Sunday was Mother’s Day, which for me is always a time of gratitude and reflection… and marveling, if I’m being honest.
I’m blessed to have a great relationship with both my own mother and my mother-in-law. But whereas my husband and his mother have very similar temperaments (high energy, passionate, strong opinions, near-unfiltered extroverts), in many ways my mother and I couldn’t be more different. For example:
- My mother would just as soon have a root canal as be on stage or camera, whereas, to hear her tell it, “Laura never met a microphone she didn’t like.”
- I’m always ready with a quick comeback or a bit of quintessential “Jersey Italian” sarcastic humor, but as mom likes to say of herself, “Every family has a ‘straight-man,’ and that’s me.”
- Mom met dad, her soul mate, as a freshman in high school, and they were together for nearly 60 years before he passed in 2020, whereas I was over 40 before I finally met my match.
- Mom was never interested in college or a career, wanting to be a stay-at-home mom, whereas – to my own surprise – I have four degrees (ridiculous, I know) and a business I love.
The list could easily go on, but what’s most important is that despite our many differences, the one thing I always knew was that mom was in my corner, no matter what. She didn’t always understand my decisions or timelines, but she trusted my judgment and she supported every choice I made for my future.
Growing up, entering into adulthood and even now, it’s the most valuable gift she could give me.
That gift is every bit as important in the workplace: When people know that their boss or overall company is behind them, supporting their leadership development and career journey, that can make all the difference in the world.
And that’s just one of the many distinctions revealed this week on the Speaking to Influence podcast with guest Cindy Lewis, Chief Financial Officer of Coho Partners Ltd.
Cindy shared a veritable treasure trove of insights and actionable steps in areas including (but not limited to):
- the importance of investment in relationships and succession planning.
- how becoming an ESOP (Employee Stock Ownership Plan) requires a whole new level of communication with your employees, and the role of transparent succession planning in creating a feeling of safety and stability among your people
- How to find an accountability partner to help each other safely and privately achieve personal and professional development goals
- The respective roles of vulnerability and humor in strengthening relationships of all sorts
Speaking of humor, last week’s episode of Linkedin Live, “Adding Humor to Work and Life” with guest Theresa Hummel-Krallinger set a new record: in addition to having tons of audience interaction, the conversation was so packed with valuable insights AND fun that we were literally 56 minutes into the hour-long chat before the first attendee signed off… but not without first apologizing in the chat for having to do so and explaining why he was leaving, when he really wanted to stay for more!
That is the very distinction between having a “captive audience” vs. a “CAPTIVATED audience”: Specifically, that the former may wish to leave, but is not free to do so, whereas the latter is free to do anything they like, but CHOOSE to stay! That’s gold, in my book. If you missed it you can watch the replay here.
Not being one to rest on my laurels, let’s break the record: We’re doing another Linkedin Live this Friday, May 13, 2022 at 11AM to 12PM EST on “the Brain-Based Science of Communication” with Dr. Ali Atkison, President of ROI Communication Solutions.
If you’re someone who thinks, “I’m just an average speaker,” tune into this conversation to discover what you can leverage re: brain-based communication to become a more influential speaker!
“Like what,” you ask? How about learning how to create a “curiosity vortex”? Curious? To join the discussion RSVP here.
Give YOURSELF that gift.
Lastly, take a moment to ask yourself who has been in YOUR corner, especially in your earlier years, and what impact that has had on your journey and the joy along the way. I’ll bet for most people, one or both parents make that list somehow.
Sadly, there are many children who are not so lucky. Did you know that in the US, every year over 23,000 children age out of foster care and are left out in the world on their own at the “ripe old age” of 18 or 19? Let’s just say that statistics show that the outlook for them isn’t good.
Most of you know I’m a big supporter of The Adoption Center, a multi-state organization whose mission is to help older children in the foster care system find their “forever families,” (i.e. get adopted.) This year the Center celebrates its 50th anniversary with a gala next week, Thursday May 19, 2022.
Check out this 40-second invitation from our incredibly inspiring keynote speaker, entertainer, and former “foster kid” himself, Jon Dorenbos:
We hope you can come, but even if you can’t, check out the Adoption Center website for many other ways in which you can make a difference in the life of these children. E.g.:
Buy a ticket – and if you can’t make it, donate the ticket to someone else. You can even send me your ticket receipt and I'll find someone to donate it to for you! (They’ll ALL thank you for it, trust me!)
Sponsor a table a the event
- Donate an auction item
- Become a mentor
- Give a contribution of your choice
- And spread the word to help raise awareness.
Even if you just pick one of these action items, you’ll be letting these amazing children know that you’re in their corner.
Thanks in advance, and I hope to see you there!