MONMOUTH — When Monmouth native Valerie Zaric looked around the contemporary workplace, she saw stress and anxiety everywhere.
“The world is so fearful right now,” Zaric said. “We’re worried about COVID, jobs, our livelihood, and there’s a point where that long-term stress can get to you and be completely draining.”
Zaric, a 2008 graduate of Monmouth-Roseville High School, studied art at Coe College and earned a master’s degree in library science.
Now working in the corporate world and caring for two young children, she’s now combining her business experience and her creative background on a career-themed podcast and radio show to help others — and herself — reduce the anxiety she was witnessing all around her.
In September, Zaric, who now lives in Madison, Wisconsin, launched the “Future-Proof Career” podcast.
On the podcast, Zarcic and a wide range of guests share insights and tangible takeaways on how to learn skills that transfer to other industries create a “plan B” or a side hustle, along with many other strategies to successfully pivot to new opportunities, even during a pandemic and a recession.
The goal, Zaric said, is to talk about ways people can take control of their careers.
“It doesn’t matter what industry you work in,” Zaric said of the wide-ranging workplace stress these days, from feeling stagnant to fear of layoffs and financial woes.
“Future-Proof Career” is also broadcast on a radio station in Madison.
Zaric said each episode features guests who have demonstrated career resiliency by coping with uncertainty. Past guests include a Wisconsin state senator, along with celebrities, career experts, and others from a wide variety of professional backgrounds.
The idea for the podcast had been around for a while, but Zaric said the pandemic amplified her interest in getting started with it.
“The last year in particular has been a difficult one, with unemployment, uncertainty, remote work, and unprecedented stress,” Zaric said.
A lot of people are feeling stuck, Zaric said, and get hung up on negative beliefs that their careers are stagnant.
Zaric hopes the podcast will help people find peace of mind by discovering their ideal career paths.
“Future-Proof Career” is available on Spotify and Apple Podcasts.
For more information, visit www.valeriezaric.com.