Tuesday, March 04, 2008

The People Whisperer?

Yesterday I had a delightful conversation with a business colleague of mine that claims they have yet another nickname for me amongst the business community here in Austin: The People Whisperer. I was at first perplexed by the comment, naturally defaulting to the images of the crazy Dog Whisperer guy on Animal Planet and worrying the unsolicited title was not meant in a nice way. Sensing my uneasiness with my newly appointed title my colleague quickly pointed out that the comment was meant as a very big compliment.

It seems that despite my public confession of being quite shy and introverted that several people simply don't believe it to be so. He told me that the title sort of began as someone's description of my unusual ability to get most anyone to open up and talk. Apparently another colleague had seen me work my people skills at a recent event where I found myself faced with someone who was not naturally conversational or, and his words here, known to be friendly. It seems that I was able to get this woman talking and ended up connecting her with several people before night's end and they watched this person transform by the end of the event.

I meet so many people that I honestly couldn't tell you who they were actually referring to but it's their story so I believe them. It was apparently that out of this conversation of five or six people who know me that the title was apparently unanimously voted on and approved. As he described in greater detail how many of these colleagues admire me for what I doing to teach people and whole organizations why the power of connection is so critical I found an enormous sense of pride welling up inside. I was truly touched.

I can certainly think of a lot of other titles that wouldn't be nearly as cool nor as valuable to me. But there is something about being recognized and admired by a group of peers for something that honestly I don't believe comes naturally to me. People do scare me. I am introverted...I swear! This whole "get out there and connect" mantra that I talk about over and over again is valid but is something I have to push myself daily to do and I know for some it isn't easy. I also know the rewards far outweigh the potential pitfalls that putting it one's self out there brings so I preach it and practice it with religious conviction.

As I thought about the People Whisperer title, I guess I do have a way about getting through most of the walls and defenses that people put up when communicating with others. I have found so many neat people during this amazing Ripple journey because I was willing to take a chance and get someone to open up and talk. There is no doubt that having a strategy and process for taking advantage of the opportunities to connect with those who cross your path in life is so very worth it.

The good news for you is....if I can do it, so can you. Heck there is no doubt you are more likely better at than I am.

People whisperer eh? I like it!

Ripple On!!!


PRINCE RAHMAN, msole said...

Thank you for doing such a wonderful job of leading by example!!

Sue said...

I can tell you that I understand how one can be shy and still be able to charm somebody else into warming up to you. I do understand this.