On her LinkedIn bio, Robin Kirby describes herself as a “former CHRO turned entrepreneur and happier person to be around.”
The road from the former to the latter, however, was no easy journey: After more than two decades and fifty thousand hours of high-level HR work at companies such as Citigroup, GE, Infosys, USAA, and others—Kirby came face-to-face not only with her mortality but also a work/life balance that had gone seriously awry.
“Like a lot of your listeners, I spent so much of my career scaling mountains, hitting new goals, and all those things,” Kirby tells OZ Chief Transformation Officer Paul Bailo on the latest episode of Transformation Matters.
And then, at forty years old, she ended up in the ICU with pulmonary embolisms.
“It was very scary and probably connected to my travel and flying and stress and a lot of things I had going on,” she says. “You would think that kind of life whack would make you pause and listen, but for me, it didn’t. What I did instead—like any good, self-respecting workaholic—was to just pour myself into my job and try to find a way to hustle harder and do more things. Until at some point, I just hit this wall and was kind of curled up in the corner in a fetal position. I thought, ‘What am I doing?’”
The story of her rise from this rock bottom to a true change agent in her former industry is told in Kirby’s affecting, inspiring, and perception-shifting new book, Sparkle: How to Beat Burnout, End Exhaustion and Find a Career that Lights You Up.
To learn more about Kirby’s story, the lessons she drew from it, and how she sees technology—such as the employee-liberating automation solutions OZ provides—as a potential part of transforming a culture of burnout and angst to one of satisfaction and high-value productivity, click below.