How to move to New Zealand from the US

Sometimes, when people in positions of power do things I find absurd and infuriating, I get depressed, cranky, angry, and/or despondent. Other times, I’m more productive, getting all academic, or trying to draw personal connections so people might understand how these decisions will affect real people.

Last Friday, I channelled my frustration into making this video guide to various visa options for Americans wanting to live and work New Zealand:

Here’s one: apply for a job at one of Xero’s New Zealand offices! There are offices in Wellington, Auckland (where I work), and a brand new one in Hawke’s Bay. Last I checked there were openings in Design, IT, Customer Experience, Education, Marketing, Quality Assurance, Sales, and more. Send me an email if there’s a position you’re interested in and I can forward a special internal referral link.

To be abundantly clear: you can’t actually move away from climate change. Nor do I believe that anyone, Americans abroad or citizens from any other country, can escape responsibility for being part of the solution.

But this was still a super fun opportunity to make a video outside of my day job responsibilities, and to learn how to edit video on my iPhone using iMovie. I’d only ever used that program once before, four years ago, and that was the full version rather than the mobile version. I can’t believe how many people have already watched it! Super fun.

I’m not planning to make any more videos any time soon. Of course, it’s entirely possible that news from the White House will drive me to new heights of creativity sooner than I expect.

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4 questions that will lead you to work you’ll love (or: How I ended up at Xero)

Don’t want to read my whole TL;DR story? No worries, here are my four critical questions I recommend to anyone looking for work you’ll love:

  1. What’s the ultimate impact you want to have?
  2. What industry do you want to be a part of?
  3. What type of work you want to do?
  4. What kind of people you want to work with, in what kind of environment?

Read on if you want to hear how I worked through these before landing my job at Xero. Better yet, get your own dream job (or freelance work that you’ll love) by answering these questions for yourself!

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After happily working for myself for over four years, some nagging voices started bugging me. “You’re not using all your gifts,” they said. And, “where is your team? Why do you insist on working alone?” And there was a lot of, “there’s something much bigger waiting for you, but you have to look for it.”

I knew I was ready for something different. And I couldn’t shake the feeling that I wanted a full-time job where someone else would be responsible for hustling my paycheck, and I could focus on doing My Work. But other voices tried to justify the status quo: “The way things are now, you can go hiking or surfing whenever you want!” Or, “what about your weird sleeping patterns? You’ll never be able to work regular hours.” Or the worst, “do you really want to commute over an hour a day EACH WAY from gorgeous Bolinas to an office in San Francisco?!” Continue reading “4 questions that will lead you to work you’ll love (or: How I ended up at Xero)”

The Women’s March, Sheryl Sandberg’s silence, and Leaning the F*** Away

Someone at work recently posted the article Lean Out: the deafening post-November silence of Sheryl Sandberg on our internal social network, posing the question, “Do you do what you think is right, or do you do what is right by your company?”

Here are some excerpts of the article to get you up to speed, or scroll down to jump ahead to my response (hint: it’s about privilege).

Sandberg must be well positioned to be a leader in this precise moment of feminist consciousness, right?

Uh, wrong.

Since November, I’ve heard one phrase uttered over and over by senior women in the Valley: “Why isn’t Sheryl saying anything about this?” To be specific, it started right around November 9, when Hillary Clinton conceded the Presidency to Donald Trump.

sherylsandbergShe defended Peter Thiel staying on Facebook’s board. She defended her boss’s dismissal of the idea that fake news impacted the election. She– not Zuckerberg– went to that meeting and sat behind the Trump water. And most surprising of all: Sheryl Sandberg had absolutely nothing public to say about last weekend’s women’s march, the largest feminist event in our lifetimes. The largest American protest. The time we actually saw footage on every major network and newspaper of what she has been saying for years women need to do: Linking arms and standing together.

and Continue reading “The Women’s March, Sheryl Sandberg’s silence, and Leaning the F*** Away”

Accounting 101 with Liz Mason

When you’re a startup, you only have about a billion things to think about. So it’s understandable if accounting isn’t top of mind. That’s why I worked with Liz Mason from High Rock Accounting to produce this 37 minute online course, designed to provide the accounting basics you need to know to become a successful small business. It covers:

  • Why accounting is better in the cloud
  • Basic accounting definitions
  • Track what’s important (ie, enough to glean meaningful insights, and not so much that you get bogged down in unnecessary detail)
  • Payroll concepts
  • Integrations with other small business software

Small Food Business podcast interview

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It’s always a pleasure to serve as a guest on other people’s podcasts. Back in November, Jennifer Lewis interviewed me for the Small Food Business podcast series. They released the episode today, saying:

Many of us start our small businesses with a broader mission or vision for what we’re hoping to achieve beyond just dollars and cents. In today’s podcast, we talk with sustainable small business expert and author Elizabeth Ü about how mission driven businesses can raise the capital they need in an environment that seemingly values the bottom line above all else.

But my favorite part about this podcast is the end, when I had the opportunity to describe how my passion for supporting small business owners ultimately led me to take a job with an accounting software company: Continue reading “Small Food Business podcast interview”

Nonprofit fundraising with Kishshana Palmer

Kishshana-14.jpgI recently worked with Kishshana Palmer, an experienced non-profit executive and consultant, to produce what was possibly the most engaging nonprofit fundraising education session I’ve ever had the pleasure of witnessing.

Kishshana not only knows what she’s talking about — she’s a Certified Fundraising Executive who has helped organizations raise over 35 million dollars collectively — she’s also a wonderfully engaging person to listen to. I found myself laughing and nodding in both agreement and self-awareness, in much the same way that I might at a good comedy show, dharma talk, or author event. “She totally GETS it,” I kept thinking to myself, remembering how I used to feel (ie, not awesome) when trying to raise money for my own nonprofit organization, Finance for Food.

Don’t wait to apply Kishshana’s insights and action items to your own nonprofit fundraising efforts; check out Fundraising for nonprofits on Xero U!

Good Food, Great Business at the Commonwealth Club

CommonwealthWant to learn more about financing your business, working with co-packers, marketing for increased sales, working with retailers, and more… from a group of kick-ass women who really know what it takes to run a successful food business? Listen to this Commonwealth Club recording of a recent event titled Good Food, Great Business: How Food Startups Take Good Ideas from Concept to Success.

Joining me in presenting to the sold-out crowd were Kathryn Lukas, CEO, Farmhouse CultureJill Litwin, Founder and CEO, Peas of Mind; and Grace Erickson, General Manager, Ocho CandySusie Wyshak, Author of the new book Good Food, Great Business (check it out!), organized the event and served as our moderator.