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CW 136: Chris Heinz

In this episode from recruiting expert Chris Heinz, learn how to make next year the best year ever!

Join Bridge the Gap in thanking Chris for his outstanding contributions this year as a Contributor Wednesday host.

Listen to more Contributor Wednesday episodes here.


Your mindset each and every day will have a significant impact on your success in 2023. Are you expecting good things to come? Are you putting in the effort that will allow for positive results?


Welcome to the Contributor Wednesday series on the Bridge The Gap Network. This series is sponsored by Peak Senior Living by Functional Pathways. Each week you’ll hear from a thought leader discussing topics that are relevant and impactful to the senior living industry.

Chris 00:27

Welcome to Bridge the Gap Contributor Wednesday. I’m Chris Heinz. I wanna start out with one very simple statement. Recruiting is hard and retention is difficult. It is not for the faint of heart. Over the past 11 months, I have shared openly how myself and my team go about finding the best talent for your organization. I have let you see behind the recruiting wizards curtain. As a quick recap and just in case you missed an episode this year, over the past 11 months, purely from a recruiting tips perspective, we have covered effective storytelling, creating an effective interviewing process, a winning onboarding process, why people stay or leave, how to find candidates, creating great job postings, the power of the prep, the power of reference checks, making sure you are doing everything needed, not just some of the things that are needed, maximizing your most precious resource of time, and finally, 10 tips to get your candidate. Wow, you know, I’m kind of worn out just thinking about the creation of all of these topics. I truly hope that you’ve gotten half as much from them as I’ve gotten from sharing them with you. For this, my final episode of 2022, I wanna share some thoughts and spend the rest of our time together, specifically on our mindset moment.


Ask yourself this question and please be honest with yourself. Are you great at what you do or are you just good enough? You know, there are many days when I feel like I’m just good enough and teetering barely on the edge of mediocrity, but there are other days when I can do no wrong. Every call goes perfectly. Every follow up email has the right tone, the right amount of humor, and the perfect call to action. Every hiring manager and every candidate agrees to the next step. Those are not every day though. The key to a great day and the key to having a great year is to have more of those great days and less of the barely mediocre ones. And this does not happen by accident folks. Great days are made and great days are earned. So what I’d like to share with you are 10 things that you can do to make next year a great year, and I’ll even challenge you to say, to make next year your best year ever.


Number one, time block your day. Time blocking is a term that’s been used, there’s other names for it, like zone planning, focus, whatever you want to call it. It doesn’t matter. While there are many ways to organize your day, this concept of time blocking is a very effective approach. In other words, break up your day into manageable blocks of time. Whether those blocks are 25 minutes or 55 minutes, it’s really up to you and really determined by how your mind works. But when you are in that focused block of time, only do the activity you plan to do. Whether you are in a business development time, whether you are in a recruiting mode, whether you are sending LinkedIn messages, whether you are focused on your email follow up, whether you are focused on doing your research, it really doesn’t matter. Simply focus on one activity and spend the duration of that time block on that activity. Don’t get distracted. If you are not in email mode, don’t focus on your emails, don’t check your text messages. In other words, focus on the task at hand. Yes, I realize this sounds like great in practice, but much more difficult to do in reality. However, by blocking your time during the day, you will get more done each and every day. 


Number two, give yourself breaks during the day. Now, I realize this is counterintuitive to what I just said, cuz you wanna be hyper-focused in what you’re doing, but breaks need to be part of that. You cannot go nonstop all day long or your productivity will suffer. If you noticed above, I said two different times, 25 minutes and 55 minute time blocks. Well, of course you did cuz you’re really smart and I know you’re smart because you’re listening to this. There’s a reason for those five minute gaps because they allow you to have a break every hour. As they just said, you cannot go nonstop. If you don’t believe me, Google it. By taking just a five minute break between blocks, you will allow your mind and body a chance to refresh. And a key to these breaks is to get up, walk around your office, your home, wherever your office may be, play with your pet. Go outside for just a couple minutes of fresh air. Getting up will be part of that key. And some of the greatest people in business today actually plan a 30 to 60 minute creativity break during the day to completely step away from work. It allows them to be even more focused, energetic, and at the end of the day successful because they’re focused on the times when they need to focus and they’re focused on stepping away to allow that mind and creativity to go. 


Number three, take care of yourself. A healthier you is a better you. If you live a healthy lifestyle, you’re gonna have more energy and your mind will be more focused. I am sure you’ve heard it a thousand times, but I will say it once again, your eating habits and your physical fitness are the keys to you being healthy. But there’s a third element and this has come to the forefront in the past couple of years, and that is your mental health. To take care of it you can do a variety of things from meditation to journaling to a great talk with a friend or family member. Now, working out does not need to take a long period of time. If you’ve read anything about the subject you know that I like to run. It’s like one of my favorite things to do, one of my favorite workouts. But you can do so many things. You can bike, you can do circuit training at your gym. You can do body weight. You can do body weight workouts at home. You could do jumping jacks swims, brisk walks, hit training, which is high impact interval training, hiking, and on and on. Simply put, do something to get your heart rate up. It’ll help you all day long. 


Number four, give back. Be good by doing good. Over the course of the year try to do good for others every single month. While donating money is always welcome, many charitable programs need volunteers all the time. Their programs that serve the community don’t just go on without those volunteers. Food is not served, shelters aren’t built. Children aren’t being supported without these volunteers. These programs need both your time and your donations to thrive. I don’t know about you, but I personally feel so much more fulfilled when I gave my time to help others more than I have done when I just made a donation.


Number five, have a positive mindset. Your mindset each and every day will have a significant impact on your success in 2023. Are you waiting for something negative to happen or are you expecting the other shoe to drop? Or are you expecting good things to come? Are you putting in the effort that will allow for positive results? Your mindset can and will make the difference in your year. I firmly believe this, but I’m a pretty positive guy. You should know this by now, being that I’ve done 11 mindset moments over the past year. 


Number six, have a BHAG. No, a BHAG is not a kind of sandwich. A BEHAG is a big, hairy, audacious goal. This is a goal that stretches your imagination. Jim Collins’s book, “Good to Great,” popularized this term and has had such a profound impact. Here are just a couple of questions to ask yourself when creating your personal BHAG. Does it create momentum? Does it get your juices flowing? Do you find it stimulating, exciting, or even adventurous? Are you willing to throw your creative talents and energy into it? A good BHAG will get you excited every time you think about it. 


Number seven, be organized with a plan. The best way to be organized is to write things down. Yeah, typing it up works as well. But as we’ve discussed above and before, if you time block your day, that is an element of being organized. But what you want to accomplish during the day matters based upon your organizational system. How you achieve in each of those time blocks will be determined based upon how you are organized and planned. This is where a written plan will come into play. My recommendation for you is to have a to-do list for each time block. This works as long as one of your to-dos is the end result you are trying to accomplish. Without these result driven goals, you’re just going through the motions. Some people plan the night before. Some people plan their day early in the morning as the day gets started. Well, I recommend a blend of both. Another thing to do is halfway through the day, take a quick mental snapshot of the day and determine if you need to adjust the afternoons plan and the afternoon time blocks. 


Number eight, evaluate each day. If you really wanna supercharge your performance, begin evaluating your activities and results each and every day. What went well? Give yourself some kudos. What could have gone better? How will you make it better the next time? Where are your skills gaps and where do you need to improve? Asking yourself questions like these gives you an opportunity to identify the little victories as well as the areas of improvement.


Number nine, care more about those that you are working with than about yourself. This sounds really simple, doesn’t it? After all, once you scrape away all the fancy titles that we all have, VP of this, SVP of that, director of this. In our, in our recruiting world, talent acquisition specialist, talent advisor, search consultant, director of human capabilities. At the end of the day, we’re all people, and at the end of the day, no matter what role you’re in, you have the element of being a sales professional. So it is our job to help move things forward. But I wanna challenge you with this thought. Your job is to serve those you are working with. Your job is to make the best decision that helps push others forward. That best decision may not be the best one for us though. From a recruiting and talents perspective, a candidate not moving forward may be the best decision for them, but not for us. One of your key decision makers in your company, wanting a candidate but not getting them, might have hurt a candidate that you found. But at the end of the day, what’s best for the company is best for you. If you always have others’ best interests in mind, you give yourself a chance to build a long-term relationship. These are the relationships that can build careers as opposed to the shortsighted ones that we sometimes have when it’s only about us.


Number 10, have fun. Helping companies grow directly impacting people’s lives is incredibly rewarding. Remember though, we are people dealing with people, have fun with them! Be human. The more fun you have, the more fun your professional life will be and the more fun your personal life will be. Please don’t take yourself too seriously. This is life. It is far too short. You need to have fun. Don’t let anything get you down because it’s all about being a human being. If you do these 10 items that we just discussed, I am confident you will have an incredible 2023 and beyond. You will have many more great days than mediocre ones. You will have a chance to be great because my true hope is that this next year is the best year you’ve ever had. 


Alrighty, folks. That’s it. This is my final Contributor Wednesday episode. I truly hope that you have learned a little, laughed a little, and improved yourself a little from this past 12 months together. It has been my sincere honor and privilege to share my insights on recruiting, hiring, and retention. And it has brought me so much joy to share 12 mindset moments with you. I hope they have made you think about how you can improve what you do and how to do it. Of course, if you have any questions, comments, complaints, or even conundrums on any of these points, please message me on LinkedIn and make sure that we continue our conversations on LinkedIn as well. For one final time, this is Chris Heinz, and thank you for listening to this week’s BTG Contributor Wednesday.


Thanks for listening to the Contributor Wednesday series on the Bridge The Gap Network, sponsored by Peak Senior Living by Functional Pathways. For a full library of episodes, visit

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CW 136: Chris Heinz