Tag Archives: communication

Sheryl Sandberg and the Value of Sharing Your Story

Sheryl Sandberg‘s book Option B gives us some great insight on the value of sharing and listening to each other‘s stories as a way to learn from one another Today’s post was written by Amy Fenollosa, Director of Learning at The Latimer Group.

The media maelstrom around Sheryl Sandberg’s latest book, Option B: Facing Adversity, Building Resilience, and Finding Joy stirred up almost as much public attention as it did emotion for me. First a friend sent me the link to a television interview, and then I heard a story on NPR, next it popped up in my Facebook feed. I ordered it immediately.

I’ve followed Sheryl Sandberg’s career since Lean In was published in 2013. When I heard the news that she suddenly lost her husband in 2015, I felt her agony. My connection to Sheryl Sandberg was instant and intense. I too, lost my husband when he was in his 40s. My children, like hers, lost their father when they were in 2nd and 4th grades.

Sheryl bravely described her loss and grief publicly, first on Facebook and then in Option B. She called attention to something so universal that it affects everyone in some way, at some time in their lives. Sandberg’s sage, practical guide offers help for those who are grieving and those whose lives touch them. Which means, of course, everyone.

Sandberg weaves her own narrative and the stories of other people who have had extraordinary life experiences to show the myriad of losses that human beings endure and can overcome. We learn of other people’s experiences, their struggles and their victories. We learn the ways that they find light and hope in times of unbearable sadness. We learn resilience.

By sharing her story in Option B Sandberg has started a dialogue around resilience and loss. I’m hopeful that she’s also starting a movement for storytelling. Storytelling allows us to be empathetic, to slow down and listen to one another. In an interview published in the New York Times, she was asked: “Is there hope in sharing our deepest stories?”

I’ve thought about this a lot… we need to create areas to come together, where we can be there for each other.”

Since my husband passed away after a long battle with cancer, I’ve committed myself to creating a community for other families. I founded a non-profit that helps children who are living with a critically ill parent learn to share their stories. We empower kids to express themselves through creative arts. Families come together as part of a community of others who are living similar experiences.  My goal is to help families find solace in communities and help one another through listening to each other.

I’m grateful to Sheryl Sandberg for sharing her story and exposing her grief. She’s a leader modeling the power of storytelling to help build human connections, even in business environments. One of my favorite classes to teach at The Latimer Group involves storytelling. We all have a story — those stories are poignant, captivating and inspiring. We each have something to share. Learn by sharing stories. Learn by listening. You’ll be a better leader because of it.

At The Latimer Group, our individual Coaching services are highly customized and designed to help you achieve your specific goals. Typical engagements focus on developing skill sets in Leadership Communications, Public Speaking, and Executive-Level Business Presentations. To learn more, e-mail us at info@TheLatimerGroup.com
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To Change the Minds of Others, Change This About Yourself

Some of our most popular blog posts lately have been about how we communicate with each other, and the divide that’s so often formed when we’re faced with an opinion or viewpoint different from our own. And while there are plenty of examples we’ve written about from our President on this subject, it’s certainly not limited to… Continue Reading

Clarity and Brevity: The Search Continues

Have you ever sat through a meeting, or a conference call, or a presentation, and thought to yourself, “Oh my god… I wish this person would get to the point…“? Yeah. Me too. Many, many times. We all know what it feels like to have our time wasted by someone who just won’t, or can’t,… Continue Reading

Video: The 4 Skills of Great Communication

Ask anyone who performs at a high level: athletes, dancers, singers, etc. They all prepare and practice their skills the same way. They break their skill down into smaller “sub-skills,” then practice each one individually, then put them all back together, and their overall skill level has improved. The same is true with communication. “Great… Continue Reading

4 Long-Term Benefits of Being a Great Communicator

Being a great communicator is about so much more than the sales call you’re about to make, the meeting you’re about to join, or the conversation you’re about to have… Beyond the immediate benefit of closing a sale, or contributing to a meeting, great communication skills create several significant realities that will benefit you in… Continue Reading

Communication Doesn’t Have to Be Difficult

Communication clarity is really hard in the 21st century… a mantra I have recited over and over in this space. It’s hard because of the noise, the competition for mind share, and shrinking attentions spans. But often the best way to combat difficulty and noise is to focus on the most simple, basic elements of… Continue Reading

United Airlines: Every Day is a Job Interview

Like many of you, I watched the video of the United Airlines passenger being dragged off a flight with horror and sadness. It was an awful scene, and for those of you who have not heard the story, here are the basics… passengers had boarded a flight in Chicago, bound for Louisville. It was a… Continue Reading

Video: The Recipe for Great Communication

The Recipe for Great Communication contains 5 ingredients: Clarity, Brevity, Context, Impact, and Value. But depending on your audience’s “taste” — that is, depending on what kind of information your audience needs — those ingredients may vary in proportion. So, how do we know how much of each ingredient to use when we prepare for meetings… Continue Reading

10 Time Management Tips to Create Better Communication

Simple idea today, that recently came up in a coaching session. My colleagues and I talk all the time about great communication skills, and all the things that help create those skills. We believe that when we take the time to prepare for our meetings, presentations and calls, we will do a much better job… Continue Reading

How to Thrive in the New Communication Age

At The Latimer Group, we speak with our clients and colleagues about the “New Communication Age” we live in. Nowadays, communication is not just about having or controlling information. Years ago, in an era when not everyone had access to information, then the best communicators were, in fact, the ones who could access and disseminate… Continue Reading

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