it?

Caro:

yeah, of course. I honestly, the approach that I've been giving, a lot of people reach out to me asking, especially because after the podcast we did together in Spanish they reach out to me like, Hey, how do I get a job in tech? How do I get a job remotely? A lot of them are here in Miami, and I said, look, job search can be really hard. You're like, you're everywhere. And I think at the beginning we all approach it like, I'm gonna apply to everything and everyone, and I'm gonna apply. And I feel like that can be very stressful. So determining first I am interested. Maybe roles where I already have experience and I can get this role. So determining three roles, these are the three roles that I'm gonna apply for. Maybe something that, two that you're already good at and one that is a little bit more aspirational. Something that I would like to do, but focus on three functions that you're applying for. And then I would say prioritize the companies. Which companies do I wanna work for? Like three, because then your mind space can't take so much, and that's when you start prioritizing. Okay, and this would be my approach if I was looking for a job right now, which companies align with my values and my priorities? I feel like for me, literally, this is my example, LinkedIn, of course. They literally, they're like work wherever you want. I don't care. Travel and Spotify, which also has had a very solid hybrid model. So I'm not telling everyone in this podcast to go online to those three companies right now, but it's determining which are the companies that align the most to my values and my priorities. And probably you're gonna have to do some research, or even if you get to the interview stage, I think the power dynamic has changed where we're like, just give me the job at the interview. I'll say whatever. But now maybe if you get to the point of a job interview, what is asking the question? What is your. Hybrid model, do you have a hybrid model? Are you expecting people to go to the office? Is there room from a remote? A lot of jobs now on LinkedIn will tell you where they're based. They have a lot of options or they're completely remote or they tell you which days you can work from. But I think that is a valid question. You should interview the company as well. So that's how I would go about, especially when we're talking about getting a remote job, it's gonna depend on the company and what their approach is to this whole discourse. Very complicated discourse. So I would say do some research on the companies that align to that way of thinking around this.

Hugo:

Definitely. And I think that something that I love about places like LinkedIn and Indeed and all these portals is the fact that they have embraced that and now you can actually check that box and Okay, I'm gonna look for only for remote opportunities. And I would say, to the two or three people that listen to this, that don't underestimate working at startups, if that's something that you're curious about. Because what I find is that most startups, because they have to be cautious about their runway and how they spend money. They're embracing this opportunity to actually hire talent globally and staying remote. So looking at a place like Angel List, woodwork. They have this or product hunt. There's also this one that I really like. It's called remote. Okay. And remote, okay. Is really interesting because they, yeah, like everybody knows the big ones, right? LinkedIn but remote, okay. What I like about it is that you can search not only for remote, but also for asynchronous jobs. So asynchronous jobs are jobs that they don't have meetings at all.

Caro:

Wow.

Hugo:

They actually have a hashtag, like hashtag no calendar. They do everything asynchronously. So they solve issues through Slack if they have to do presentations or share information with each other. They use Loom. So they record a screencast of them talking and, Hey, I wanna get your feedback on this. Please comment this. Here's a five minute video walking you through the initiative. So again, that, that doesn't work for all the jobs, but their jobs out there

Caro:

Yeah, exactly. And to your point, I should have probably said that working on LinkedIn, but you couldn't filter for remote jobs. But to your point about startups, funny enough, I've never worried that a startup though my experience at book publishing felt like startup because you wear all the hats. But anyway, it was interesting because my mentor he lives, he's in the Bay Area, he works at LinkedIn and he's from the Netherlands. And when I went to Amsterdam this summer, he was like, talk to my friend, my childhood friend go meet. And we had lunch, very nice lunch, and we were just talking about our careers. Like he's been in corporate, he's been in startups, he's in corporate, but in a startup model, like they're starting a new product in the company that he's in. And he said something that really shook my world, because I've only been in corporate within publishing and within tech. And he said, you really need to try different, Types of organizations, different sizes and that they operate in different ways. So you said yes, continue in corporate if that's what you feel comfortable, but it's just a different type of model. Like for example, in corporate, there's a lot of bureaucracy, there's a lot of processes to get things done. And in startups it's like you, you're just rolling with the punches, right? You're just like break breaking and innovative as we say. And he said it's just you're mastering different skill sets and it'll make you a more dynamic professional because you understand how to function and these tip different types of organizations and different types of organiz situations. And for me, I was like, cause I've only worked, I've worked at Twitter, I've worked at LinkedIn, but they're, in some way, the organizational structure is similar in how they operate is similar. So that just erupted my world when he said that.

Hugo:

Yeah, no, working corporate is very different. You actually have to navigate that social capital and again like you're responsible for such a small piece of the actual business,

Caro:

Yes,

Hugo:

but when it comes to a startup is, you have a problem, you own it. It's a much more dynamic environment and it takes a certain personality to be successful at it because you're always gonna have a hundred things to do in your backlog, always. So it's about picking, the right 3, 4, 5 things that you can do today. And again, and there are fires and I know in corporate there are fires too, like a fire drill that you need

Caro:

They're controlled. Yeah.

Hugo:

But again, like we're not gonna go out of business if the newsletter doesn't come, comes out on Wednesday instead of Thursday. We're not gonna go out of business. LinkedIn is not gonna go out

Caro:

exactly. It's gonna be,

Hugo:

the start of my run, three key customers and that's it, or runway, goes from three months to one month.

Caro:

exactly. And I'll definitely say even with the impending economic doom that is supposed to happen in 2023,

Hugo:

You need to stop reading the news. You need to stop reading the news. You need to go to the beach more. It's across the street. Go to the beach more. Come on. The world is fine.

Caro:

not read so much morning brew and just go to the beach. But I will say, because a lot of people are who are, if you're looking for a job and you're trying to break into tech, I know that there's a lot of talk about hiring freezes and things and slowing growth. It, I was reading that it's gonna be a really key moment for startups and they're gonna be like, Hey, you like super talented software engineer, product marketer. Come work for us. So it's gonna be the time of the startups. They're talking about there's gonna be a bunch of startups coming out. It's gonna be like a shiny moment for people to start working on entrepreneurship, new ideas, and graduating professionals from college to go and work at those startups. So keep that in mind.

Hugo:

So I'm curious on how do you deal with imposter syndrome or how, what's your go-to strategy that you try works for you?

Caro:

Yeah, I, you're gonna laugh at this one. I talk to myself a lot because we've heard about toxic self-talk, right? I can't do this, and I think I'm gonna venture out to say that a lot of imposter syndrome comes from I'm not capable. I can't do this. I'm, this is, I'm not right for the job. So it's even sometimes at work, I'm, I have a lot of things to do and I'm like, oh, I can't do this. But it's no, yes you can. Yes you can. And even I have my mentor, my sponsors, my manager, many times they say they congratulate me on something that I've done. And I'm like, no, it's, it's nothing. I didn't, and they're like, don't.

Hugo:

Yeah.

Caro:

humility is okay. And it, it's great. It's great to be humble, but you also have to recognize all the things that you have to do and have that confidence in yourself. And I, even my mentor, he said something to me that also rock my world. He's a Dutch man who's just like very to the point. And I said, he was like, oh you're like a leader. I was like, no, of the South Florida community. And I was like, ah, it's okay. Like I don't do much. And he said look, it's very important that you start owning it. Own it. I'm a leader. And then other leaders will see that, and they will see you as that people will start perceiving you because you are showing that. So that, that just for me, like truly believ. There you go. Kind of cliche, believing or yourself, but talking to yourself that way and believing and saying yes, this is the truth. I am good at my job. I am supposed to be here. A lot of that. And I can tell a quick story as well of my experience going into Twitter. I, because it was a contract role and it was with the staffing company. I never had communication with Twitter. Everything was through the staffing company, the emails and everything else. And so when I'm going to the interview, I'm walking through where is it? I'm walking through like health's kitchen in New York. I'm walking to my interview. I'm literally thinking I wasn't sure if the interview was with Twitter. I was like, but maybe this is a scam. Like it's not true or something. And until I didn't get there and saw the bird, On the side of the building, I was like, oh my God, it's real. And then I was like oh my God, I don't feel like I prepared myself mentally for this. And thinking back to this story now, I think that was my imposter syndrome telling me like, no, why would they hire you at Twitter? Like, why? You're just this girl who's working book publishing, like you're this Latina. Like why? What? Why would they want you to work? And I think that was my imposter syndrome of saying I don't know that if I deserve this, I don't know if I've done enough to deserve this. And yeah, I think that self-talk, that positive self-talk is a huge part of combating imposter syndrome.

Hugo:

LeBron does it, the ma the Marines do it like strategic self-talk. If it's good, if it's good enough for them, it's good enough for me. So now that definitely it, it works it works. It works. I like to keep a brag sheet, like a kudos sheet, like a, it's just a Google doc and I list, okay, what's the greatest thing that I did this month? And,

Caro:

doing that.

Hugo:

And I've been doing it for a few years now, and. It's great because if I'm interviewing for something, I can just look and pick, whenever they tell you, tell me a story or tell me a time when you had to X, Y, Z I can just open up my Google doc and there it is. That's great. And even when, sometimes you feel down, sometimes life happens and you feel like oh my gosh, am I good enough to do this? And, they invited me to speak at this conference and there's, it's 500 people in the audience and like I'm a bit nervous because I wanted to go well, and then I look at my bracket sheet and I'm like, wait. But I did. Sales enablement tour in Latin America, and I spoke to audiences of 700 people for two weeks every day. And I'm like, why am I nervous about 500th? Why am I nervous about that? And then yeah, but again, you forget. You forget, right? Because life happens, so it's important to have a common place. And I always say Google Docs just because don't keep it in your email because you're gonna switch companies at some point. And again, just keep it simple. Just keep it simple. And I like to update it monthly just because, trying to update it daily or weekly. It's it's too, it's such a small timeframe that it is hard to gauge,

Caro:

yeah. No,

Hugo:

and

Caro:

I'm so glad you mentioned that one, because I just started doing it because in 2017, someone I worked with in book publishing told me she, she would do it. She was like, I write down all my accomplishment and doc, and now five years later, I finally got in, got myself together and started doing it. But it is a game changer. And then you're like, wow, I did all of that. Oh, look at

Hugo:

Yeah, no, he, it is it's wow. Like I want to hire that person, dev. Oh wait, it's me.

Caro:

I've went oh, I wouldn't work.

Hugo:

Yeah. No it works. And trust me, if you, again, and if you have 10 years of experience and you've never done this, you know what works? How I would go about it is I would pull my resume, I would pull my resume, and I would look at its job and I would actually just, open two docs side by side and just go, okay, so what do I remember from the working at this place? What did I do? What did I accomplish? What's the cool story from working at this? Not what's in your resume that Oh yeah, increase sales, 10%, blah, blah, blah. No. It was like, what was like the one like key cast thing that you did? What's the one liner, what's the tweet that you would

Caro:

How

Hugo:

about working at this place?

Caro:

Oh, Twitter.

Hugo:

Yeah. Yeah. I'm curious on like how you keep yourself organized. Are you like a calendar person, you have a giant to-do lists, you're like a take notes person. How do you like balance all this out? Because you're a busy person, so I'm curious on what's your approach? What works for you?

Caro:

Yeah, of course. I'm just gonna disclaimer, I am someone who lives in my brain. My mind speed is so scattered. There's some always something. And even yesterday I was sorry, that going in another lane yesterday was doing a sound bath and you're supposed to just lay there for an hour. I, I would move around so much because my brain is it doesn't stop. So for me it is like I need to get all of that out. So I do have I, I write everything out and becomes, he's big to-do lists, but I think the more you can get that out of your brain, I even I'll show you. I have this little board that I bought, this whiteboard that I bought. My

Hugo:

Oh, great.

Caro:

the look at it. But that way I put everything out there so I'm not thinking about it. I have this mind space to actually do it. Just put it on the to-do list. Every time you erase it, it feels so good. Scr like literally putting it, like just removing it from your wherever is not as satisfying as like erasing it here. And the other thing that I do, I will say, I'm gonna recommend something that I don't do, which is very funny that I should do is blocking your time. Blocking your time. Especially when you're like some, someone like me, blocking your time is key, but the way I do it, because I don't know if it's gonna work for me, I don't know if I'm like that type A, that I'm going do that for every week for everything that I have to do. I do use a Pomo timer, so the Pulmon method, which is you work 25 minutes and you take a five minute break, 25 minutes, five minute break, and then you end up taking and that really helps me stay organized because that way, there you go.

Hugo:

you go. Yeah.

Caro:

I love it.

Hugo:

What I like about this one is I can actually set the time and I can see the time go by, so I just have it here in front of my face so I can look at it and I can say that, okay I've been working on this thing for so yeah, it helps me but I use it very strategically. Like I don't use it for, like I don't use it for this, I use it for stuff that I don't like to. Oh, yeah, I gotta do this. Let me, I'm just gonna do 15 minutes of this.

Caro:

Yeah.

Hugo:

when the time is up, I realized oh, I'm in a role. Let's keep going. Let's finish this.

Caro:

Oh, that's good. And the way I will say, the way I use it especially the 25 minutes, it helps me think, because when you have the huge to-do list, it's I don't know where to start. I don't know where to finish. But what it helps me do is how much can I accomplish in 25 minutes? So I say okay, I have to send these two emails so I can probably do this in 25 minutes. And then I have this deck that I have to work on. So maybe in these 25 minutes I can literally create the deck, download the template, put the title, and start doing some design structure. And then the next 25 I'll start putting the co. So it's helped me compartmentalize and break down tasks cuz I think that's what really overwhelms people. When I say I literally, sometimes my my to-do list says create deck. What does that even mean?

Hugo:

Where do I start?

Caro:

exactly. So I think it's having these chunks of time have helped me, like what can I accomplish? And these 25. And let me do this part and let me do this part, and which of my items in my to-do list will I be able to accomplish in this amount of time? So that's helped me a lot, especially someone like me who's like in everywhere. It's helped me just like ground myself.

Hugo:

Gotcha. No, that's very helpful. Thank you for sharing that. Something that I got this from one of my mentors is that whatever I write in my to-do list, action list, whatever you want to call it, is that whenever I write it like asking somebody else to do it. So I wouldn't ask you to create a deck. I would ask you to create a 12 page deck hitting this takeaways pop. So I have this apps called things, and I like, because each task has like a notes field, so you can put like more details into it and stuff. But yeah, but you can do this with any app. The app doesn't really matter. It's more about the method of, because in this case, what I learned is that you, when you're writing these things, You are writing them for somebody else, you're writing that for, you're writing them for future you. And then present me is a different person that future me, so it's so let's hope that,

Caro:

it.

Hugo:

right?

Caro:

Is gonna deal with it.

Hugo:

so let's hope that past me made some good choices.

Caro:

Probably not. Probably not. But I

Hugo:

probably not. But let's hope we're the best. But again, you only have to control in the present. So present me has all the responsibility.

Caro:

I like that. I'm gonna implement that one for sure.

Hugo:

Try. Maybe it'll work, maybe you won't, but you gave it a shot.

Caro:

I love it.

Hugo:

That's awesome. No. So Carolina, thank you so much for your time. I really appreciate this. And LinkedIn has this con concept of the next. Can you tell us a bit more about it and maybe share with us what's your next play and disclaimer like, we work together. So that's how I know this.

Caro:

No, of course. The hashtag next play. No, that's an excellent question. I'm I always say that your career is like an experiment. You never, I, I know that there's people who are like, these are my goals. I'm very, I'm a very open person to possibilities, like to react to things like things happen and be flexible that way. And there are some avenues I can continue to expand my expertise within product marketing within go to market strategy. And that is something that I definitely wanna do to like, be the best I can be at my job as a product marketer. But from my manager and from my mentor, I had talked to them and said I don't know about people management. It seems like a lot of work and a lot of documentation. And they said you have something key. That may help you in people management. Like you're someone who's has a lot of empathy, a lot of compassion, and already, like I they've mentioned you reassuring a lot of leadership skills with the South Florida community and it's made me think Hey, maybe this is something that I should consider that I could be successful in. And it's a completely different it's a completely different bus beast. It's a completely different skillset. I've managed one intern in my life and it did not go well. So for a lot of reasons that we'll probably talk about next time. But I. I would be excited to look into that because I think that being in that leadership position helping people make connections helping them, even what we're doing now, being like a coach in people's careers is something that I think I'm very passionate about and I think it's something that I could thrive in, hopefully.

Hugo:

I see that too. I see that too. I would love to have you as my manager cuz I see that, I see the compassion, I see the empathy. It's recorded now, so it's on the record. Oh.

Caro:

No,

Hugo:

But I say no, but I see those things too. I see them too. So I agree completely with that assessment. But again, it's an experiment, right? It's an experiment. Like the idea is that you go, you try it, do it for a year, you don't like, Okay. You can always do something else. It's we, our generation does not work at a place for 30 years. That's not our generation. That's not the, that mindset, that framework, that doesn't work for us. And that's fine. That's fine. He shouldn't have.

Caro:

No, exactly. Especially because, especially in tech, it's such a tight knit community that you meet people, you're always meeting people in different companies and they say, oh, I'm working on the super cool project and I love my company culture. And you say, oh, that would be interesting. Maybe like people just move around. And I know that for our generations that came before us, like Gen X and the baby boomers, they don't agree with that. But so far it looks like it's working for us. So I definitely feel like it's, you have to be flexible.

Hugo:

And I've seen it because I remember a lot of people that left LinkedIn to go try something different at Shopify or Salesforce or what have you. And after a year and a half, two years, they boomerang, they come back. Especially now with layoffs going around people. So keeping up with your network, keeping up with your network, your contacts, adding value to them, inviting them to events, that's important. That, that's something also that you have to take ownership of. Like in my opinion, that's something and authentically, like really, it's not transactional. Like you have to actually follow up and stay in touch and

Caro:

exactly. And

Hugo:

I'm a huge fan of LinkedIn and then working capability that, that it brings me

Caro:

we all are.

Hugo:

That's awesome, Karo, anything else you wanted to share? Anything else in your mind?

Caro:

No I definitely will say the networking is huge. There's a lot of in-person is coming back. So just what you just said about authenticity, sometimes not everyone is gonna be your cup of tea. You're not gonna be best friends with everyone. I feel like I've heard some people's approaches, like I have to force this relationship with leadership because they're the ones who are gonna have a say in my promotion and my growth. Just be yourself. Just be authentic and there's opportunities everywhere. Maybe you're gonna collaborate with your peer. Sometimes if people think, underestimate the relationship with your peers and people at your same level, like you don't know tomorrow. Maybe that person goes into a department that you wanna go into and they could be your manager. Or they open a new company and they say, Hey, got, I'm like, come work with me. So I think people underestimate, it's not just influencing up. But also the people around you, you never know. You never know how life goes

Hugo:

of course. Yeah. I agree a hundred percent. Okay, so we have a topic for next time we meet.

Caro:

next time. I love it.

Hugo:

That's awesome. There, there will be a next time. Karo, thank you so much. Where can people find you?

Caro:

You can find me. You're gonna guess. I'm sure you'll guess on LinkedIn. You find me on LinkedIn, I feel like.

Hugo:

In the show notes. Go ahead, connect with Karo.

Caro:

That's gonna be the best place to find me. I talk a lot about our Miami community, everything that's happening in tech here. So that's just, I would say overall look me up on Instagram if you want as well. But I would say LinkedIn is the best way to reach me and to hear about the things that are going on in my life and here in Miami or Miami Tech community.

Hugo:

That's awesome. Thank you so much Karina. Really appreciate the time.

Caro:

you so much Yuko. Appreciate it.