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The Mode/Switch

We make sense of the craziness of modern American work culture. It's a podcast for early-to-mid-career professionals who want to do more than cope when work's a lot.


Last Episode Date: 18 June 2024

Total Episodes: 48

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18 June 2024
One Way to Re-humanize the Workplace

I have a good friend who’s a hazmat responder in a UPS warehouse. He inspects the weird and dangerous things people ship to each other: Dead cats. Draino. Deer heads. White powder of indefinite origins. That sort of thing. Working at UPS gives him a clear view of the invis...

39 min
31 May 2024
Use Your Words

Using words well in the workplace is hard. It’s easy to gaslight. It’s easy to lie. It’s easy to exclude. It’s easy to forget what you’re trying to say or who you’re saying it to. This week, the Mode/Switchers engage two poets, Jane Zwart and Lew Klatt, who have ...

52 min
17 May 2024
Should You Say What You Really Think at Work?

A podcast convo about practicing authenticity and restraint--and what both have to do with happiness in working community. Arthur Brooks’s recent article, “Why a Bit of Restraint Can Do You a Lot of Good,” argues, Don’t let it all hang out—you’ll be happier long...

21 min
10 May 2024
You Can Count on Disability at Work

Last year, a friend of mine dove into the shallow end of a swimming pool and very nearly drowned. Today, he navigates his job in a wheelchair and relies on a coworker to chauffeur him from job site to job site. That story invites reflection on the turns that life takes. But ...

25 min
3 May 2024
"Everybody Loves Working Here, Right?"

What it’s it feel like to do your job these days? Vital question, maybe, but the tougher question is, how does your company talk about what it feels like to do your job these days? What’s the HR department saying about your company’s vibe? What are the stories your co...

39 min
26 April 2024
Jemar Tisby on Fighting for a Better, Fairer Workplace

Can We Fight Exclusion at Work? It depends. That’s one good answer to the question above—especially after this week’s podcast with Jemar Tisby of Simmons College and the New York Bestseller author of The Color of Compromise and How to Fight Racism. Jemar suggests...

28 min
19 April 2024
What Gets You to the Top Vanishes When You Get There

Getting to the top of the chain of command’s a pain in the arse. Especially if it’s a pyramid. Very not comfy, right? So pointy. This week’s podcast engages Elan Babchuck on how chains of command destabilize our workplaces. The appeal’s understandable, but the delus...

34 min
13 April 2024
Questioning Your Craving to Belong at Work

A few years back, my family went white-water rafting, a venture that we were pretty sure would entail risk and peril. But we got lost on the way to the river, and so, to make up time, my partner drove us 90 miles an hour, swerving in and out of lanes of traffic, just to get ...

11 min
5 April 2024
Maybe You Need More Tunnel Vision at Work?

This Pod did not end where I thought it would. I thought we would seek an alternative to tunnel vision. I thought we'd mode/switch from tunnel vision to vista vision. “Expand your awareness,” I was thinking. “Take in the context. Read the room, people!” But bec...

18 min
30 March 2024
When Life & Work Collide

This week, Emily, David, LaShone, and Craig discuss how one role you play (parent or a friend, say) obstructs another role (team lead or clerk, say). You’ll hear us sharing stories and proposing shifts in thinking and habit that will help you do more than cope when work’...

22 min
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