76 Jen Paxton

Becoming a Leader People Trust with Jen Paxton


In a leadership role, you need to get people to open up to you. Dig in. – Jen Paxton

Meet Jen Paxton

Jen PaxtonWith a master’s degree in Opera, Jen Paxton didn’t think she would have a career in Talent Acquisition, however, she fell in love with helping candidates find the right role.

She started her career at a recruiting firm placing technical professionals, then after a few years moved in-house. She has grown teams at later stage startups like Fiksu and LevelUp and built Recruiting and PeopleOps strategies from scratch at small startups like Logentries and TrueMotion.

Jen is currently at Privy, an eCommerce Marketing platform that helps small and growing brands get from $0 to $1 million in online sales, as their VP of People+Talent. She focuses on building a company that employees and candidates love.

On this episode Stacey & Jen talk about…

  • What Jen wanted to be when she grew up (2:30)
  • Jen’s move from opera singer to people & talent (6:30)
  • Formalities Jen had to shed when making her career change (11:34)
  • Perfection as a disservice to self (14:34)
  • Making the shift from leading self to leading others and maintaining good company culture (19:13)
  • The clash of data and people ( 22:30)
  • Psychological safety, emotional well-being and building trust in a “get down to business” workplace (24:30)
  • How do you measure trust and maintain it in a pandemic/virtual world? (31:37)
  • Dealing with employee loneliness, burnout, boundaries, Zoom exhaustion and other struggles in a pandemic world. (35:30)
  • How Jen is managing her own well-being (40:50)
  • The biggest formality Jen had to shed to get to where she is now (43:10)

Connect with Jen Paxton

On LinkedIn

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76 Jen Paxton

About the Shed The Formality Podcast

Tired of formal protocols stifling your personality and ideas?

Welcome to Shed The Formality, a podcast for smart, thoughtful, accomplished, driven business leaders and entrepreneurs who, for one reason or another, struggle with putting themselves out there.

Each week Stacey Shipman and her guests share their sometimes heart breaking, sometimes humorous, always honest stories about what it takes to more easily advocate for yourself, grow your professional network, step into leadership, stay committed to your work when the going gets tough, and so much more. All while staying true to who you are.

Ready to drop what’s holding you back? Tune in every Sunday for insights and inspiration on how to come out of hiding and become the entrepreneur you set out to be.

Tune in every Sunday for new episodes on Stitcher, Spotify, Apple or online at shedtheformality.com.