Kaitlin Maud Moon on perpetual forward motion

Ever meet someone and feel like you’ve known them your whole life? This episode captures that feeling in real time. The amazing Kaitlin Maud Moon was kind enough to join the show to talk to Adam about her non-linear career path and the inspiration for her pursuit of a degree beyond that work. She’s thoughtful about how each body of work informs and enhances the other, and how she tapped into a plan that may have been there all along that.

You can find Kaitlin at her site: http://www.kaitlinmaud.com/ and on Twitter (that’s where I found her): https://twitter.com/kaitlinmaud

Find your host, Adam Pierno at www.adampierno.com

The Strategy Inside Everything is the podcast for people who thinkfor a living. If you have an idea, a question or you want to push back on something you hear in this episode, go to https://thatsnotaninsight.com and leave a message or a voicemail. Music for The Strategy Inside Everything is by Sawsquarenoise. Host Adam Pierno is an author, speaker and strategy consultant. Learn more atadampierno.com.

Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/adam-pierno/message
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Transcript of this wonderful conversation:

Adam Pierno 0:02
This is The Strategy Inside Everything. I’m Adam Pierno. The Strategy Inside Everything is the podcast for people who think for a living. If you have an idea, a question or you want to push back on something you hear in this episode, go to thatsnotaninsight.com and leave a message or a voicemail for me. The best and most interesting messages will be added to future episodes. And I can’t wait to hear from you. All right, welcome back to another episode of the strategy inside everything. Very excited about today’s conversation. I am joined by freelance strategist, Kaitlin Maud Moon. Kaitlin, how are you?

Kaitlin Maud-Moon 0:22
Hi, I’m so good. Thanks for having me.

Adam Pierno 0:26
Thank you so much for joining me. We were going back and forth a little bit on our topic. And I wanted to bring it out of the the Twitter world into the real world sorta via zoom. Yes, yes. So I’m looking forward to to talking more to you. Would you mind before we get into our topic, would you mind giving people a sense of how you got to your current role before you started your own thing?

Kaitlin Maud-Moon 0:52
Yes, absolutely. So I’ll try to make this as quick as possible. I’ve listened to some of the other episodes. And I’d say of anyone’s background, I probably have the most similar background to Rachel Mercer actually, I went to school for art InDesign, and I had intended to be an art teacher. But unfortunately, I graduated at the height of the great recession. So I needed a job and art teachers were not one of the jobs that you could get at that time. I went into advertising, I had actually been working at a radio station in Boston throughout school, and after I graduated from college, and that’s definitely how I got exposed to marketing. I think it was still a bit of an elusive concept for me for a while, until I interned at Arnold in Boston. And I was a design intern there. And my creative director like this sweetheart, she was like, Kaitlin, you are a good designer. But you are a great strategy. And I agree, I think our main decent designer, and I am definitely better suited for strategy. So she got me in with all the people that were doing cool innovation work at Arnold and she had me sit on in on a bunch of briefings. This is like ideal early career mentor, right? Yes, yes. And really putting me in the right rooms with the right people. That’s really cool. It was awesome. And I so I knew that that’s what I wanted to do. At the time, social media was like really hitting the advertising world. And I was super into social media. So a lot of the work I started doing was working as a social media strategist at smaller agencies and client side until I got hired at sapient Nitro, which is now Razorfish, they went through many, many iterations,

Adam Pierno 2:51
they kept on getting absorbed and eaten. And yeah,

Kaitlin Maud-Moon 2:55
you know, exactly. They are a nesting doll of agents. Time to age myself a little bit, they were called sapient, Nitro. And in Boston, their headquarters, they were building a new strategy team. And the immediate need they had was for someone who knew digital and social really well. But the team itself was not digital or social specific. We were a full service agency. And so I came in as that sort of subject matter expert, but the head of my department, Scott Carambis, who I’m still very close with, he really pushed me outside of the digital social world and into learning more of the traditional planning skills and doing research. We were research and strategy. So I’ve, since that point in my career, about 12 years ago, I’ve been doing research and strategy simultaneously. To do like ethnographic work working under him. I got to do focus groups, like pretty early on, and he was like, again, a great mentor who trusted me and kind of said, Go forth and try it out. Hey, and if you have questions, I’m right here.

Adam Pierno 4:08
Your first the first mentor that said, You’re a great strategist. Yeah. And put you in those conversations. Yeah. What do you know what it was that she recognized? Or like what she detected that made her say that? Or did she just say like, you’re not cool. She’s just thinking, How does my design team

Kaitlin Maud-Moon 4:24
I wouldn’t like to think she saw my enthusiasm for the ideation process and my savvy when it came to things like digital and social, and the work that I was doing and the work you often do as an design intern, or in the first few years of your career as a designer, it was very production heavy, it was pixel pushing, and I knew I would have to do that and I didn’t like it and I think I was like, fine at it. Like I said, I would have been a very adequate designer, but I felt like I came alive. In a brainstorm, I felt like I came alive in getting to tell my colleagues. Okay, ready for this throwback about the tagging feature on Facebook. Like the team I was working with did not know about tagging yet. A lot of them weren’t on Facebook yet. And so telling them like, no people can tag a photo, and it has their name. And then more people see the photo. I felt like so in my element getting to do that and bring that information to people. I can only assume she just saw my enthusiasm for that. And I didn’t know what planning or strategy was. They really didn’t until she started introducing me to those people.

Adam Pierno 5:44
Interesting. And then so you went to sleep at Nitro? Yeah, you had Scott there that helped introduce you into more planning into research. Did you do from there,

Kaitlin Maud-Moon 5:54
I moved to California, with my partner at the time who got a job out there. sapient had an office, but it was a small office, they didn’t have a full time rec there for me. And most of what that office was doing was production work, which is like typical for LA Yeah, that was where all issues are. So it wasn’t unusual. They just didn’t have the work to support me transferring to the office. And it’s with these big holding companies. It’s a big issue of like p&l. So I went and they were like, We will support you as a freelancer, we will introduce you to every one we can. But we can’t like keep you and I as much as I wanted to stay. It just wasn’t going to work out. So I moved to LA. Having never freelanced with a little bit of a religion, one relationship with my former employer, and just hit the ground running to figure out how to be independently employed. So I did that for three years. My first project was with Beats by Dre. I had a friend who worked at RGA. He knew I had just moved to LA like within weeks, I had just moved to LA. He texts me he’s like, you’re in LA. I’m like, yeah, he’s like, we need your help on a project. What are you doing right now? And I can I cuss? Yes, Scott. I shoot I shoot you not? He said, What are you doing right now? Can you promise Santa Monica? And I was like, Yes.

Adam Pierno 7:28
You said, is it I’m not sure. I’m really in the middle of something.

Kaitlin Maud-Moon 7:31
I went to Santa Monica around lunchtime that day. I went to that same office every single day, for the next three weeks to help them launch beats streaming music service, which is now Apple Music. Yeah, they needed someone who knew social, which I did. But they really needed someone to take these hefty brand guidelines from the beats brand, the capital B brand, and translate them into what that meant for a digital service.

Adam Pierno 8:05
Yeah, that’s, that’s a real translation challenge. Real

Kaitlin Maud-Moon 8:09
beast, they needed to hire and train an entire community team, which was a part of my my role. That team also oversaw VIP relations. So if drays wife couldn’t get the app to work, for example, that’s who she called. And so there had to be guidelines for how those people acted. What was the protocol for when there’s an issue? How do we get that issue resolved. And after a few months of working there, it really wasn’t that long before my contract ended. They didn’t renew my contract. No, I didn’t know why they didn’t really know why it was all kind of weird. I got the opportunity to go freelance at Deutsche working on Taco Bell. And right after I started working on Taco Bell, the announcement came out that Beats by Dre had sold to Apple for $3 billion. And my team was going to be Apple employees. And the rest is history. And then I was like, okay, good. So it wasn’t me. It wasn’t me because I loved working with them. And I like to think I have a good sense of when there’s a good thing going on. Yeah. But yeah, it was because they were good. Yeah, it felt good. It felt good. There’s definitely like an intuitive sense, I think when a project is going well. And when a team is really working well together. And I actually still keep in touch with so many of my clients there. I’m in a group chat with two people from the VIP and community team that we talk daily about just all sorts of things and music and TV and entertainment. But that was my first project and once you get that first one as a freelancer, it kind of falls out from there because then you have a thing to talk about that you did. You have hopefully clients who were We’re really happy with what you did that will refer you to other people. Or they have more projects for you in the future. So once you get that one, that first one is so so, so hard, but this is what I tell other freelancers, once you have the one, then it becomes a lot easier. Plus, you’re more confident.

Adam Pierno 10:19
I think the confidence is part of it. Because it been part of the in the times that I’ve freelanced. The part of it is okay, I’m busy. But I haven’t done any pitching lately. And I’m starting to get scared even though I’m busy. And this week is full. And next week is full. That feeling of like, hey, Minister, checking my email again and seeing what ya see in what’s coming in. That’s a terrifying feeling. But if you have the confidence that like some will come in, nowhere to be Yeah,

Kaitlin Maud-Moon 10:41
yeah, it took me years to get there. I mean, I have been working for myself now in some capacity or another since then, which was 2013. So I’m at almost 10 years of being a freelancer. And I think I own I have gotten comfortable with it at times. And then I kind of regress, there are certain things that knock your confidence, a great example, the pandemic, you know, things happen that make you wonder, Oh, no, like, Is this the time where it’s all going to dry up? Is this the time where I’ll really have to go back to doing this other thing. Like, for me, I don’t have a problem. I bartended. So like, I also worked service jobs when I was younger. That’s my backup plan. Like if this doesn’t work out, I go back to bartending, and I’m totally okay with that. I also just don’t really want to It’s a hard job.

Adam Pierno 11:34
It is a really hard job. It is a really hard job.

Kaitlin Maud-Moon 11:38
Yeah. So that’s it. I wonder I’m like, Is this the time but since the pandemic, you know, things are a little shaky in the freelance world right now, with there’s like a lot of layoffs happening. I think a lot of companies are just more tightly monitoring budgets and things like that. But I so far this year has been great for me. And yeah, that’s that’s like to this day, short version. That’s what I’m still doing. Working with, with agencies and brands.

Adam Pierno 12:06
I have a question going all the way back to almost your first sentence. Sure. You were educated for teaching? Yes. And like so many people, I’m, I was a classics major, and I switched. And it’s, well, sometimes I’m like, Why did I do that? I could still do this job. If I just kept reading and reading classics. And you don’t know. Yeah, right. Right. I didn’t know that. But so you, you graduated into the recession and made that decision, like, I gotta do something that is going to, I can’t do it. Nobody’s hiring our teachers. And so I want to find a job. What is it going to be? Yeah. Do you think about that path not taken? And what would happen if you know, there was those jobs were available?

Kaitlin Maud-Moon 12:49
Yeah, absolutely. And I don’t want to like steer our conversation too far ahead. But what I would have loved to do at the time, is pursue art therapy. So I had known about art therapy in undergrad. And I knew that that that was a thing that there was a form of therapy where people would do art with people. And I didn’t know too much more than that. The thing was, is it’s a graduate level field of study, it is associated with counseling licensure, it’s very rigorous in its advanced degrees, I went to a state school, it is not abundantly clear by my history, I did not grow up with money. I grew up in a very low income suburb of Boston, I have just all I know, is grinding. And so I was in no position when I graduated from undergrad to take that next step and stay in school for art therapy.

Adam Pierno 13:48
Track was not was not going to happen at that point.

Kaitlin Maud-Moon 13:51
No. And so there is a bit of emotion that I get sometimes, because for your listeners who don’t know, which is most of them. I am now in graduate school for art therapy at age 36. So I just started last year. And it’s great because I’m now in a stable enough place in my life to be able to balance that in my day to be able to afford to go to graduate school, but I certainly am still working through the feeling of why didn’t I get to this sooner. And there is a little bit of shame for me related to i I’m, I’m actually interning this year. So I am an intern again. Starting next week. I have a clinical intern. And the Recon turned and attended is very different kinds of intern it’s a practicum it’s working toward my hours of licensure it’s very rigorous. Yeah, it’s it’s so it’s a little bit different, but equally by perience, my clinical supervisors are younger than me. And I feel like oh, they should be my peers. But what I keep telling myself when those questions for me come up of like The Road Not Taken, and I wish I had spent my 20s doing this is how valuable of a candidate I was to them that I’m coming in with a ton of life experience. I’m coming in with 15 years of facilitation skills, that to almost directly apply to counseling and working with their population, I’m coming in with relationships, that they’ll highly benefit from all sorts of knowledge that they’re getting from an intern that I think most interns would not bring to the table. So I’m trying to remember that as much as it feels like I took a really, really winding road. In some ways, it was a shortcut, because I’m not going to have to learn as much of a messy stuff on the job in this new role like facilitation, I just said this to someone earlier, facilitation is something you really need to get your reps in doing. Yes, you just have to get Conley way to do it is to do it. It’s just got to do it. Like you can take trainings, and you can read books, and I’m always learning new activities to do and workshops and things like that. But the skills of blocking someone who’s being unproductive to the conversation, or being vocal and holding people accountable to what we set out to do, the decisions we agreed to make. Those are things that you just have to get the experience under your belt to develop the gusto to say, to the billionaire in the room who’s funding the project, we’re going to table that until later. Yeah, very similar and

Adam Pierno 16:55
counseling, how do I shut this person down without blowing up the entire day

Kaitlin Maud-Moon 17:00
100%. And you just got to get your reps in. And so in many ways, I’ve gotten a lot of my reps in, I’m not as used to dealing with emotional disturbance, for example. But I have skills that translate pretty directly to dealing with uncomfortable scenarios, and I have ways of being authoritative in the room and owning my confidence. And I think those things make a huge difference. So winding road, and also shortcut maybe,

Adam Pierno 17:35
is weird how they lead to the same place, isn’t it?

Kaitlin Maud-Moon 17:38
Yeah, yeah. It is.

Adam Pierno 17:40
Were you in the times that you know, you’ve been freelancing for 10 years? And we’ll reduce one year? Because you’ve been you’ve started last year? Were you thinking about that winding road the whole time? And saying, like, eventually, that’s where I want to get or were you enjoying what you’re doing and taking it project by project and just keep in building? Mod moon and what’s your, what’s your building there? And then saying, we’ll see what happens in five years? Or was this always the destination that you saw? Like, I think I’m building to this?

Kaitlin Maud-Moon 18:09
That is such a good question. And it was a very distinct thing happened. And I don’t think I’ve gotten the chance to ever really talk about this maybe outside of just the people who know me and know that this is what happened. And I think people will think this is interesting. So what happened was when COVID happened when COVID showed up in all of our lives on March 2020, you may remember this. My husband, he got laid off, he’s a recruiter so recruiters not needed at that time. Highly, highly expended was a rough quarter for recruiters. Yeah, very rough time for recruiters, then. So he, like many other recruiters, he got laid off. My I had just grown my freelance business by bringing on three partners, not that long before it just the year before. And we were really only just getting into our rhythm as a consultancy, and as a group when this happened, and I felt so blessed blindsided, I was like I did all the right things. Why is this happening? Why is this hurting my momentum with my business? Why is this you know, my partner had such an amazing job at the time that he was like, devastated to lose. I just couldn’t believe all of the chaos. That is pandemic thing we never, never, never expected to come had decided to wreak havoc in my personal life.

Adam Pierno 19:39
And it felt like it landed just on each of us in it. Right? Yeah. And

Kaitlin Maud-Moon 19:43
I think everyone has their own version of experience, right? I am so lucky. I only had one kid like there are, you know, people with multiple kids and like having to now you’re doing fifth grade and third grade and kindergarten schooling at home. Yeah. Herman, maybe you know what that for whatever it was, for each of us, it brought this totally new perspective shift where this thing that happened, like we never ever imagined could happen happened. And for me, it was also the first time in maybe my whole career, because even when I worked at sapient, I traveled a lot, where I was not traveling at least one week, a month. And prior to that, I’ve been traveling about half the month, about two weeks a month to client sites, and do in like new business and all sorts of things. And so I wasn’t traveling, work stopped for a little while, my husband lost his job. And I had a moment where I felt like, I really need to think about what I want to do on this earth. I don’t know if other people got to a really existential place. But I was a little bit like, why is this happening? What is this telling me, and I have always wanted to do art therapy, I’ve always wanted to go back to school for that. It wasn’t surprising at all, to the people who I’m close with that I decided to do that. But I needed to do certain things in order for that to work. So I had to take some prerequisites. Art School did not I didn’t take psych in art school. So I couldn’t even apply to programs at the time at March 2020. When I decided like, meaning I maybe this is a sign I should do.

Adam Pierno 21:36
So you saw the sign. And then you’re like, but I’m still five lilypads away from to do it.

Kaitlin Maud-Moon 21:41
But I was like, what the lily pads are really close in right now. Like, I’m five lily pads away. But I can actually take an online class right now, because I’m not traveling, you know, in all the classes at the community college here in Austin, which is like a very well known and highly respected community college, ACC, all of their classes moved online, and were accessible to me for the first time. So it’s like she was perfectly gonna take some classes at ACC. And then that was my goal. I’m going to take classes at ACC and I kept working on my business. My partner was managing the kid, you know, we were we were making it happen. Then I finished my prereqs at ACC and I was like, Okay, my next step is to apply. I’m just going to apply, I have no expectations beyond that. Like, I’m going to keep working, keep doing my clients stuff, we’ll see what happens. Well, they accepted me so that I had a big decision to me like, okay, if I’m going we’re gonna do this. Yeah. How do I make that work? And I everything has just been like one little step in front of the other. Intel now I’m like, fully in the program. I have my clinical hours starting next week. I am off the train has left the building. Yeah,

Adam Pierno 22:56
no, I know. I think I’m glad I caught you this week for for this conversation. Because next week, I wouldn’t have been able to get you off. Do you think the career experience and being, you know, not 21 or 22? Made it? So it’s just like, Okay, it’s just what it’s the maturity of knowing like, it’s just one step at a time. So the next thing is, I’ll take this prereq and then I’ll take that prereq. And then we’re gonna apply because I remember I applied for grad school at UT when I graduated and wasn’t sure what I wanted to do. And I was like a stress case. It was like,

Kaitlin Maud-Moon 23:26
Yeah, I was not a stress case. I think I assumed there was no way I was getting in. And I looked at it as like, you know what, if nothing else, these four prereq classes that I took taught me so much, all of that value, I will be bringing to my clients like for site courses, my mind was just like, so you can’t see I’m gesturing just like lightning bolts inside my brain. Because I had so many different ideas for new frames, to look at things through new methodologies for research, new ways of conceptualizing the work that I did, learning about neuroscience and how creativity works, and how people learn and how I can help. When I’m briefing a team help things be like memorable and tangible for them. So I just looked at it as like, well, if nothing else, I’m bringing this value to my clients, and that’s totally fine. And, you know, they’re probably not going to let me in any way because I don’t have the right experience or whatever story I told myself at the time, and I just had such such low expectations and then I got it. And and I want to say this because I’m really proud. I got a scholarship. So I was like, I got a faculty scholarship and that like really helped solidify my decision to enroll and I was like, Well, I gotta do this man. No, no, it’s

Adam Pierno 24:57
no there’s no backing out of it now. That’s a Yeah, it’s

Kaitlin Maud-Moon 25:00
all just a happy surprise to me every day when I would.

Adam Pierno 25:04
Have you been? Obviously you were kind of I can tell you’re naturally curious and you’re a lifelong learner, but formal education. Have you been taking classes and trainings throughout your career? Because it sounds like as soon as you got into the psych online class, you were like, Oh, I’m going to apply these things right now. You’re just absorbing it. Have you always been doing that throughout the 10 years leading up to it? Yeah,

Kaitlin Maud-Moon 25:26
I have, I have and I have done the IDEO Design Thinking certification, which was amazing. And I highly recommend it, I did it with a team of people that I worked with, we all did it together was super, super fun. I also when I first started freelancing, so in 2013, I did a program called Marie Forleo is the school, Marie Forleo is this like, thought leader, personal development with like a focus on business kind of person. Actually, at the time, it was called Rich, Happy and Hot, be targeted to women, very encouraging for you to like, thrive and make money and be in your power. And her videos, I found her on YouTube really resonated with me, someone else I went to Mass art with, which is the art school I went to undergrad was enrolling at the same time for her Etsy business. And we said we would do it together and be accountability buddies. And so I’ve always pursued learning to benefit me. But I also think like, I can attribute a lot of my business savvy to having done that online program. And I think like a lot of my design thinking savvy came from like shoring up my skills through learning ideos methodology, and I’m very proud to use ideos methodology and like, say, I have that as my, you know, my, my certificate, my proof of experience, I love it. I wouldn’t be in school forever. If I could.

Adam Pierno 27:08
You can’t what nobody will stop you. There’s plenty of courses, there’s so much to learn. It’s limitless. I know

Kaitlin Maud-Moon 27:14
what I know. So this is like, that’s the question that the question everyone wants to ask me. And I don’t know if it’s on your list is like, what are you doing with all of this, and I, like I said, I’m looking at one lily pad in front of me at a time. But I do think it’s likely that one of the directions I’ll pursue or the direction I’ll pursue is staying in academia. So I would love to be a professor, I’d love to get my PhD. A piece of feedback I get a lot is that maybe I should have gone directly to PhD instead of grad school? Because I am so focused on research, and I have a research background and I love research,

Adam Pierno 27:56
and they can take your professional experience and counted towards the Masters if you if you Yeah, some other.

Kaitlin Maud-Moon 28:01
I didn’t know anyone, anyone who’s listening, learn from Adam. I didn’t know this. Yeah, learn from me. You can go directly to PhD, your professional experience as an asset in that regard. Which I didn’t know. I thought like, Oh, I’ve been out of school for so long. There’s no way they’d accept me. But it’s okay. I just learned this. Yeah. Yeah, it is what it is. But I do think it’s possible. I’ll stay in school forever.

Adam Pierno 28:28
But I could tell you’re you’re absolutely pulling every pixel of experience out of what you’re going through that school and now in your internship. It’s not like you’re trudging through it saying I can’t wait to get through this so I can get my PhD. I mean, I can see your face you are,

Kaitlin Maud-Moon 28:44
I want it to last forever. Yeah, I just most of this year, I’ve been working with Nike and one of the I’ve been working with a particular population of people through in doing research with Nike with a particular population of people. And I probably can’t share much more than that. But I want to share that because my experience with psychology and even though I am not a licensed counselor brought a lot to the table in terms of designing that study, and guiding how we facilitated it. What we asked and helped us all stay accountable to ethics, for example. It’s particularly when you’re working with populations who have been marginalized or are vulnerable in any capacity. I think it’s even more important that we be very mindful and how we’re inviting them into the research process and that they’re consenting to every aspect of the research process. And so it is so related to what I do and continues to be so applicable and valuable to my work. I I’m just super grateful. And again, like if I graduate, and I’m not an art therapist, but I keep being a strategist, I think I’m that much better of a strategist because I’ve learned but you’re building.

Adam Pierno 30:11
Yeah, you’re just building more opportunities for yourself. As you learn, you can decide which one you want to do or whether you want to do both. Yeah, why not?

Kaitlin Maud-Moon 30:18
Yeah, it’s, I’ll probably do both. I don’t know. I mean,

Adam Pierno 30:23
it sounds like you have some pretty good clients. So it’s not like it’s not like you need to go find a new job. You’re just choosing, which is the most interesting or what is the next right path? Yeah,

Kaitlin Maud-Moon 30:37
yeah, I’m so grateful for that I’m learning.

Adam Pierno 30:41
It’s impacted the way you approach research and facilitation, has it actually informed strategy work directly in the briefs, or the docs that you’re writing.

Kaitlin Maud-Moon 30:53
So what we know about creativity, is that creativity to work to actually be a process requires a certain set of conditions. You’ve just talked about this on the most recent episode with Katie, which I listened to Katie’s amazing Katie directI loves to use a force of nature. Here’s a huge fan, Katie, there are conditions to creativity, and for the creative process to happen. And some of those are things like exposure to stimulus, new and novel ideas and experiences. Because creativity requires divergent thinking, which means thinking outside of the established path. And to think outside the established path, you have to do a thing you’ve never done, be exposed to a thing you’ve never done, see a thing you’ve never seen hear a thing you’ve never heard. And so I am in a place in my life right now, where I am constantly being exposed to new things by being a student, I’m being exposed to new ideas, to so many perspectives, so much history, so much resilient, brilliant thinking. I’m also in a program that is very social justice oriented. So I am being exposed to a lot of different people with a lot of different lived experience. So all of that influences my strategy work greatly. I cannot tell you exactly how that thing influenced that other thing. Yeah. But I can tell you, I’m a better thinker, and I’m a better strategist. And it might not always be this obvious line from A to B, with the things I’m learning. But I know, my brain is working differently, and that I’m more energized. And I’m more stimulated,

Adam Pierno 33:00
is it like, as you were describing, that I was thinking of, of your strategy work as a cupboard, and it’s almost like there’s more things in there for you to grab now, and you’re not sure exactly how one thing led you to pull it this this particular jar, but it’s like the pantry is full?

Kaitlin Maud-Moon 33:17
Yes, totally, totally. And, and it’s spicier, I grabbed a little bit more spice. You know, I also think there’s, there’s because I am working less. So I I have to give myself time to be the student I want to be and especially now that I’m going into my practicum, that’s 15 hours a week. So my availability is getting reduced a little bit, the further I go on. And by my availability, I mean, my like, hours I can be in meetings, the thinking is still happening, the work is still happening, but my hours that I can be fully fully engaged with the client continue to go down. And I have to be a lot more selective about their projects that I take on and the people that I work with. And I would like and I’ve been lucky to have, but I would like to continue to have clients and teams that find they are benefiting as much from me being experimental in their kitchen as I am that they trust me to add a little bit of spice and just see what happens and that they trust that I am you know, doing the work that I’m still thinking about them and that this is all going to come together and benefit them and so far, it’s been amazing, but that is like a thing I have to be so much more conscious of because I can’t stack projects anymore. I have to my client has to be in it with me and ready to eat whatever I’m cooking

Adam Pierno 34:56
and aware and aware of like you’re not gonna get a hold of me now for five have hours? Yes.

Kaitlin Maud-Moon 35:02
Flexibility. And that is not always a given. And it’s helped me in my communication skills as well saying like, this is what I need for us to work together, and I need you to trust me, I need you to know I won’t be available at this time. I felt like I was good at boundaries before. Yeah, I’m really good at boundaries. Now. My boundaries were very loose before. Now. I’m like I am when I am on site, I am working with intellectually and developmentally disabled artists. And so when I’m on site with them, my phone is not going to be on. There is no advertising emergency that could interrupt me working with my client, you know, on whatever it is they need for me in that moment.

Adam Pierno 35:54
What kind of art is it that you’re working on with them? Is it whatever expression they are drawn to is it whatever kind of there are certain types of expressions that you try for different types of situations, I know you can’t get too into specifics, obviously. But

Kaitlin Maud-Moon 36:12
I can a little bit with this one, which is really exciting. So I am interning at a place in Austin called SAGE studio. They are a gallery and Studio program for adults with disabilities, intellectual and developmental disabilities. As I said, a lot of their artists have Down syndrome or autism. And their artists are working professional artists. Some have done Rick, one of their artists has done work for the Biden administration. They’ve been commissioned by vans, and they sell their work, sell and show their work through the gallery as a part of a big artists community here in Austin called the canopy space, which is like a big I don’t know, like artist building where there’s lots of different professional studios and galleries. And so my role will just be as the on site, art therapist in my job, as the onsite art therapist is to draw out their artistic voice is to encourage their unique expression, and be there to shepherd them through their development as a professional artist in the world. And so some people are coming into this program very new, maybe they’ve never worked before. Or maybe they’ve never had someone nurture their artistic side before. So it is much more like working alongside them in this studio setting, then it is doing art interventions, although that is also a thing that art therapists do that.

Adam Pierno 37:48
That’s what I’m going to Yeah, I was thinking more of the interventional approach. But yeah, I think I could use your help drawing the and during the artistic aspect of myself.

Kaitlin Maud-Moon 37:59
Yeah, I mean, I will be doing some workshops with them. I’m going to be coordinating visiting artists, so other like working artists in Austin, having them come by and do like guest lectures, or we might go do studio visits, we’re all going to curate a show together in the spring. So that’s super exciting to meet to get to do a show. They show at the outsider art fair in New York City every year. So I’m hoping to get to help with that. And as a part of my internship, Sage has been super encouraging of me doing research. So I’m actually hoping this time next year to publish a paper on this. They’re called Disability studios. There are many around the country paper on this model as a form of art therapy.

Adam Pierno 38:49
You were like so in your element.

Kaitlin Maud-Moon 38:51
I am thank you for noticing. And thank you for wanting to talk to me about it. This is like it. I get so lit up when I get to talk about

Adam Pierno 39:02
oh, I can hear it. I can hear it. But I was like you were swimming and swimming. And you you got right to the exact place where you where you wanted to be where you should be. Yeah, to tell.

Kaitlin Maud-Moon 39:12
Thanks. That’s amazing. It is and I mean, I like can’t can’t how you or anyone like where this is going. But I have a client right now, up in New England. They’re called the Peabody Essex Museum. So I’m i because of this work, I am able to, I can talk about it. I like to talk about it. And I noticed that it does attract like a certain type of clientele. That seems to really mesh with my experience in school. And so I’m loving getting to work with this museum. We’re doing some work on like equity and how to make the museum experience more equitable for people. So it is like I’m always surprised by how it shows up and not to be too like spiritual or woowoo. But I think when you put certain energies out there and you are genuinely excited about it, the people who will feed off that find it

Adam Pierno 40:15
usually. Yeah, they are drawn to it. Yeah. Kaitlin, amazing to talk to you. Thank you for making time for me.

Kaitlin Maud-Moon 40:22
Thank you for having me. I’m so glad you’re

Adam Pierno 40:25
able to talk. Yeah. Where can people find you online?

Kaitlin Maud-Moon 40:29
Kaitlin, Maud everywhere. Kaitlinmaud.com is my website. And yeah, my business is called Maud and Moon but hit me up anywhere. I do a lot of speaking as well coaching. Or let’s just talk about art therapy because that’s my, my area of interest in in geekdom right now.

Adam Pierno 40:51
It’s so it’s so awesome to see how excited you are about it. Very cool. Thank you for making time for me is great media. The Strategy Inside Everything is produced by me, Adam Pierno If you like what you’ve heard, leave a review wherever you listen to podcasts. Actually, I have no idea if that helps, or if it’s ever done anybody any good. If you really want to help the show, and you liked what you heard, share it with someone else who you think will dig it. That’s the best way to help the show and keep the conversation growing. New Music for the strategy inside everything is by Sawsquarenoise. If you have an idea, a question or want to push back on something you hear here, go to thatsnotaninsight.com and leave a message or a voicemail for me. If you want more information on your host Adam Pierno you can find it on adampierno.com and learn about my books, speaking and consulting practice. Thanks so much for listening.

Transcribed by https://otter.ai