Episode 123

KAT KENNEDY

Building Software Solutions

Show Notes

10/29/19 | 56 Minutes

Kat is a mother of two beautiful girls, married to her best friend and partner, and the Chief Experience Officer at Degreed. She builds solutions in the software space and lives a goal-oriented, principle-based life. Maybe that’s because she grew up on a ranch? She’s a builder at heart, an achiever, and an executive ticked off by repetitive, unnecessary noises. Stop clicking your pen!

 

As the Chief Experience Officer at Degreed she oversees product, technology, and security within Degreed and client experience. The co-founders of Degreed approached Kat early on (8 years ago) and pitched their vision for work-based individual learning. Kat says she was naive enough to jump on that journey with them, quickly finding out that just because you have an idea does not mean you have revenue. She’s thrilled she took that risk, growing from 3 employees to nearly 400 with worldwide presence. 

 

Degreed exists to give individuals a way to represent and account for their skills and learning, both inside university and continuing eduction on the job.

WHAT MAKES KAT TICK:

  • Building things, grew up on a ranch in small-town Randolph, Utah. She grew up understanding you have to build solutions for your problems on the ranch, there wasn’t a Wal-mart around the corner. The mentality was, if something happens, you create the solution. Now, professionally, she sees too much inefficiency between communicating an employee’s skills with company teams. They help company leaders see the talent and skills entering their workforce each time new hires are on boarded.
     

  • Achieving mindset, Kat’s an achiever. The Strengths finder analysis encourages you to double down on your strengths and then surround yourself with people who excel in your areas of weakness. Find the next problem and solve it.
     

  • Reaching goals, starting small. Her goals don’t really look like goals, they look more like habits to achieve success in her personal life and professional life. She follows principles to live authentically. For her, goals bolster a principle-based way of life.
     

  • Quiet Moments of Reflection. Often they’re quiet for her as she pauses, but not quiet in the environment. They happen when she’s playing with her kids. She asks, why am I enjoying this moment? “Marie Kondo” your life! 
     

  • Working with people smarter than herself. She is no less of a leader, or excels no less in her role for working with people who are smarter than her. Use the knowledge of your team members and colleagues to be great in your role. Your confidence is independent of their wisdom and ability. You are not less because others around you are great. 

WHAT TICKS KAT OFF:

  • Disorganization, she can’t focus in disorganized spaces, the clutter takes forefront until resolved, especially in her home office.
     

  • Tardiness, for her, is a true sign of disrespect. Always be improving to always be on time. 
     

  • Repetitive noises, chewing gum, clicking of a pen...anything that is an unnecessary noise. Sounds like Misophonia.

    From WebMD: Misophonia is a disorder in which certain sounds trigger emotional or physiological responses that some might perceive as unreasonable given the circumstance. Those who have misophonia might describe it as when a sound “drives you crazy.” Their reactions can range from anger and annoyance to panic and the need to flee.
     

  • Lack of critical thinking - taking requests or conversations merely at face value instead of thinking into the context surrounding it and finding better solutions.

CONNECT WITH KAT:

Transcript

Episode transcript coming soon.