November 25, 2015

JUMP: Why I really liked working with Whitney Johnson

There are lots of inspiring speakers. Books in abundance on leadership and effectiveness. But if you are a real grownup and you’ve bounced around in the real world for a while, you will really like Whitney Johnson’s “Disrupt Yourself”. If you are like me, you will recognize yourself in the pages and embrace the journey you are on in a new way. With a bit of celebration and a tiny swagger.

Working with Whitney is like going on a road trip with a map marked up by a friend. She gives you the main monuments, tells you what to look for, but it’s clearly going to be your adventure. She’s not going to tell you when to jump, but before you are done with the book, you get it. Jumping is better that trying to hold on to your position. Whether you disrupt or not you are going down. And then up.

Hire her to come and work with your team. Here’s why:

1. She’s SMART: The evidence is in her questions. They are good. Really good. Have trouble getting clear about your strengths? Trying to get around your reticence? Wondering if it’s time for personal disruption? She’s got great questions to help you get clear. Answering them was energizing and revealing. And the best one of all: Do I dare? Do I dare? Disrupt the universe?

2. She’s CALM: Whitney talks about scary stuff. She sounds calm. Not out-of- touch calm. Not doesn’t-have-a clue calm. Just the kind of calm that says “we are all going to navigate through disruption and be glad for it”. And if you happen to be a natural born disruptor, you will see that you have a gift to be managed not a dysfunction to be controlled.

3. She’s PREPARED: She’s a pro. She hits the mark. Moves the sessions along. If you hire speakers, hire her and breathe a big sigh of relief because she’s going to deliver. Her message reinforces her book and she knows how to lead audiences through the steps of disruption, weaving in and out of stories that illustrate the journey.

4. She’s GRACIOUS: Whitney pays thoughtful attention to each person. The audience member with a question. The person with a book waiting in a long line to speak to her. The leader looking for encouragement. Kind and generous responses for everyone. In a frantic, hurried, ego driven world — she has time for you.

Go on. Disrupt Yourself. Jump. Dare you.

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