My name is Jessica Hartung.
In 1998 I founded Integrated Work. The company has grown from a one-person, part-time operation I ran with a baby on my hip, to national presence in building the leaders our society needs. Through collaborative contracts with the government, state and regional associations, businesses, and foundations, we unlock the possibilities for meaningful, systemic change. This company is also learning laboratory where we bring our authentic selves to work, grow together personally and professionally, and learn the most effective methods of organizational life for ourselves and our clients.
I turned my quest for a great workplace into a business.
This company was born out the pain of my prior work experiences. There were some awful workplace cultures with bullies in charge. The only thing that made them tolerable was learning and growing myself along the way. At first, it was to spite the incompentent or negligent people I had worked for. “I’ll show them!” I thought.
But over time, the learning, development and growth began to take me new places. Growing a business is also about growing oneself, and all those we impact. So I deliberately built the company around my value of learning and being fully human.
It is possible to create an enjoyable work environment and make a real difference in the world. Lots of people told us we were doing it wrong, but we did it anyway.
I began to study more about how people learn, and where they learn. Turns out, the workplace is more ideal for learning than the classroom. The case study method pioneered by Harvard Business School allows students to read about a particular situation, study it, and figure out how they would respond. At work, you don’t just read it, you live it. And you find out what happens next!
We Need Ethical, Self Aware Leaders Running Our World
Putting bullies in charge never works out well for anyone but the bully. Yet we keep putting them in charge. Why aren’t there more conscious leaders in charge?
Because we have to build them. Being a great leader is many things, but easy isn’t one of them. It takes time, practice, lots of support, mentoring, breakthroughs, changes, community and more. Leadership development programs are reserved for top echelon executives, but it is the idealists, the change makers, social entrepreneurs, school shooting survivors—the people who have the passion and clarity of purpose to improve our world, we need to invest in. The future principled leaders we need can be grown.
Mission-driven, purposeful, passionate people who are changing the world in ways positive ways are my clients, friends, neighbors, collaborators and my reason for quitting my day job to get the message out, and change the way we think about work.
Redefine Work As The Place You Learn.
After studying for 10 years various tactics for improvement in the workplace, I became aware that when the mindset (how people think about work) is intentional, HUGE leaps in growth happen. If we deliberately choose how we think, we can transform our experience at work. The positive ripples of doing work that matters spread outward into our home life, our desire to contribute to the local community in which we live, and other tribes of people who are making their lives fulfilling—including their professional lives. Seeing work as a lifelong development experience keeps us fresh, engaged and building better communication habits, relationship building skills, and self-knowledge that improves our whole lives, and the lives of our loved ones. Sharing these insights in a book was a logical next step.
Writing The Conscious Professional: Transform Your Life at Work transformed me. Instead of a business owner, facilitator, coach and consultant, my focus shifted to research, writing and educating so that more and more of the mission-driven leaders can move from being un-mentored, stuck, and dealing with co-workers who were raised by wolves to using their work (including its craziness) as a case study to live their purpose. The challenges at work are your leadership development workout. You can transform your experience at work by transforming your thinking about it, which changes how you interact, the possibilities you see, and the results you create!
If I Got It, You Got It.
It’s not hard to get information out of me. All you have to do is ask. I love to ideate and design ways to transform worklives, individually and collectively. Engaged, learning and focused on what really matters, people can make so much more of a difference, staring right where they are.
I am on a mission to transform a million worklives to meaningful work experiences by 2020.
Wanna help? Here’s what you can do:
- Connect on LinkedIn: Join the Community — Share and Learn with Conscious Professionals
- Share my weekly professional development tips with others who would benefit
- Start a bookclub conversation on The Conscious Professional
- Invite me to a podcast!
- Share a professional growth story from your experience
- Grow your own leadership. Transforming angst and anger at work into learning and growth that positively impacts our whole life is alchemy that we all can create with a little practice.
Thank you for being on the journey with me!