• Sarah E. Brown

Want to Get to C-Suite? You Need a Long-Term Plan with Suzanna Keith


Are you confident about your career game plan? Do you want to know how you can up your game plan so it can guarantee you your spot in the C-Suite? Do you want to learn the promising and proven ways you can advance your career?


Be YOU-nique with your own business mantra, and have a mentor, sponsor, and champion. All these will help you guarantee a spot in the C- Suite and become a respected woman leader!


Suzanna Keith is the Founder and CEO of Hello Career Guru. She brings extensive experience as a Senior Marketing, Sales, and Innovation Executive with a proven history of driving revenue. She provides strong leadership skills and deep brand-building experience from Fortune 500 companies, Y Combinator startups, and not for profits.


In this episode, Suzanna shares her insights on how you can advance in your career and get that spot in the C-Suite. She also talks about what makes a leader influential, powerful, and most especially, respectable.


What you will learn from this episode:

  • Discover how you can develop your game plan which can guarantee you C-Suite success

  • Learn more about other steps to help you advance your career

  • Find out why you need to have your own business mantra


Women need to find a way to really make sure that they're seen, they're heard, and then everybody understands what they're doing, and how they're really adding value to the organization. And I believe that you can do that by having a business mantra that you can suddenly let everybody know that you're doing.
- Suzanna Keith


Valuable Free Resource:


Check out the Hello Career Guru featured podcast episodes

  • Job Search Sites for Women by Women Featuring Rita Capek

  • Unapologetically Ambitious Featuring Shellye Archambeau

Get a two-month free offer of Hello Career Guru: EVENTFEB21



Topics Covered:


02:33 -Challenge is the lack of tools and resources to help women get to the C-Suite, and women not having enough time to create a path to get there


04:17 - Not having a long-term game plan for their career and goals and not having access to career trainers: the common symptoms women business leaders make when wanting to get to the C-Suite level


05:19 - One free and actionable tip you can do to help you advance your career: Make sure you have a mentor, a sponsor, and a champion


06:55 - Valuable resource to help you set your game plan:


Check out the Hello Career Guru featured podcast episodes

  • Job Search Sites for Women by Women Featuring Rita Capek

  • Unapologetically Ambitious Featuring Shellye Archambeau

Get a two-month free offer of Hello Career Guru: EVENTFEB21


08:23 - Q: What is an effective way you can set yourself apart as a respected leader? A: You can do that by having a business mantra that you can suddenly let everybody know that you're doing


Key Takeaways:


“It would take a woman 12 extra hours to research her needed career goals and action.” - Suzanna Keith


“Real critical thing that you need to do to advance your career is, number one, make sure you have a mentor.” - Suzanna Keith


"Listen carefully, analyze thoroughly, and act decisively." - Suzanna Keith


Ways to Connect with Suzanna Keith:


Ways to Connect with Sarah E. Brown



Full Episode Transcript:


Sarah E. Brown 1:01

My guest today is Suzanna Keith. She is the Founder and CEO of Hello Career Guru. She brings extensive experience as a Senior Marketing, Sales, and Innovation Executive with a proven history of driving revenue. She provides strong leadership skills and deep brand-building experience from Fortune 500 companies.


She's also been involved in startups and not for profits. Suzanna is a visionary in identifying and leveraging cutting-edge insights and innovations to launch new brands. Her expertise includes successfully leading multifunctional project teams for brand innovation, content creation and advertising, promotion, and event marketing, and financial management.


She's had a career in brand marketing at Bayer, Revlon, and Combe Inc., where she served in Senior Marketing and Sales roles. She holds a B.A. in Political Science from Bryn Mawr College and an M.B.A. from Leonard Stern School of Business at New York University. Welcome, Suzanna! Thank you for being here.


Suzanna Keith 2:18

Thank you, Sarah. I'm so honored to be here with you today.


Sarah E. Brown 2:22

So could you start off by telling us what the biggest challenge is you help female leaders face in business today, and maybe some of the symptoms of that challenge?


Suzanna Keith 2:31

Sure, Sarah. Such a good question! I think a big problem for our society that we see is the lack of women in the C-Suite, number one. And then on top of that lack is there are not any tools to help women get there. And then thirdly, women do not have the time to create a path to get there. So we really have a big problem with how can we get more women in senior leadership and arm them with the way to get there. And you know, to that end, women are 47% of the workforce now, but only 5% of the C-Suite, and we at Hello Career Guru want to change that. Research shows that companies with women in their C-Suite are in fact 21 more percent more profitable. We embrace that at Hello Career Guru. Women want tangible career guidance that we can deliver. So Hello Career Guru is the first-ever artificial intelligence platform powered by virtual career C-Suite insights. It offers a woman a one-unifying platform for developing her personalized game plan with recommended actions and resources. Our team developed the platform with the guidance of HR and talent experts to ensure relevance and impact in managing your career. Women will be given a game plan to get to the C-Suite, the tools to get there, and portable time-efficient resources and insight.


Sarah E. Brown 4:06

Very cool. An AI-powered platform to get to the C-Suite. How cool is that? So what do you see are the biggest mistakes that the women have been making before they start working with Hello Career Guru?


Suzanna Keith 4:18

As we have found in our market research, Sarah, women often don't make a long-term game plan of where they want to go with their career. They often go from job to job. They're overwhelmed with family and work and often really are going from task to task. So our analysis shows that it would take a woman 12 extra hours to research her needed career goals and action. So based upon this, we conducted a Gallup-type study with a group called "No Instant Insights", and found that women needed to find a way to get time back and a way to get ahead. And in that study, we found out that 88% of women want a career trainer, 72% would pay for it and, 68% would use it more than once a week. So this tells us that

women need a career trainer to address that big mistake of not making a long-term career goal plan.


Sarah E. Brown 5:11

Wow, long-term plan. So what is the number one free and actionable tip you can give them to address this challenge now?


Suzanna Keith 5:18

I think a real critical thing that you need to do to advance your career is, number one, make sure you have a mentor. Now mentor is someone that you can sit down with, you know, once a month for half an hour and tell them about what your action plan is to get ahead. They can help you find out what resources you need to pursue and how you need to network and connect with other executives and it's good to have a mentor within your company and then outside your company. To the end, within your company, you definitely want to have someone that is a sponsor. A sponsor is a person that can be in any of the different areas or disciplines within your company, but they're going to get behind you and help you get promoted. In fact, they're often a person, or you want to make sure they're a person that's part of the promotion process. And that way, you can sit down with them and discuss your annual reviews, feedback you received, areas for improvement and really get that person to help sponsor you. And then thirdly, is potentially a champion. And that is someone who will go above and beyond the sponsor to really help give you ideas and opportunities to get ahead. And that champion can often be your own boss or be a very senior C-Suite executive. I would recommend a woman to look at these three ways to get, you know, help with advancing her career-- a mentor, a sponsor, and a champion.


Sarah E. Brown 6:53

Mentor, sponsor, and champion. So what is a valuable free resource you can share with the women who are listening today to help them understand this challenge better?


Suzanna Keith 6:58 First of all, I would love to encourage them to check out our Hello Career Guru podcast, especially the one on Job Search Sites for Women by Women by one of our Hello Career Guru advisors, Rita Capek. We also have another excellent podcast by Shellye Archambeau, the Author of Unapologetically Ambitious. And she has also been a C-Suite Executive, the top African-American C-Suite Executive in Silicon Valley, and is on the Board of Nordstroms and a number of tech companies. So really look to her podcast to gain some of those tidbits on how to get a mentor, sponsor, champion and how to get ahead to reach the C-Suite. In addition, we would love to offer all the listeners a two-month free offer to try out Hello Career Guru, which is valued at $39.99 for six months. So if they could use the code, EVENTFEB21. And that's like the word "event", the beginning of February 21, so EVENTFEB21. When they get to the payment screen, they will get two months off of Hello Career Guru.


Sarah E. Brown 8:12

Oh, what a generous offer! Terrific. So Suzanna, what is one question that I should have asked you that will help our audience understand this problem better and take action to address it? And then would you please answer the question?


Suzanna Keith 8:24

I would recommend, what is an effective way you can set yourself apart as a respected leader? Because that is something that's really critical right now, especially in the Zoom environment. Women need to find a way to really make sure that they're seen, they're heard, and then everybody understands what they're doing, and how they're really adding value to the organization. And I believe that you can do that by having a business mantra that you can suddenly let everybody know that you're doing. And mine, personally, is, "Listen carefully, analyze thoroughly, and act decisively." And women can communicate this when they're in team meetings, and directly with their boss about what their business mantra is how potentially- maybe they want to analyze more and learn to listen better because listening and empathy are serious skills that we have had identified by our C-Suite data set. So I think that would be an excellent question for women to ponder is, what's an effective way you can set yourself apart as a respected leader?


Sarah E. Brown 9:33

Terrific. Suzanna, thank you so much for being here today.


Suzanna Keith 9:38

Thank you, Sarah. I've really enjoyed our conversation.




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