I think knowing that dreams of any type of balance is a loosing battle and giving up the idea of being able to do it all is liberating. Do as much as you can so that you feel like you have done your best and are satisfied.
As co-founder of The Second Shift, Jenny Galluzzo lives her life committed to the empowerment of women through work. She is fiercely dedicated to shifting the path forward for women, encouraging them to forge their own career paths with confidence, intention, and optimism. Jenny is responsible for the member community and all things brand, overseeing messaging, communications, and content channels. She curates events across the country to bring members and business partners together, and with her team is in close contact with members during the multi-step application process. Beyond connecting women with jobs, Jenny is also in regular contact with members, advising about career transitions, gender equity in the workforce, and becoming an agent for change.
Prior to starting The Second Shift, Jenny spent many years in journalism, researching, writing, hosting and producing for Good Morning America, News 12 and Plum TV. Jenny holds a BA from Duke University and an MS from the Columbia University School of Journalism. She lives in New York City with her husband and two young sons.
Thank you so much for doing this with us! What is your “backstory”?
I was a television journalist looking for a way to transition out of one career path but continue to use my skills and experience. I thought I was un-hireable and realized that there were a lot of women in my age group in a similar position — so I did what entrepreneurs do; I started a business to address the problem. That business is The Second Shift and we provide jobs for professional women looking for flexibility and career change and give companies a way to attract and retain critical female talent.
Can you share the funniest or most interesting story that happened to you since you began leading your company?
We are a tech-enabled company and I had to catch up quick. When we first started, someone asked me to send them an invite to the meeting we had just planned. I was so confused and started drafting “Dear X, I look forward to seeing you on…” when my co-founder showed me how to send a calendar invite!
What was your biggest challenge to date either personally or professionally and how did you overcome it?
Learning that being in a start-up means crazy highs and lows, and you can be distraught over losing a critical hire or a missed deadline or not getting funding one day and then soaring the next. I don’t sweat the negatives anymore because I know that they won’t be important very quickly. I also learned to celebrate the victories and the highs because they also don’t last long.
What does leadership mean to you and how do you best inspire others to lead?
We are an all women founded and run business, and our business is women’s empowerment through work. Our philosophy is “be a grown up.” We expect you do show up do your work, focus, don’t complain and deliver on time what you said you would. I don’t care if you come in late because you have a sick child or ballet recital or blow out — I care that you did what you said you would do and you killed it.
Was it difficult to fit your life into your business/career and how did you do that?
Priorities shift every day and every week — so maintaining some equilibrium is a like trying to solve a moving jigsaw puzzle. I make it a priority to fit in things that are important to me like working out, going to do something cultural, and attending library reading hours with my son’s kindergarten class. I am not doing all of this every week but rotating priorities keeps the balance just right.
Did you find that as your success grew it became more difficult to focus on the other areas of your life?
As this company grows it takes up more and more of my limited time with friends and family — it is a bargain I knew and willingly made. Saying no to things without guilt was something I had to learn, but I love what I do, I love going to work, and it doesn’t feel like a “give-up” to say no anymore.
Can you share some advice to other leaders about how to achieve the best balance between work and personal life?
I think knowing that dreams of any type of balance is a loosing battle and giving up the idea of being able to do it all is liberating. Do as much as you can so that you feel like you have done your best and are satisfied. If you messed up the balance this week you can try again next week!
What gives you the greatest sense of accomplishment and pride.
We have provided jobs for hundreds of women and put millions of dollars in their wallets. We are also doing the massive job of chipping away at the old structures that keep women out of leadership positions.
You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂
I believe in empowerment through work. Women need to continue engaging in the corporate workforce and rise to the top in greater numbers to effect real systemic change. I hope that my business, The Second Shift, is doing that by creating change in the way companies hire and retain professional women and the way that women look at their career paths.
What is the best way for people to connect with you on social media?
https://www.linkedin.com/in/jenny-galluzzo-12843561/ — experience-section