Conversations with ATX Leaders: Patricia Hayes

“You are not alone.  You are not crazy.”


Patricia Hayes, a frequent guide and coach for Austin leaders, is a lawyer by trade. Years ago she made a decision to move from a “C-suite” role to step out on her own.  “I don’t need to see the entire staircase to take the next step.” adapting a quote from MLK Jr., Patricia shares how her decision to pivot in her own career has gifted her with experience that now shapes how she is leading others through this pandemic.


What will life look like post-pandemic? Form a business and economic standpoint, some of the most successful businesses of our current time started during recessions or other challenging times.  “When you keep pushing forward,” Patricia shares, “you might look a little crazy.”


Join us as Patricia challenges us to readjust our mindset. “We have common fears and anxieties in our lives on a daily basis, but this crisis has brought it to the forefront ten fold.” We want to address the sense of fear that has invaded many of our communities. Fear is multiplied as it comes at you from multiple sources. Dealing with children as we work from home, separation from aging parents or those that are at greater risks, even a fear of going to the grocery store, are just a few of the challenges leaders are facing through this pandemic. Guarding against one enemy is very different than facing multiple fears. We are examining how to move through that fear, not allowing it to cause us to freeze.


Leaders have a lot going on right now, but with less external support; not having access to those places we would normally lean on. “It’s amazing that it sill comes down to contact with people you love and trust.”  Patricia gives practical advice from calling a friend as you go for a walk, to sending a consistent daily text to check in.


As we move forward, many are putting their dreams on hold, or casting them aside all together, but Patricia challenges us, “You have to maintain a level of hope.” When you are working according to your purpose, don’t succumb to fear or doubt. “You don’t have to squash your dream just because you aren’t sure right now when it’s going to happen.” A great reminder to hold on to hope, and be prepared to emerge stronger and ready to make a difference.