top of page

Tips from the Expert: A Conversation with Her Expat Life's New Career Coach Jessica Mckasson


Meet Jessica, the newest addition to the dynamic team at Her Expat Life! With a career journey spanning both corporate landscapes and entrepreneurial endeavors, Jessica brings a wealth of experience and a passion for empowering women to unlock their full potential. Her transition from Fortune 500 roles to launching her own coaching business reflects her deep commitment to personalized guidance and fostering growth on a global scale. As a digital nomad herself, Jessica's journey from bustling cityscapes to vibrant destinations like Turkey, Costa Rica, Greece, and now Spain, offers a unique perspective on blending work and travel seamlessly. Her advocacy for female empowerment extends beyond career coaching, delving into areas such as understanding menstrual cycles to optimize performance and embracing holistic approaches to career development. With a focus on inclusivity and support, Jessica's vision aligns perfectly with Her Expat Life's mission, promising to create spaces where women can thrive, connect, and embark on transformative journeys. We sat down with Jessica to unpack her wonderful journey and to give us an insight on how to females can make their career dreams and remote passions a reality. 1. Jessica, welcome to the team at Her Expat Life! We are excited to have you join us as a  career coach. Tell us about your career journey. 

I am so excited to be joining the Her Expat Life team! My career journey has been a blend of  corporate experience and entrepreneurship. Starting out in a Fortune 500 company, I held roles  focused on leadership, career development, and professional mentorship. It was there that I  discovered my passion for coaching individuals, both personally and professionally. As fulfilling as this was, I felt a pull towards a more personalized form of coaching that would allow me to help individuals expand in greater ways. This led me to pursue accreditation in coaching, a  decision that marked a significant turning point in my career. With a renewed sense of purpose and excitement, I took a leap of faith and launched my own coaching business, and I’ve been coaching women around the globe to reach their full potentials ever since!  

2. You are also a digital nomad, having lived in Turkey, Costa Rica, Greece and now making your way to Spain. How did you decide to become a digital nomad and what have been your biggest lessons over the last two years? 

Interestingly enough, COVID19 was one of the biggest factors that made me want to become a full time digital nomad. I had always loved traveling and took every opportunity I could get to explore the world. When COVID hit and my work went fully remote, it made me realize that I could do my job from anywhere and that I didn’t need to be tied down to one place. At the time, I was living in downtown Seattle and instead of staying in my condo during COVID, I  decided to go on road trip around the western US to explore the different national parks. I ended up airbnb’ing it for almost 3 months. This was my first taste of what it could be like to combine work and travel together. I immediately fell in love with the nomadic life and decided to sell everything I owned and moved to Central America. And I’ve been embracing the nomad life ever since! As far as biggest lessons, I would say that if you want to be a nomad, you really just have to learn to go with the flow and be ready to adjust easily. You never know what random things are going to be thrown at you along the way, especially in a new country, and you just have to learn to roll with the punches and not get discouraged. When I first moved to Guatemala, there was a time when I wanted to give up and run back home, because it was really hard at first. But thankfully, I stuck it out, I rolled with the punches, and learned not to let some setbacks get in the way of my bigger goals.  

3. Another big passion of yours is female empowerment - in particular females understanding their menstrual cycles to maximise their careers and lives in general.  Can you tell us more about this work and the biggest misconceptions that women have  about their own bodies?  

I would say the biggest misconception that women have about their bodies is that they are meant to operate the same way that men do and expect themselves to have the same energy levels all the time. There is a huge biological difference between men and women. Men have a 24 hormonal clock that resets every 24 hours, so as a result, their hormonal patterns remain relatively stable on a daily basis. Meaning they essentially have the same energy levels day in and day out. However, women's hormonal clocks follow a unique rhythm that spans approximately 28-30 ish days (aka the menstrual cycle). During this time period, women experience pretty drastic hormonal shifts that impact everything from energy levels, mood,  cognitive abilities, and even interpersonal interactions. I speak to women all the time who are frustrated because of things like their energy levels feeling inconsistent; one day they feel like superwoman and the next day they feel exhausted. This is a direct result of a hormonal shift happening within the menstrual cycle. The issue that many women face is this pressure to  “perform”, have the same energy levels all the time, and to “keep up” with the rigors of the male hormonal clock. But as women, when we try and do this, we are actually living in  opposition to our natural biology. By understanding their menstrual cycles and tuning into their body's natural rhythms, women can harness the power of their hormones to optimize their performance and well-being in every area of life.  

4. With regards to the world of remote work and females breaking into this space, what is your advice to women looking to have a global lifestyle and what are the first steps in making this happen? 

My first piece of advice is this; if you have an inkling or a desire to have a global lifestyle, follow your inkling! Feeling a bit scared or uncomfortable is totally normal and to be expected. It takes courage to live a nomadic life but it truly is so magical and so worth it. As far as first steps, I would suggest starting out by clarifying your goals and motivations for pursuing the digital nomad lifestyle. Are you seeking adventure, flexibility, career advancement, or a combination of these? Understanding your objectives will help guide the decision-making process. Then I would say to explore potential destinations for your digital nomad journey, considering factors such as cost of living, visa requirements, internet connectivity, safety, and quality of life. Start with countries or cities known for their digital nomad-friendly infrastructure, coworking spaces, and vibrant expat communities. Getting tapped into online communities, social networks, and digital nomad forums to connect with other like-minded individuals is also incredibly helpful! I would absolutely encourage seeking advice, tips, and insights from experienced digital nomads who can offer guidance and support as you embark on your journey. Lastly, I would advise you to consider taking a trial run or short-term trip to test the digital nomad lifestyle before committing to a long-term adventure. Use this opportunity to assess your comfort level with remote work, travel logistics, and living in different environments.  

5. How do you help women identify and leverage their unique strengths in their careers? 

I actually love bringing in a holistic approach to helping women identify and leverage their unique strengths in their careers. One powerful tool I often incorporate is Human Design, a system that provides insights into an individual's inherent gifts, strengths, and life purpose.  

Understanding your Human Design can be incredibly illuminating and empowering. By uncovering your unique design, including your type, strategy, authority, and profile, you gain valuable insights into your natural tendencies, communication style, decision-making process, and areas of potential growth. I've seen many women struggle in their careers because they're operating against their Human Design, pushing themselves to conform to societal expectations or pursuing paths that don't align with their authentic selves. By gaining clarity on their Human Design, women can embrace their innate strengths, talents, and inclinations, allowing them to make more aligned career choices and thrive in their professional endeavors. In addition to Human Design, I also utilize other tools and approaches, such as strengths assessments,  personality tests, and coaching techniques, to help women uncover their unique gifts and leverage them effectively in their careers. My goal is to empower women to embrace their  

authenticity, honor their natural abilities, and create fulfilling and successful careers that align with who they truly are. 

6. How can women effectively navigate career transitions or pivots? 

Before embarking on a career transition, I firmly believe that taking time for introspection is key for any woman. It's about getting clear on goals and aspirations to pivot into a new career path that truly aligns with her. I always encourage women to pause and reflect on what truly lights them up, what they excel at, and what resonates with their values. This introspection serves as a compass, guiding them towards opportunities that feel right. In my own journey, I found that pausing and reflecting played a crucial role in my ability to pivot seamlessly in my career. By taking a step back and identifying what wasn't fulfilling in my current role, what aspects brought me joy, and where my strengths lay, I was able to navigate towards a path that felt more aligned vs just ending up in another job that wasn’t right for me.  

7. What are some key skills and competencies that women should develop to thrive in the modern workforce? 

Here are a few of my top competencies that I believe the modern day women should focus on:  

  1. Adaptability: The ability to navigate change, embrace uncertainty, and pivot when necessary is crucial in today's rapidly evolving workplace. 

  2. Communication: Strong communication skills, including verbal, written, and interpersonal communication, are essential for effectively conveying ideas, collaborating  with colleagues, and building relationships. 

  3. Tech savviness: Proficiency in technology and digital tools is increasingly important in virtually every industry. Women who are adept at using technology can enhance their productivity, creativity, and competitiveness in the workforce. 

  4. Continuous learning: Embracing a growth mindset and committing to lifelong learning allows women to stay relevant, adapt to new technologies and trends, and advance  their careers in a rapidly changing world. 

8. How can organizations create more inclusive and supportive environments for female employees?

There is so much opportunity in the workforce to create more supportive environments for women, I could truly talk about this topic all day! But I’ll focus on two key areas that I believe organizations must address in order to create more inclusive and supportive environments for female employees. First, addressing the gender pay gap, and second, the underrepresentation of women in leadership. Women are still only getting paid about 80 cents for every dollar a man makes. Additionally, only about 20-30% of people in leadership positions are women. If companies truly want women to feel included and supported, they need to ensure that women are paid equally to men and that women have equal opportunities to move into leadership positions.  

9. What strategies can women use to negotiate salary and promotions effectively? 

First and foremost, do your research and know your worth. Before entering negotiations,  research industry standards, salary benchmarks, and promotion criteria to understand your market value and leverage relevant data to support your requests. Next, be prepared to highlight your achievements and your value adds. Clearly articulate your accomplishments,  skills, and contributions to the organization. Quantify your achievements whenever possible and demonstrate how you've added value to the company. When it comes to the actual numbers, start high and be flexible. Aim to anchor the negotiation by starting with a higher salary or promotion request than your desired outcome. Be prepared to negotiate and  compromise, but also know your bottom line. When it comes to negotiation, frame your negotiation in terms of future potential and the value you will bring to the organization.  Emphasize how a salary increase or promotion will enable you to continue making significant contributions. Lastly, timing is key. Choose the right timing for negotiations, such as after a successful project completion, performance review, or when the company is in a strong financial position. Avoid negotiating during times of uncertainty or budget constraints. 

10. What are the biggest trends for 2024 in terms of career growth and development, in particular for females? 

I would say that some of the biggest trends in 2024 continue to be around remote work,  employee wellbeing, diversity and inclusion, and the globalization of work. The shift towards remote and flexible work arrangements continues to accelerate, providing women with greater opportunities to balance work and personal responsibilities. This trend enables more diverse talent participation and fosters inclusivity in the workforce. Organizations are also prioritizing employee well-being by offering holistic wellness programs, mental health support, and flexible scheduling options. There continues to be increased focus on diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives within organizations, driven by societal movements and a growing recognition of the benefits of diverse teams. Lastly, the increasing globalization of work has opened up remote job opportunities with global companies, allowing women to work from anywhere and collaborate with diverse teams worldwide. Companies are recognizing that this trend promotes geographic flexibility and gives them access to a much larger global talent pool. 

11. Lastly, what do you believe will be your biggest contribution to Her Expat Life´s team and community?

I believe my biggest contribution will stem from my unwavering passion for helping women truly live their best lives, both personally and professionally. When it comes down to it, my life’s mission is all about empowering women to reach their full potential and find fulfillment in every aspect of their lives. As someone who's walked the path of career change and the digital nomad life, I understand the challenges women face in the workplace and beyond when choosing a more untraditional lifestyle. I am so excited to join the Her Expat team and continue to create more spaces where women can thrive, connect, and support each other along the way in their journeys. 



Ready to make your mark on the international stage? Email info@herexpatlife.com to explore our services and claim your exclusive discount. Don't miss out on the chance to redefine your career journey with Jessica and Her Expat Life... Here's to the empowered women who dream big and conquer even bigger. Cheers to your global success! 🌟✈️"


10 views0 comments

Comments


bottom of page