Mark Herschberg is the author of The Career Toolkit, Essential Skills for Success That No One Taught You.
From tracking criminals and terrorists on the dark web to creating marketplaces and new authentication systems, Mark has spent his career launching and developing new ventures at startups and Fortune 500s and in academia.
He helped to start the Undergraduate Practice Opportunities Program, dubbed MIT’s “career success accelerator,” where he teaches annually.
At MIT, he received a B.S. in physics, a B.S. in electrical engineering and computer science, and a M.Eng. in electrical engineering and computer science, focusing on cryptography.
At Harvard Business School, Mark helped create a platform used to teach finance at prominent business schools. He also works with many non-profits, including Techie Youth and Plant A Million Corals.
He was one of the top-ranked ballroom dancers in the country and now lives in New York City, where he is known for his social gatherings, including his annual Halloween party, as well as his diverse cufflink collection.
The Ultimate Guide to Website Traffic for Business
What you will learn
- The Career Toolkit for success
- The importance of listening to the whisper to discover your life’s purpose
- Which jobs robots can and can’t do
- How people should reinvent themselves
- What the role of the government, companies, and ourselves is in re-education
- The importance of aligning interests and skills with your next job
- The importance of communication, networking, negotiation, and ethics for life and business success
- How to reinvent yourself
- Why you should create an imperfect plan
- Why you should self test your plans
- Why learning from mistakes is vital
- Why discovering what you don’t like is vital
- How to discover your dream career
- Different tactics for testing your next career
Jeff Bullas: Hi everyone, and welcome to the Jeff Bullas show. Today, I have with me, Mark Herschberg. Now, Mark is known for being the author of “The Career Toolkit - “The Essential Skills for Success That No One Taught You At School”. I think that's maybe the little subtext. Now, what's fascinating about Mark is, he's gone from tracking criminals and terrorists on the dark web to creating marketplaces and new authentication systems. Mark has spent his career launching and developing new ventures and startups, including not just the garage startup, but also ones within the Fortune 500s and in academia.
Jeff Bullas: He's helped start the undergraduate practice opportunities program dubbed, MIT's career success accelerator him where he teaches annually. At MIT, received a bachelor of science in physics, so I think he knows his stuff, a bachelor of science, electrical engineering, and computer science, and a master's in engineering. He's certainly quite science-focused, Mark, which is great because I'm not that scientific so I'm going to learn a lot today, I'm sure. At Harvard Business School, Mark helped create a platform used to teach finance at prominent business schools, and he's worked with many nonprofits.
Jeff Bullas: One little thing about Mark that many don't know, we've all been told that white men can't dance, but apparently he's one of the top ranked ballroom dancers in the country. So, welcome to the show, Mark.
Mark Herschberg: Thank you so much for having me on the show and that lovely introduction.
Jeff Bullas: I want to talk about a lot of things today, and I suppose this goes back to, when did you get an interest in science, and when did that start?
Mark Herschberg: For me, I think it really started around age five. My father had a set of Time-Life books. These were a series of books they used to sell in the '70s and '80s, and it was the mysteries of the unexplained. I'd open these books and it would be about the pyramids and big foot and all these interesting things, and I just found it really interesting. Of course, when you talk about the pyramids, you talk about aliens, because that's what sells and was all fascinating. I remember when I was nine, my cousin, who was older than me and in high school, he talked about his physics class, and in physics learning about black holes.
Mark Herschberg: Of course, when you get to all the conspiracy theories that you get with pyramids and aliens, eventually black holes somehow pull into it. I thought, oh, this is what relates, physics somehow relates to all this cool stuff. I think that's what crystallized it, but I was always just interested in STEM skills, even as a young kid.
Jeff Bullas: Yeah, and I think certainly we're moving into an ... Well, we're in an age now where it's absolutely critical. What underlies almost any new technology is science technology, the list goes on. Fast-forward, you discovered a love for ... Well, what did you, like you mentioned, was conspiracy theories, which are alive and well at the moment in the world.
Mark Herschberg: Yeah. These were conspiracy theories about history as opposed to reality.
Jeff Bullas: Yeah, because I would sort of detect that there's a lot of parallel universes running at the moment and everyone's trying to work out which ones are real and which are imagined, but that's part of the family is you couldn't make this stuff up.
Mark Herschberg: Very true.
Jeff Bullas: Let's fast-forward. You're filling up with science, and then you went and worked ... Well, then went and did your degree at MIT. Tell us about how that happened and your experience there.
Mark Herschberg: I was a classic 1980s nerd growing up, did all the STEM stuff. I grew up playing competitive chess. Went to MIT and really felt like I found my home. It was a place where nerdiness was celebrated. Now, of course it's celebrated everywhere, Silicon Valley and in common culture, but back then, it was not so common. MIT was a really great place for me where we could just engage with science and technology and math all around you, and so I really felt at home and enjoyed being there. I think I got a really solid education in terms of these quantitative skills, in terms of my science and engineering, although there was definitely something lacking that at the time I didn't understand, but it came back in my 30s when I returned to MIT to help start this program.
Jeff Bullas: Right. You mentioned something to me, which I think is really important for all of us, is that you turn up somewhere and you're going, I feel like I'm home.
Mark Herschberg: Yeah. It really just, before then, never quite felt like I fit in, in high school. Look at any 80's movie, and whatever the nerdy kids were doing, yeah, that was my life. We were off on the side table, we weren't at the cool parties. We were socially shunned and that's just how it was back then. At MIT, it was, for the first time, a very different experience.
Jeff Bullas: Yeah. I think it's very important for all of us to find a place where we feel like we've arrived. Not that we ever arrive, but that is your safe place where you feel like you belong. I think that's really important. It's happened for me in my life too is, there's been certain experiences when this just doesn't quite fit, and then you start something and go, this is just fantastic. I belong. That happened for me when I started my blog about social media, was this intersection of humanity and technology that social media created.
Jeff Bullas: That's what excited me and went, okay, so it's not just science, because I'm not a science student, but I love humanity and the soft skills that surround all that. Social media was this intersection of tech and humanity, especially back in the good old days of social media, which I've just written something today about social media today. I think we're in the middle of a very interesting time regarding the role of social media and we're in the middle of this huge social experiment. The other thing that, and I think your timing is really, really good to be on the planet, because you said you felt really quite nerdy and you went to MIT and felt like you were at home.
Jeff Bullas: Well, I've heard the phrase, and I think it's true now, is that the geeks shall inherit the earth, as it will take on a Bible verse, so do the meek, it's the geek. Then I had a new call, I think it's much more celebrated now than it ever was, and you're right. Those that had their heads in books and weren't the cool kids were shunned. It's great you found your home. You got to MIT, you do your degree. Did you leave school after that? Or did you stay on and do some more education?
Mark Herschberg: I've never fully left MIT. After my undergraduate degrees, I went right into the master's program. After finishing the master's program, at that time, I didn't have a clear career plan, and I didn't know what I wanted to do so it hit out at MIT for another year as research staff. So, I spent a year at what's now CSAIL, the Computer Science AI Laboratory. After that period, I felt like I really do have to move on, and I did them start going into startups. But even then, I was still very active at MIT with ballroom dancing.
Mark Herschberg: I was on the MIT bar and dance team, primarily in my 20s, and it's because it's not a NCAA sport, that's a US Collegiate Athletic Association. Because it's not an NCAA sport, it's flexible about who can be on the team, and MIT takes a very liberal view of who's part of the community, so staff, faculty, alumni are all welcome. I would still engage and literally be on campus a couple of times a week. Then starting in 2000, I helped to start this program at MIT, so I was active ever since both in the creation of it and then subsequent teaching of it for the past 20 years. I've never walked away from MIT. There's a part of me that's always there.
Jeff Bullas: Okay. Let's go a little bit into your experiences in the startup scene, because a lot of our listeners do like to learn about that, and I'm slightly selfish, I'd like to hear a lot about that, frankly. Tell us a little bit about what happens over the next few years as you got involved in startups, both within the garage startup, as you described it, and basically the top 500 companies that were doing startups as well internally. Tell us a bit about your experiences in that area.
Mark Herschberg: When I came out of school, it was now an out of that subsequent work at MIT. It was the late '90s. I was in Boston, it's the dotcom era. That was a blessing and a curse. The blessing of course, lots of opportunities. The curse is well, lots of opportunities, and I didn't have a good way to filter on them. So, I wound up at a small startup that's a couple of years old, and wasn't sometimes that necessarily excited about. It was just okay, job out of school. In fact, I didn't even know I wanted to do startups.
Mark Herschberg: I knew I didn't want to work on Wall Street. I knew I didn't want to do big tech, which in those days was Microsoft, IBM. I knew I didn't want to do consulting, so this was kind of the default option. I joined, and I was very lucky I had a really wonderful manager there and began to learn skills that I hadn't learned in school. Primarily, those were programming skills, because of course, for those of us in tech, a lot of schools teach computer science, which is not quite the same as software engineering. For those who haven't done it, think of it this way, when you come out of let's say mechanical engineering program, and so you learn, okay, I understand how an engine works, I understand the basic mechanics, what a lathe is.
Mark Herschberg: I understand force multiplication, but would you actually take someone who's just out of school and say, "Go design the next car." Because building a car, yes, it's mechanical, but it's a whole scale that you really haven't focused on. You just know some of the fundamentals. Then software, the same is true, but back in the '90s, there were so few people that had any level of experience because the field was just blowing up. It was a lot of new people just leaving other new people and no one really having a lot of deep experience as a practitioner.
Mark Herschberg: I got lucky. I did find someone who hadn't been doing it for a while. I learned a lot of great skills from my manager and from some other folks. The moment that really got interesting is that company, the founders had a falling out, which turns out surprisingly common. I've seen it at many, many companies, and they split in two. The CTO called me into his office one day and said, "This might be a surprise, or maybe not, but I'm leaving, I'd love for you to come with me. I've already got these folks coming with me."
Mark Herschberg: The other founder said, "Okay, he's leaving. We'd love for you to stay." I said, all right, I guess I have to make a decision, because until this point, I had never even thought about my career. It's just, I'm here, it's okay. I code, it's nice, and I get money. I started to think, what do I need to do like, what makes us interesting? How do I pick between the two? I realized I had more than two choices. This was still the dotcom era. This is now '99. I started thinking about how to evaluate what's important? And then wound up joining another startup that I felt was the right fit for me. Now, this startup, this was closer to the garage level startup.
Mark Herschberg: It was five MIT students. They were literally in someone's living room when I met them, and they had some early code, but of course, at this time, you can say, "We're from MIT, please give us money," and a VC had given them a few million dollars. Now, by age 26, 27, I was a senior experienced person, and so I joined to start leading the team and we grew that company. We sold it despite the dotcom crash and everything falling apart, a successful exit in the fall of 2000, and that put me on the path to doing lots of different startups. I realized this is what I love to do.
Jeff Bullas: Yeah. Sometimes a journey is very winding, isn't it? You don't know what you don't know. That's the challenging part in life is trying to work out, where do I feel at home? I think there's one term we've discussed is, where do you feel like you belong? I think you've got to listen to, and Steven Spielberg described it beautifully, he said, "What should you be doing on this planet will come at you as a whisper. It will not shout." I think that is just so true. The terms used for this are intuition. It certainly is a whisper, that's what I've discovered. You can rush right by that if you're not careful.
Jeff Bullas: You got the whisper, which was, you felt at home in the tech science area, you started programming. What happened next? You're in this startup, they exited, where'd you go from there?
Mark Herschberg: When we exited, as part of the larger company for a while, and felt this wasn't a really good fit for me anymore. At that point, I talked to some of my mentors, and it's interesting you talk about this whisper, because I had gotten a whisper that it led to this parallel path. From here on out, there's two real paths for me, and we'll talk a bit about my careers doing other startups, and then also the parallel educational tracks. I'll talk about that whisper, but then go back to the startup track.
Jeff Bullas: Absolutely.
Mark Herschberg: At this point, I had been doing a bunch of hiring. I hadn't had a lot of formal training, but one thing I noticed when I was hiring, I'd ask candidates a technical question and they'd give me a technical answer. I go, "Okay, great. You took the class." In fact, they were all seemingly taking the very same class. There weren't a lot of software engineering classes at the time. This is about 2000. I had asked them kind of the same question, no matter what university, I knew what they had learned, I got the answer. But then I would ask questions like, what makes someone a good teammate? How do you recognize a good leader? And I would get blank stares.
Mark Herschberg: Because they were never taught this. I realized I was never taught this either, but I had taken interest in starting to learn some of these skills, and it's only because I put forth that effort that I had any idea what the answer should be or could be, and this was an interesting challenge and I was trying to find training programs to help build these skills, and I couldn't find anything. So, I left to do a few things. One, to write a book, that I ultimately wrote and never published for various reasons. Two, at the time, I heard MIT was trying to put together a course and it was along these lines.
Mark Herschberg: These were the whispers coming to me, hearing the challenges, hearing MIT's doing this. So, I reached out and said, "I've been dealing with these issues and looking at them for a while. Can I help with this class?" They said, "Yes." I came on to help them design, and they said, "We'd love for you to help teach it," and that led down that path. But on the career side and startup side, talking to my own mentors what we had decided, I was pretty solid on my technical skills by this point. I had been lucky somewhat. I got into Java software engineering. I started in 1996 when it was still in beta.
Mark Herschberg: I kind of rode the wave. Even though I wasn't the most experienced software engineer, very few people had more Java experience than I did. This is for anyone interested in technology, the great thing is, every few years, there's some new technology that comes out, and if you get in early, you get an edge because it's hard to find people with three, five years experience, but you were one of the few because you start early on. I developed very solid technical skills, but I felt I still wasn't as strong on these other skills as I should be. What my mentors had suggested is I should start doing consulting because that's going to give me a chance to take different opportunities that will build up these skills.
Mark Herschberg: I wound up doing this project at HBS. It was partially technology and partially the creation of this class, and wound up doing consulting, going into different companies that were just struggling and having problems and helping them fix it. Again, there were some technology challenges, but very often, and this is true in general and technology, the hardest part isn't the technology, it's the people, and it's the communication, the process, the understanding of what you're building, personality conflicts. I officially was there for technology, but I really was solving a lot of people issues as well.
Jeff Bullas: At the end of the day, it's very much about people, isn't it? You've got to build the core fundamentals, but then you've got to learn how to sell your product to people. You got to learn to market it to people. Then you've got to work on teams as people together to work together and make things happen. You mentioned that, let's take a little aside here, so tracking criminals and terrorists on the dark web, with the recent hack that was being announced recently, tell us a little bit about your experiences in tracking criminals and terrorists on the dark web. I'm intrigued.
Mark Herschberg: My graduate work at MIT was in cryptography. I've been trained in this. My graduate thesis, we often get asked about ... My thesis was secure electronic voting over the worldwide web. So, every four years, I get a lot of questions on ... Short answer on that, we should never be voting online. Paper ballots are the way to go. But I began with cybersecurity, at the time, the cybersecurity options were limited in the 90s. You could work for those big tech companies I didn't want to do, or work for the government, which I also looked at, but didn't want to do, and there weren't a lot of cybersecurity startups, so I didn't pursue that early on.
Mark Herschberg: But as we got to the last 10 years or so, cybersecurity startups became more common and I got back into it. Now, this particular company, it was started by someone who is basically looking on the dark web. The dark web, for those who aren't familiar with it, this is the web that is basically inaccessible. Part of the dark web, it's not so scary. The dark web is your bank account information that Google can index. We don't want them to, it's behind the login. But then, other parts of the dark web are things like sites on Tor.
Mark Herschberg: You need a different type of browser to get, or you need password access to get into a forum. What I always explain to people, the dark web itself isn't scary. It's not that a dark alley is necessarily scary, or if you're going to be doing something scary, like mugging someone, you're probably going to do it in the dark alley and not out on the street. Not all the dark web is bad, but when bad things happen online, it's usually in the part of it that's the dark web. So, we built a system that would go into these places in the dark web and start to gather information, gather who the people are, what they're thinking of doing, how they're interacting, the tools that they're using.
Mark Herschberg: We gathered this information, which then got sold to our corporate customers as well as government customers, and they use that in terms of their own threat analysis and security planning.
Jeff Bullas: Yeah. It's certainly a big area. I liked your mention of using paper ballots instead of computer voting, because I suppose the thing about computers is that, if there is an issue, it certainly can be done at scale, where it's very difficult to do it at scale with paper ballots. I think that's a great point. I'm going to do a little bit of a sod here because it's something that's popping up more and more in the conversations I'm having, especially with you in the technical area and business area. It's the increasing role of the AI in businesses, and then I love as humans. AI is getting involved in marketing, approvals of ads, what's seen in the algorithms. What's your take on where we are with artificial intelligence at the moment?
Mark Herschberg: Well, that's a big open question. Of course, artificial intelligence, we talk about AI in certain specific areas versus the general intelligence that can replicate a human. I'm going to focus more on the former. Now, AI, if you haven't worked in the field, it conjures up all sorts of ideas about very sophisticated algorithms. AI can be as simple as a basic if statement. If the person's test score is over this amount, put them in a certain class or give them a certain medication, and if it's below, don't do that. That technically is a form of AI. It's really trivial, but it is. Now, you say, well, we can do better.
Mark Herschberg: Yes, we could get multiple if statements, and then we can get rule sets that could be hundreds and thousands and hundreds of thousands of rules. They get more and more complicated. We have to look at, given the state of technology, what is AI bringing to us? What can it do? AI today, I look at as the early robotics revolution. Starting in the 1960s, and really in the '70s and '80s, if you were doing mechanical labor, turning a screw, we said, look, the robots are coming along. They're going to replace you.
Mark Herschberg: We know manufacturing got decimated by robots that can do repetitive tasks. What robots can't yet do is higher-end labor work. We see today in the US a shortage of actually that skillset of higher end labor. Now, what's happening with AI, AI can do some basic things. When you had a 23-year-old who would look at marketing campaigns and say, "Oh, I'm running three campaigns. This one's doing well. These two, not so much. Well, let's put more money into the one that's doing well." A six-year-old can figure that out. You didn't need the 23 year old. We can start to create rules that replicate that.
Mark Herschberg: We can also use what's called AI can just do things like some presumptive guesswork. In law, for example, a lot of lawyers, a lot of their time is just spent looking at cases. Okay, you have an issue, let me go look at case law. Let me go find what's relevant. Well, if you can get some AI that can just do some pattern matching, just say, based on the words you've entered, here are the most relevant cases. Now, instead of the lawyer looking at 25 cases to find the relevant three, they might only look at eight. That's AI. What we're seeing is AI is doing the more mechanical parts of our task, and it's freeing up time to do more. To everyone who's fearful about, AI is going to steal my job, there's a handful, right?
Mark Herschberg: Just like tollbooth collectors, they're god. We used to have them, growing up, I'd have to stop every few miles to pay the toll booth on the Jersey turnpike. No more. On the other hand, we have a whole bunch of other jobs like social media people. They didn't exist when I was paying my way through the toll booths. As AI continues to grow, it's going to take away the more rote mechanical tasks that we do and free up time where we can do higher order tasks. If you, as an individual, are focused just on those rote skills, you're going to be in trouble. But if you continue to advance your career on the value that you bring in your company as an employee, or that your company brings to other organizations, then you've got opportunity, and we'll continue to create new opportunity as each mechanical piece goes away.
Jeff Bullas: Yeah, I think you made a really valid point, is that humans are going to move on to more creative pursuits, and be freed up from the industrialization of the office, which we've had in the past after the industrialization of the factory. I'm not afraid of the robot, because I really believe that humans are meant to be creators, not meant to be machines. AI is going to help us to redefine ourselves. One of the challenges I have heard is the biggest challenge we have in society is we need to help people reeducate, and who has that role? Is it government? Is a corporate? Is it yourself?
Jeff Bullas: In terms of reinventing yourself. Now, that's a big challenge for a lot of people is reinventing themselves, so they don't get replaced by a robot, which is just going to take away their boring job, that they must really hate at any right, but we need to skill them up, so what do you think about that area of skills in terms of helping people move to their next reinvent themselves?
Mark Herschberg: You now hit on a very passionate subject for me. When we look historically, we'll take the US for example, over a hundred year period, we went from being a 75% agrarian society to 25%. 75% of the population were farmers, and a hundred years later, only 25%. We know today it's even smaller. When we think about that, grossly, we think, well, this is a good thing. When 75% of the population was just farming and they weren't very productive, we didn't have people to go be in factories or to be social media managers and do all this other stuff we benefit from.
Mark Herschberg: As we remove them from farming, because farming became more productive, and so fewer farmers can feed more of us, we freed them up to deliver more value. Now, acutely, there were certain farmers who said, "My farm is going under, this is bad." And they had a bad time. As we had this mass migration take place over a hundred years, it happened literally over generations. Some farms failed each year, but there's a small enough number that we said, not good, but we, as a society could handle that many farmers losing their jobs and their children would go on and pick other professions that delivered more value.
Mark Herschberg: We've seen with the blue collar workforce and factories, we saw factories peak mid century in the US and start to decline. There again, it's happened over a faster period, and we've certainly seen cases where town, they lose a factory and they lose a lot of jobs, and it hits an economic impact. What's happening, what we've all seen with technology, technology, it accelerates the pace of change, how quickly change hits us. One of the fears that we have as a society is driverless cars, because the belief is that, if a driverless car comes out, and lets ... I'm going to pick 2030. I'm actually probably less optimistic than most people on driverless cars.
Mark Herschberg: But let's pretend in 2030, we say great, we've proven it works. All the laws are in place, we're ready to go. The first one rolls off the factory for public use. Within about five years, maybe 10, we've now replaced the majority of rideshare drivers, of truck drivers, maybe even some bus drivers, and so now over, not multiple generations, not over decades, but over a few years, millions of people get displaced, and that's something that our society can't handle as easily. Now, I've picked rideshare as an example, but we're going to see this, of course, in different areas. We're going to see, we'll take lawyers as an example, I mentioned that before.
Mark Herschberg: If now lawyers, instead of looking at 25 cases, only look at eight, maybe only look at five, if some of the writing that they do can be automated, or some of the checking, we suddenly need less lawyers for what we do. What happens to all these people who spend $100,000 getting a law degree? We have to find ways to take people in society as we do these transitions as their whole industry shifts and the jobs are not coming back. We as society have to invest in retraining them for other skills.
Mark Herschberg: It's not quite as simple as oh, go learn to program, I hear there are programmers, or there's a need for that. It has to align to what their interests are, their geography, where they're based, what skills they can bring over from where they were. I helped do some of this in 2010. New York City's economic development council funded a program because we saw lots of people displaced in the great recession, and we knew their jobs weren't coming back. In fact, one of the other big challenges, when you had someone who had been working at, for example, City Corp, a company of 30,000 people, and now we're getting them a job at a startup of 30 people, there's even a cultural shift.
Mark Herschberg: They're very used to, okay, well, let's have the pre meeting before we have the meeting with legal to get the approval so we can consider doing this six month project. When you're in a company of 30 people, you're like, hey Bob, what about doing this? Bob says, "Yeah, I like it. Let's do it." That was it. That was your six month cycle down to a six second conversation. But that's a cultural shift. It's not about a formal education or training. It's a cultural shift that they might not be used to. To handle all this, to go to your question, who's responsible? Well, first, the individual. We always have to take responsibility for our careers because no one's more committed to them than us.
Jeff Bullas: We do.
Mark Herschberg: Second, I think we do have to get some help from the government, federal, state, at societal level. It's not just about, okay, money for programs, it's about things like, what if we have a standard practice that every 10 years you go back to school for six months? That's your macro training. You'll continue to learn each year, but maybe it's normal to go to school for six months. Do we have some type of loan program to help offset that tuition? That might be something upstate funded? Then of course, our schools themselves have to have different types of educational programs that are more for a lifetime of continual learning, and not you're 22 and done, best of luck. Please remember to give us a donation. It has to be a lifetime engagement.
Jeff Bullas: What do you think is one that you didn't mention, but I'm sure you have some ideas about. What's the role of the corporation in terms of retraining and looking after its staff?
Mark Herschberg: I have my opinion that I don't think is always shared. My opinion is corporations do owe that obligation to their employees, but we have to put this in context. Certainly, there's a trend that people are thinking. Today, people tend to change jobs more often. It's not quite true. It's a little more often. It's not quite the same as not a big leap from what it used to be, but that people are disposable, we see more contract workers, so it's not about investing in them. But in fact, I see it as an opportunity. If you know you're hiring someone, let's just assume they're going to be there three or four years.
Mark Herschberg: That's on the shorter sides. The data I've seen puts it closer to five, but let's even say two to three years. Okay, can that investment in them pay off in that timeframe? So, you're not sending them to some two-year MBA program, but you can give them some training that can have an ROI within that timeframe, but also, this should be seen both by the employer and candidate as part of their compensation. I always emphasize this with my students when people say, oh, I want to get good compensation. I want to get good money. They talk about salary, maybe bonus, maybe stock options, but you have to look at other parts of it, and not just vacation.
Mark Herschberg: It's about what training are you going to get? Whether formal training from the company, sending you to program, or even just informal, or what will I learn from the job? When both sides see this, now companies can say, we're delivering more value to you when you work here. You're getting more out of it that will make them more attractive to candidates. Candidates, especially if it's a program that's working and helping them, will be more engaged with the company, will want to stay with that company longer, and the candidates themselves obviously get the benefit from learning. I think corporations can be smart about this and can use this opportunity. We can think of it as micro learning, short-term training, formal or informal, to help develop the skills, and everyone's going to be better off.d
Jeff Bullas: I think you made some really good points there. The other thing that I've come across recently was just doing corporate training for employees can increase retention as well as increase profitability. We're not talking five or 10%. I've heard numbers like 100% increase in profitability by those who train their staff. Retraining is part of that. Definitely. I think this is a great opportunity for us to segue into your Career Toolkit. You've got three sections here. The Career Toolkit, which you've titled the subtitle, Essential Skills for Success that no One Taught You, and I would totally agree being an ex teacher, is that I was a high school teacher.
Jeff Bullas: The central skills for life was I've quite often just completely missed at school. You learn how to do math, learned to do English, and what's the communication skills like? Pass. That was just not done. You discussed three areas. Number one is create career planning. The section two is leadership and management, and the third section is interpersonal dynamics. Let's have a quick look at section one career and career planning. What are the key things that you should be doing in this space? I certainly have some thoughts, in that career planning is quite often just accidental. Sometimes it's experiential.
Jeff Bullas: Sometimes you have a very clear vision, because as a five-year-old, you were going to play the violin, but that doesn't happen very often. Tell a bit about what you see in this first section of your toolkit, the role of career planning and some of the essential things that need to be thinking about.
Mark Herschberg: In chapter one, I talk about how to actually create a career plan. To your point, there's a handful of people who've known since they were five what they want to do. Most of us were exploring and revising. One of the most important pieces of this, it's not about saying this is my plan and I'm rigid. I'm fixed to it. It's about saying, here's my plan and I'm going to adjust along the way. You can almost think of it like a vacation. You say, okay, I'm going to go over to Europe, I'm going to spend three weeks touring these different cities, and I want to hit these museums, but maybe you find you're really enjoying some cities.
Mark Herschberg: So, you want to extend it a few days, or you didn't really like that art museum, maybe you're done with art museums and you want to do something different for a bit. So, you can and should revise it along the way. I talked about beginning with what are the questions that will help you think about what you want to do, and you think about them, ideally, not just today, but in the future, and using these questions, you can start to think about what jobs might be of interest, and you can map out paths to get there. Of course, when you create these plans, it says, this is where I want to be in five years, by just checking in maybe once a year and getting help from your mentors, from your friends, from HR even, you might adjust that plan along the way.
Mark Herschberg: But the key point is that simply hoping you'll wind up where you want to be is less likely to lead to success than if you have a plan. The plan doesn't guarantee success, but it makes the odds more likely. If you don't like where you're going, throw it out, adjust along the way.
Jeff Bullas: What you're really saying is that setting a hard goal is not the best way to do it, is maybe you're setting a direction or intent of a possibility of something that you might enjoy.
Mark Herschberg: General Eisenhower once said, "Plans are worthless, but planning is everything." Even the act of doing this, of thinking about these questions will help. To go back to what I mentioned earlier, when I had the choice between staying with, as a company split in two, following my CTO or staying with the company, I started saying, how do I evaluate this? I came up with a list of questions. Do I want to have a job? What's helpful? Where am I going? Once I can answer those questions, I could evaluate which job was right for me, and then realize option C, they hadn't even considered before, I should go look for something that's more aligned with this.
Mark Herschberg: The act alone of planning, even if you don't say this is where I want to be, and by the way, the, where I want to be, for some people that's, I want to be chief of medicine. For other people, it's, I think I want to be doing something where I'm leading some type of business development-ish. I don't know the title or the industry. So, it could just be certain skills or practices you want to do. It could be as concrete or as vague as you want, but that discussion you have in your head or with your friends, that's what's going to help you figure out where you want to go.
Jeff Bullas: Yeah. I think you made some great points there. What I've discovered along the way in that context is, and I'd be interested in your feedback on this as well, in terms of your Career Toolkit and your experience as well from life, as we've learned a lot from life, not just academic exposure. When I was teaching, I went and did a bit of part-time selling at night and I discovered I was quite good at it and enjoyed it. In fact, I made more money in two nights a week selling than I did from my entire week of teaching.
Jeff Bullas: There's a message there somewhere. I changed to a new school and moved to a different city. At the end of that year, I knew that I had to leave teaching. I did not feel at home. I didn't feel like I belonged. It was just a place that was a journey, just a stopping point along the way of life. What I did is I ... This is an experiential thing regarding the planning, is that you have an idea or a plan that maybe I'm thinking to myself, the whisper was maybe I should try some styles. I went and tried three sales jobs just without pay, stepped in for a few days into these. One was life insurance selling, one was real estate selling, and the other one was selling technology and it was in the middle of the PC revolution, where Steve Jobs and Bill Gates were duking it out in the mid-1990s.
Jeff Bullas: What did I do? I went, I know which one I feel most comfortable with, and I chose the technology path, and pretty well not left it apart from a few distractions along the way, but what do you think is the role of low risk experiential testing, I suppose, self testing of your plan?
Mark Herschberg: I'm a big fan of it. In a great book, Range, by David Epstein, in one of the chapters, he talks about how people actually do this. Many people will try out lots of different things early on. Not in a conscious planning way, but they'll try things and quickly discard. This, it turns out from a game theory standpoint, is the most efficient way to learn. I recommend to my students when they say, "I'm trying to figure out what internship I should do." I tell them, "Well, look, if you're 90% set on Wall Street, maybe just do one or two jobs in a startup or in big tech or consulting." Try something you think you're not going to like, because if you don't like it, you go, "Yep, tried it, don't like it." You'll learn from not liking it. You'll realize, what is it you don't like about it?
Mark Herschberg: I don't like that it is not structured. I don't like that the office is like someone's spare bedroom, whatever it is you don't like, great, you've learned. Now, it's harder to do that when you're 30 to say, "I want to try something." Early in your career, try things, and try even things you're not certain of, because that makes it easier when you commit, or you can try a thing you commit, but don't do that, say all three summers, if you're a student. Now, as an adult, we don't always have the opportunities for internships. That, by the way, is something I think we need to fix as a society as well.
Mark Herschberg: We need to have some type of internship program. I mentioned the program, the Economic Development Council funded, we actually work with companies to do internships for people in their 30s, 40s, 50s if you get that experience, and see what fits. But even if you can't do that, you can find ways to try things out. You mentioned doing some free work. You might be able to find a friend who has a small business or a startup and say, can I help out? Volunteer work is a great way to do it. I'm a fan of Taproot. Taproot does projects where you and I can both create sandwiches at a food line, but I can do certain things in technology. You can do certain things in social media and technology that are different from each other.
Mark Herschberg: So, they take whatever your particular domain skills are and apply them. You can find projects where you start to get experience doing things that can go on your resume, it does count, but also gets you exposure. Then, to your other point, we learn so much from life, but it doesn't have to be our own life. Certainly go out and talk to other people, ask them, what do you like about your job? What don't you like? If you were entering the field, what do you wish you knew? And listen for things that sound exciting or disappointing and start to look for patterns.
Jeff Bullas: Yeah, I totally agree. Now, you mentioned the company, Taproot?
Mark Herschberg: Taproot would not profit here in the United States. I don't know if they're international, but with Taproot you can sign up. For example, if you wanted to get into, let's say graphic design, Taproot would have a project where they say we have to rebuild a website for this nonprofit. They've come to us. So, they'll get someone who has say HTML skills, someone who has copy skills, someone who can project manage, and they'll need someone to do the design, the look and feel. It's like, great. Here's our team. Each, you do your part, and over a few months, you've built the website for them. Now you can say, "Look, I built this website. I've done some design. Here's proof of it, or here's what I've done, now I love it." Or realize this is not for me and go find something else.
Jeff Bullas: How do you spell Taproot, is it taproot.com?
Mark Herschberg: Dot org.
Jeff Bullas: Dot org.
Mark Herschberg: Yeah, taprootfoundation.org.
Jeff Bullas: I think that's great. That raises another point you mentioned before, internships. Now, in Australia, we can't have internships unless we pay them. In America, I think internships can be free. In other words, you can volunteer. Is that correct?
Mark Herschberg: The law's got some kind of fuzzy over the years. It changes. In my understanding, and this comes with the, I am not a lawyer or an accountant, we used to be able to take them without paying them if they could get some credits, some school credit. But I don't know where the law stands these days. Now, realistically, as an adult, many of us have said, "Oh, Hey, my buddy has a startup. Let me go give him some help. I'll give him a couple of hours a week." I don't think the IRS is going to come down on you unofficially helping out your friend for a number of weeks. It's more when someone's showing up to the office where you don't have that personal relationship.
Jeff Bullas: Yeah. Now, something fascinating that you mentioned before that I'd like to dive into a little bit more, you mentioned doing internships as 30, 40, and 50 year olds. Now, internships are typically thought of as college students, 20 somethings. I think that this area of internships, whatever you want to call it, where 30, 40, 50 year olds, because in the middle of this huge fast change we're in the middle of, and I think the pandemic has certainly accelerated, I think pandemics accelerated the change of society and business by about 10 years.
Jeff Bullas: It might be eight, it might be five, it might be 15, I don't know, but it has accelerated change. We definitely know that. How we work, how business does business, how we live, where we work, the list goes on and on. The role of a 30, 40, 50 sort of internship, where suddenly your 20 is in, the role or the job you did, one, you might hate it. Two, it's starting to disappear in I think the reinvention. So, what do you think about the role of a 30, 40, 50 year old being involved, internships, whatever we want to call it, to help them reinvent their lives to move on to the next chapter of what they love doing?
Jeff Bullas: Taproot's one, obviously who are doing it, which I'm going to do a little bit more research on because it sounds fascinating. What do you think about 30, 40, 50 something internships?
Mark Herschberg: We're using a term internship broadly, because there's lots of ways you can imagine this being done. One of them certainly is you do go back for some program. Certainly we know MBAs, when you do a two year MBA program, you have an internship in that middle year. Or if you're doing law school, you get summer internships. It doesn't matter what your age is. For many people, it's late twenties, early thirties, but no one's looking at your age, or saying, "You're in school, you do an internship. That's natural."
Mark Herschberg: What if our society moved to, you do the six month programs roughly every 10 years or so in your career, and at the end of this six month program, it's normal to do a two month internship? Doesn't even have to be summer-oriented. Just at some point you work with a company and spent two months doing a project with them. It might be just more project-based work, that there's this expectation understanding of, okay, you're going to do almost try before you buy. Here's some 40 year old that's doing a career change. Company's not sure about their background. The person might not even be sure about, is this what they want to do, but they do a two month project.
Mark Herschberg: Now, both sides can feel each other out. I'd say one of the key differences, internships for college and somewhat for high school students, are seen as part of the recruiting pipeline. For many companies, big companies do say, yeah, we know how to get value. For many companies, the mentality is to get a net zero value. You just hope the interns don't suck up more time from your staff than the value they create. You're okay with a net zero value, because what you're doing is building a recruiting pipeline.
Mark Herschberg: If you haven't thought about this, there's a great book, Recruit or Die, by my friend, Chris Resto, that talks about how to think about building a college recruiting pipeline. This is one way to do it, and your interns are there so that you can start to capture people as they come out of college. When you're thinking about interns who do have experience in their 30s or 40s, you might think more about, well, they should be able to deliver some value. It might not be as much as someone who's been doing exactly this for years, but you're not going for that net zero. You're going for net positive to some level to see if it's enough of a fit that they're close enough, you invest a little more time in them, they start the job, and they're going to get to where you need them to be.
Mark Herschberg: But this can also be seen as part of your recruiting pipeline. I know some companies, their recruiting process is in software, pair programming is big. In pair programming, two programmers sit literally side by side and work on the code together. They will say, our interview is you're going to come in for a day and pair program with a couple of different people. By the way, we'll pay you. We're asking you to spend a day doing work, we'll pay you for this. You can take that idea and just expand it out to weeks or months.
Jeff Bullas: Yeah, I think that's some great ideas in that and helping people reinvent their lives. The other part of that equation is, not only just, if you're looking at reinventing yourself or moving on to the next part of your life and career, is it quite often, it happens that, not only do you suddenly discover something you love doing that you never knew about, and you quite often don't discover that unless you do it. Thinking about it's one thing, doing is another. I think if you go and do an internship or do a side hustle is this other term that's used, is that sometimes that turns into a business opportunity, and it certainly did for me.
Jeff Bullas: In that, I went down a certain route, which is in a technology route, then I just started creating some information and content, and that just passion project side hustle, which was a part of reinventing myself at the age of 50 turned into a business opportunity. I think that's the other exciting part of it. It could be a new career path, or it could be a business entrepreneur path. You just don't know how it's going to pan out, but I think tapping into the power and energy that comes from doing what you're meant to be doing is certainly very important.
Mark Herschberg: That's, in some ways, how I wound up here, when I reached out to MIT to say, "Hey, I hear you're doing this class on these topics, I'm passionate about them, how can I help?" That's literally why I said, just how can I help? That led to let me help you do the coursework, to, why don't you come and teach? I've been teaching for 20 years. I didn't set out to write this book. I set out actually to do just a couple of notes for the class, but what I thought was going to be a 20 page pamphlet, turned out to be an entire 300-page book. I include things that aren't taught in the class, and some of the things in class weren't appropriate for the book, but it was certainly ... It influenced the book. Then, even with the book, I wound up building an app to help reinforce the lessons of the book.
Mark Herschberg: One challenge I have is that I read a book and say, "Oh, well, so many great ideas," and then you forget two weeks later. So, I built an app that basically uses space repetition that will pop up each day, just as a little alert on your phone. One of the points from the book. As you read it, you'll help remember it. Now, that's not something I planned on building. I thought this would be useful, I figured. Someone else built it. I'll just go license that and it'll be a nice thing to come with the book.
Mark Herschberg: That doesn't exist. I couldn't find it. I wound up patenting the approach to doing it, building the software, building it in a white label version. Maybe that's going to turn into a side hustle for me, so to speak, because I've had other authors say, "Wow, how do we use this for our book?" Even some corporate learning and development team say, "For a corporate training, we'd love to do that to help reinforce what people get in our classes." I had no plans when I said to MIT, how can I help? That I would write a book or build an app, but one thing does lead to another, to your point.
Jeff Bullas: I think there's real magic when you take an idea, do it, and then share it. I think that's where it certainly the rubber really hits the road, is when you take, does this idea really work in the real world, or is it just a crazy idea that's not going to get any traction. What's the name of the app?
Mark Herschberg: The app is called “The Career Toolkit App”. Those with the book, if you go to the website, you can find it on both the Android and Apple store. If you go to my website, thecareertoolkitbook.com, and you click on the app tab, you can find links to both the app in the Apple and Android store.
Jeff Bullas: I will pass that along to our readers and listeners and viewers, and I'm going to check it out as well. The next two sections, number one, leadership and management and interpersonal dynamics come down to, and this is something that you discovered, is that you interviewed a lot of people for startups in your role, and you discovered that they could answer the hard skill questions, but when it came down to soft skills, which is I'm putting those, and those leadership management and interpersonal dynamics into the soft skills box, tell us a bit about section two, leadership and management, and a couple of important areas there that people need to consider.
Mark Herschberg: When I looked at the section, there's of course, no shortage of books on all of these topics. You have many, many books just on a single one of these topics. What I focused on was really the fundamentals. It's not about this leadership theory or that one, or this management process or that one. What are the fundamental pieces that are true throughout all these different theories and approaches? One of the most important things, especially with maybe some of your younger listeners, a lot of people I found in the workplace say, well, I'm looking forward to being a leader once this happens, once I become a director, once I get the promotion, once I have a managerial title. Their mind is set to positional leadership, that your leadership comes from your role.
Mark Herschberg: One of the most important things that you can recognize is leadership can be influential. It doesn't matter where you're seated at the table. Influence is about putting forth an idea and getting people to follow it, and that is the essence of leadership. That's what I talk about in the book, is how you can use this type of leadership, no matter where you are in the organization, or in your career. Likewise, in the management chapters, I break that down into people management and some process management, some tools, something that we miss, and even a lot of process books we miss. Simple things like recognizing different people have different motivations.
Mark Herschberg: Some people are motivated. You tell them, look, you do this, you get a big bonus. They say, "Great, let me add it." Other people think of ah, Oh, but this is a challenging job. Even some people are motivated by the comradery of going to their office, of being part of something, of the mission. Recognize that you can't use the same carrot for everyone when you're motivating them. Again, you can read entire books on the different ways to do this, but even simply having this understanding, and this is one of the themes throughout the book, is that a lot of these things, once you recognize that something is a little more complicated, isn't just a simple box, isn't a binary, I'm leading or I'm not, you suddenly see opportunities.
Mark Herschberg: Once you recognize, well, not everyone is motivated the same way, what happens next? All of a sudden, you start to see, oh, as we have this discussion, I realize Jane's really motivated by the mission and Steve is really motivated by money. You might've missed that before, but now you're open to seeing it, and you can continue the development on your own because you recognize the lessons and opportunities all around you.
Jeff Bullas: I think that's great. I think what you've mentioned there is, I would encapsulate it as being aware. We all quite often just stumble through life seeing but not looking, or looking but not seeing. That's one thing that I've certainly tried to work on over the years is building personal awareness. I think this comes down to the third section you've talked about, interpersonal dynamics, which I think you go a lot stronger into communication. Tell us a bit about what you think is important in this section, interpersonal dynamics.
Mark Herschberg: This is broken down to four chapters, communication, networking, negotiation, and ethics. These are just fundamental skills that underpin everything you do, whether you're an entrepreneur or an individual contributor, no matter where you are, even outside of the workplace, these are key skills. Again, you start to recognize, when you learn negotiations, most people think, well, negotiations, it's where I'm sitting across the table from you and where negotiating my salary or a vendor contract. That is a negotiation, but it's also when you're sitting around the conference room table and you're working out, who's working on what pieces of this, or which departments are going to be responsible for what?
Mark Herschberg: That's a negotiation. Your boss is asking you to stay late and you want to have a little more flexibility, that's a negotiation. Once you start to recognize this, you see more opportunities to negotiate or different ways to communicate or different ways to build your network, and you can continue to enhance your abilities that are going to help you inside the office and out.
Jeff Bullas: I think you made some fantastic points there in terms of sort of being aware by listing skills, communication skills, I went and did a course for months. It was done once a week. It was part of a counseling course actually. The essence of it was to create ... If you're going to be a good communicator, number one, you've got to start with self-awareness, how you come across. Then from that, if you are more aware of yourself and how you communicate, do you annoy people? Do you not listen enough? All of the above, and leads on to then being more aware of others. If you're self-aware, then you can take the next step and be much more aware of others because you can stand back and go, "Oh, I didn't know I was like that."
Jeff Bullas: Then you'd tend to be a little bit more aware of others as well, I think, in terms of, well, they might have added about a different thing to me. They come from a different culture. Something's much more important to them than others. What I'm thinking is not right or wrong. Just, we have different views.
Mark Herschberg: That's why I touched on the communication chapter. Here again, you can read a hundred different books that look at a hundred different ways, but one of the fundamentals of communication is exactly what you're saying. We all come with certain perspectives. Once you begin to recognize we have different perspectives and how to identify that perspective, you suddenly begin to learn how I can communicate to put it into a perspective that resonates with you, or to communicate the idea in a way that fits into the framework of your perspective.
Mark Herschberg: Now, one of the things that's true of all of these, you talk about this class where it's listening with other people, these skills are all very different than hard skills in terms of how we learn them. When I wanted to learn physics, it was pretty easy. The professor sat there and wrote a whole bunch of equations on the board and we memorized them and tried to learn. Occasionally, we'd ask each other clarifying questions, but for something like leadership, there's no simple equation. There's no, this is it. Learn this, now you know how to be a leader. Here's the three-step process for networking. It's a mindset and there's more than one answer, there's more than one perspective, as you brought up.
Mark Herschberg: These skills are best learned in peer groups. Now, we see this in business school, when they have classes on leadership, they do so not by pure lecture. They have discussion groups, and they bring in someone who has a military background, and someone who is a teacher, and someone who is an engineer, where your business school classes are diverse groups, so you get these different perspectives. As you work on learning these skills, a good way to do it is to build a peer group. You can do this with your friends. You can have your company organize it as well. As you tackle each of these topics, talk with other people, how do they approach it? How do they see this leadership challenge? How would they communicate this issue? Which is different than yours, but you're all gonna learn from each other.
Mark Herschberg: Even getting to the earlier pieces, like creating your career plan or section two about how to do things like manage your manager or deal with corporate politics, that diversity of perspectives are going to help you formulate a much better approach as you tackle each of the questions.
Jeff Bullas: Yeah. Soft skills certainly are not valued enough, especially when we're younger. We want to learn one and one equals two, and the hard skills are taught, and they're taught mostly at school. Life, quite often, teaches us the soft skills, whether we like it or not. Tell us, just to wind up here, let's touch on before we finish networking. What a lot of business people realize, sometimes slower than others, fast than others is networking. Tell us a bit about what you think is really important in networking
Mark Herschberg: Here, again, I think of mindset is key. I was very lucky that I had read some books early on that changed how I thought about networking, because most of us think about networking as, oh, I need a job. Okay, time to go my network and I'll find a job. Then, as soon as you have one, done with that, but in fact, networking is a mentality, is about creating and utilizing this network continuously. I had read a book by someone, and he talked about, anytime he had a problem, his network was his answer. He knew there's someone in his network who can help him.
Mark Herschberg: When you have this mentality, you start to say, oh, I have this great network, yes, we need to find a job, or a supplier, or learn more about this industry, or figure out what I want to do in my vacation to this country. Someone somewhere in my network has the knowledge I need. You start to use your network as a daily tool. But of course, networking is not just about taking from your network, it's about giving, and you learn to also feed your network, to give back to your network on daily basis. When you do this, it becomes second nature. It becomes now just a natural process and something that's always available.
Mark Herschberg: It's almost, I think of it like our cell phones. It used to be, we'd say, okay, I had a computer and well, if I need something online, I'd go into the computer room, I put up my computer, I log on to the internet and it was a lot of effort. But now we have the internet and our computer's in our pocket, and for us to just say, oh yeah, let me just pull up the information on my cell phone. It's a natural extension of who we are because we've lowered the level of engagement from when we had to boot a computer and log in. If you treat your network like that old version, it's okay, I have to go warm up my network. I have to go use it. It's not going to be as readily available.
Mark Herschberg: But when you get this mindset and have it as part of your daily activities, it's like carrying in your pocket, it's always available at a moment's notice.
Jeff Bullas: Yeah. I totally agree with you. I remember going to some of the old breakfast networking events and just where you meet each other over breakfast, you'll turn up in suits and ties. You hand out cards to each other. Typically, the biggest problem with a lot of those is, it's all about taking, not giving. I think the biggest challenge we all have, as humans realize is that, you just got to keep giving and giving, and guess what? The opportunities will show up out of that. For me, you meet a lot of people that have an agenda, and that agenda is to take something from you or to get something. I think the mindset on that is very, very important.
Jeff Bullas: Is that, just give. Guess what? When you need them 10 years later, you'll be surprised by what will show up and what gift you will be given then after you've been giving for maybe a decade. Now, this is not about being used, that's for sure. But one of the main reasons I started this podcast was, and this is what tipped me over the edge after hiding the technology equipment in a cupboard for about three years was, one of the biggest gifts of podcasting is that it's about building relationships. For me, I feel honored and grateful to be able to share your gift and skills and experience with the world.
Jeff Bullas: For me, the podcast, the biggest gift it gives me is about giving attention to others and sharing their stories because that's where I think the magic really happens.
Mark Herschberg: 100% right. I think of networking as karmic. You just keep giving, and it will eventually find its way back to you.
Jeff Bullas: Yep. I just started creating free content 11 years ago. People said to me, "You're mad to giving all this away, giving away your Intellectual property " I'm going, "Yeah, but it feels right." And guess what? The world showed up. That's what happened.
Mark Herschberg: Yes, absolutely.
Jeff Bullas: Mark, are there any sort of key takeaways you'd like to leave with our audience before we finish up here?
Mark Herschberg: First a few things, if you'd like to learn more about the book or get in touch with me, if you go to thecareertoolkit book.com, you can find out about the book and where to buy it, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, all the usual places, but you can also download lots of free resources, including the app. So, you can try this out and learn a little more about it. I would encourage you, if you're going to pursue these skills, to do so with other people, because learning and gaining that diversity of perspective is going to make it much more powerful and help folks. Of course, if you have questions, you're more than welcome to reach out to me. You can do so through the website.
Jeff Bullas: Thanks, Mark, for that information. What we'll do is, in the ... When we put it up on the website, the transcript and the intro, we'll have all the links for people there as well. Thank you very much, Mark, for your time. It's been an absolute pleasure, and to hear your stories, and hear your experiences and what you've learned along the way. I look forward to catching up in real life someday when things settle down and we can fly around the world again, I'm looking forward to that. Thank you very much. It's been an absolute honor to have you on the show.
Mark Herschberg: Thank you for having me. It's been a pleasure.
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