Whether you’re a Millennial in the C-suite (or close to it) or the CEO at the helm of a hot startup, if you’ve ever:
- Wondered if you’re “good enough” to be in your position because of your age
- Laid awake at night worrying about how to handle squabbling employees and workplace conflict (and how to manage that one guy who can’t seem to get their work in on time)
- Floundered to run productive meetings on the regular (that don’t cut into everyone’s lunch hour and actually get stuff done)
- Questioned how to make sure everybody stays inspired, lit up and excited to come to work (aka build strong and productive team that gets stuff done)
- Desperately wanted to create change or influence others but didn’t truly know how
...you’re in just the right place.
Hi, I’m Tamara Thorpe, the Millennials’ Mentor, global thought leader on Millennial leadership, published author, researcher, keynote speaker, and the founder of Real Leadership, live and online programs for Millennial leaders.A leadership consultant and organizational development expert with 10+ years experience under my belt, I work exclusively with innovative, influential Millennials in leadership roles to help them become better leaders and make sure they lead with competence, confidence and know-how–no matter if they’re in the 9-5 sphere or entrepreneurs doing their own thing.
Over the years, I’ve carved a name for myself in this space working with Millennial leaders at renowned universities, partnering with organizations like the U.S. State Department and the United Way and hopping up on stage to give a well-received TEDx talk on my entrepreneurial journey. (You can watch that here.)
But I’m not your typical, old-school consultant.
How so? Because although I’m not a millennial, I get you.
Millennials catch a bad rap, even from those who claim to care. Millennials have been called spoiled, impatient, and ungrateful (among ALL THE OTHER awful things–I know you know).
I know that’s not the truth.
Millennials are in a very unique place, generationally and professionally.
You’re insanely talented, driven and motivated, but the job market didn’t exactly welcome you with open arms. A shifting workplace, a major recession and lots of other factors came into play and made landing your first “real job” a total pain in the you-know-what.
But now? You’re not the little guy at the bottom of the ladder. Instead, you’re probably hanging out somewhere near the top of your organization.
Which means that today–with your level of power and success–you carry a lot of responsibility on your shoulders.
And a lot of self doubt.
On any given day, you might find yourself wondering:
How do I manage all these people and set a good example?
How do I deal with internal conflict?
How do I get people to buy into my ideas?
How can I show the higher-ups that they should trust my innovative (if outside-the-box) ideas (especially since they claim that’s why they hired me anyway)?
And crap, how do I deal with all these people who are older than me and think they know everything? 😉
Because here’s the deal (and some very good news for you), my Millennial friend:
Great leaders aren’t born; they’re developed.
One does not just wake up one day a fantastic leader. One must actually learn leadership skills.
What you really need to succeed in leadership isn’t someone else telling you you’re selfish and entitled–it’s someone to teach you the tangible skills and techniques you need to lead and lead well in a multi-generational and forever-evolving workplace.
Listen: I think differently about Millennials and their potential as leaders.
And I think it’s time Millennials start thinking differently about themselves, too.
New leaders always ask me how I got to where I am now.
The truth is, my path was driven by two things: a natural desire to lead and love for travel and other cultures.
I became a leader early in life. At just 14, I created my first leadership training program. By 18, I’d secured my first management position. That’s where I (quickly) learned there was NO such thing as a natural born leader. Like most who don’t understand enough about themselves or others, I resorted to “being bossy” rather than “being the boss.”
It wasn’t until many years later–and after learning several painful-yet-powerful lessons about leadership–that I sharpened my ability to lead and influence others and transformed how I led.
So, where does travel fit in? Well, it was my love for travel and learning about other cultures that motivated me to earn a BA in Linguistics, followed by a certificate in teaching English as a Second Language, which eventually led me to teaching abroad, meeting the love of my life (now husband), living in Canada and eventually returning to school–and to the U.S., some time after that–to pursue one of my earliest passions: an MA in Leadership and Training.
After that, I spent five years teaching, coordinating and leading international exchange programs, until 2006, when I launched my independent consultancy and started partnering with nonprofit organizations and universities to foster leadership and cultural competence the world over.
In 2009, I returned to the U.S. and made the bold move to focus solely on the needs of Millennial leaders. Today, I’m a U.S. ex-pat living in Dublin, Ireland and a well-known advocate and resource for Millennial leaders.
I truly believe it’s my one true calling to ensure that your generation has the confidence and skills you need to be better leaders than the generation before you. (And, you know, keep traveling until I see at least ⅓ of the world.)
Today, I know without a doubt that while leadership is my expertise, Millennials are my people. And I also know that what I’m teaching works. I’ve watched my clients do incredible things as a result of learning high-level leadership skills, including:
- Quitting jobs they hate to build their own businesses and legacies
- Transforming their organizations from the inside out (with their stellar leadership skills)
- Getting the raises and promotions they oh-so-deserve–with full confidence
- And so much more!
Look, every leader makes mistakes, has doubts and at some point literally has no idea what to do next. But what sets great leaders apart from mediocre ones is their commitment to a purpose, their drive to succeed and perhaps most importantly, their willingness to learn.
So, whether you feel like your startup exploded overnight or you’re sitting in (or eyeing) the C-suite, odds are you feel like you’ve suddenly come face-to-face with issues, decisions and problems outside your leadership capabilities.
Yeah, you might be the boss, but that doesn’t make you an instant know-it-all.
Good news: You don’t have to be. You just have to be willing to learn.
And me? I’m ready to teach.
CURIOUS ABOUT MY STREET (AND OTHER) CRED?
:: I’ve been able to work with Millennial leaders at:
Renowned universities, like Meharry College and George Washington University
Governmental agencies like the US Army Corps of Engineers and Air Force Nuclear Weapons Center
Large corporations like Blake’s Lotaburger, one of the largest fast food chains in New Mexico
Non-profit organizations like the United Way, YWCA NM, and the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center
:: You should also know that:
I gave a TEDx talk in 2015 that was so-beloved I was asked to become Curator for the 2016 TEDxABQ Women's’ Event.
The US State Department funded me to hold my flagship leadership development program, Real Leadership Live, in Sao Paulo, Brazil
I was a mentor for young entrepreneurs two years in a row at the SXSW V2V conference
– I’m a volunteer junkie! I’ve been a long time volunteer with CISV International and sat on the YWCA NM Board for six years. I’ve also founded several grassroots projects including WeCycle, an initiative to ensure that all menstruating people have access to menstrual care products.
AND JUST FOR FUN:
– It’s pronounced “Tuh-mar-uh” (Not “Tam-ruh”).
– I’ve traveled to 26 countries, lived abroad in Spain, France, South Korea, Canada, and now Ireland.
– My favorite city in the world is Paris.
– If I wasn’t the Millennials’ Mentor, I’d totally be a Chef. (I love a good meal. Except I’d never NOT be the Millennials’ Mentor.)