Stuff That Really Matters

“And I felt a change
Time meant nothing
Never would again.”

From “Time Warp”, by Richard O’Brien

I saw a picture of my friend Kathleen today. Kathleen is the Executive Director, Chief Pooba and heart and soul of the Cleveland Restoration Society. If memory serves me correctly, we entered the world 24 days apart, so we are the same age….just youngsters, by my count!

Kath’s photo was taken during Cleveland’s 2015 Community Luncheon. She looks outstanding, with cool glasses, great hair and passion simply emanating from her being. I was so proud of her!

Kathleen, the President!

Kathleen, the President!

Then I looked at a few other pictures of folks attending this luncheon. Boy, there were lots of grey haired people, and folks who looked their age, if you know what I mean. Not my Kath, though. She looked younger and cooler than anyone else I could see in the photos.

Was she? I mean, given the demographic of the group who were made up of representatives of the Downtown Cleveland Alliance, perhaps she was. Or was it what I saw when I looked at her? Did I see Ms. Crowther, power professional from Shaker Heights, Ohio? Or did I see Kathy Hackman, who biked across southern Ontario with me one summer (from youth hostel to pub, etc), and then the next summer, hiked Assateague and Chinctoteague Islands with me (waking up to the wild ponies at the door of our tent in the morning!).

These guys would show up near the tent in the morning!

These guys would poke their noses near the tent in the morning!

When I look at her now, I see etched in her face those memories of the times we laughed so hard we cried, danced to Time Warp a zillion times, sang Emmy Lou Harris songs while drinking Rolling Rock from the can…you get the drift. I suppose I don’t see the 58 year old professional who singlehandedly defines the urban gentrification of downtown Cleveland. Nope, I see a young woman lying on a bunk bed outside of Stratford, Ontario, trying to convince herself to get up and on her bike after a very long night at the pub!

Shared experiences bring richness and a unique perspective to our vision. We peel away those things that are apparent at first glance, like laugh lines or a new hair colour, and see what the individual really represents to us. It can be a gift or a curse, depending on the nature of those experiences. I look into the faces of those I love or respect, and I see beauty, ability and potential. In others, I often see something very different, just what is on the surface.

Can you recognize and use this phenomenon in your working life? When I consider the change management activities that I help shape, I realize that sharing positive experiences between and among change agents, leaders and all impacted by the change makes a huge difference to success. When we are undergoing change, if we can “see” the people who help us with the change in a positive light (much like how I “see” Kathleen), perhaps we can create more successful outcomes during the actual change process.

There are about 23 gazillion change management continuums/processes/activities, give or take a few, that you can find online.

Just some of the "change" literature

Just some of the “change” literature.

But thinking about how I see Kathleen reminds me that those real life, positive experiences MUST be a central part of helping people through change. I must build in the opportunity for those actual experiences into my plans. Sure, I can create briefing notes, build slide decks, host senior management information meetings, town halls and deliver internal videos till the cows come home. But until all people affected by that change share experiences that allows them to really see the good side of the change…and of each other…the change will be in name only. It won’t be anchored in your organization. Or your heart.

Change impacts us all. And the spectre of change, the fear of change, can loam large. But managing change means figuring out how to navigate those fears, recognize the obstacles and move forward with a light heart. It means recognizing a multitude of positive shared experiences that includes everything from grabbing a cup of coffee to dancing to the Time Warp, again, that will allow you to see past the grey hair and the uncertainties, and find the stuff that really matters.

NOthing like a good distance shot so you can't see the grey in my hair1

Nothing like a good distance shot so you can’t see the grey in my hair! (photo by R. Rodden)

 

Failure and its teachings

Failure has its place in the career of a consultant. I learn a lot from failure, even if it doesn’t feel good at the time. Responding to “Request for Proposals” often means putting my heart and soul into something, waiting for a response, and then crashing down because I come second. Again.

The past 3 weeks have seen me on the receiving end of three failed projects. I can handle one or two with aplomb, but three is a bit much. It is time to do some serious thinking about the why and how of what happened, and find the good in these rather difficult experiences.

Janey "failing" to actually grab one of her beverages. So sad.

Janey “failing” to actually grab one of her beverages. So sad.

The kind of happy money can't buy - my amazing friend Marj and her Bobbie.

The kind of happy money can’t buy – my amazing friend Marj and her Bobbie.

Each “failure”, if you allow me to call them that, was unique:

  • I was invited to let my name stand to be a member of a Board of Directors.
  • Bart and I partnered on a proposal for facilitation activities related to First Nations and the provincial Growth Plan.
  • Nicole, Lisa and I bid on a HUGE contract with a national not for profit organization. (We wanted this one. Big Time.)

You know the end of the story for each of these already. I didn’t get the position on the Board, we didn’t get the provincial contract and we didn’t win the huge contract. That’s the life of a consultant, and the risk we take. So what’s to learn?

It’s all in the details, I often remind myself. I need to reflect on my personal and professional priorities, look closely and learn from the experiences. And determine why I don’t feel quite so bad about losing these contracts.

Member of the Board? I wanted the position because I would be paid to sit on the Board! How cool is that! That’s a big upside. Downside? I wasn’t passionate about the organization. I was in it for the money. In fact, during my member interview, I asked them what they really needed in a Board Member. They told me someone with financial expertise. I said don’t select me.

They took my advice.

Small provincial contract? We worked hard on the proposal. BUT (is there always a but?) neither of us was enamored with working with the particular client team assigned to the project. We had worked with them previously, and the personalities were more challenging than satisfying. When I found out we didn’t win the contract, my reaction was “Oh well”.

The huge contract? The three of us really wanted this one. We made it to the short list and landed an interview. I drove to Toronto with my formal consulting clothes on (read: real shoes, not my usual Blundstones, hair brushed, and the casual suit that even makes me look professional). Despite knowing ahead of time, the interview team had not prepared for a conference call, so I had to connect Nicole and Lisa with the 4 of us in the boardroom myself. I had that niggling feeling that the clients were not impressed that I was the only one there “in person” and it became evident that no matter what we said, we were not going to wow and amaze them.

I choose to work with people I like...like Bart!

I choose to work with people I like…like Bart!

I left the interview feeling like I didn’t really want to work with those folks.

And I won’t be.

Learning opportunities? I can always find them, no matter how distant or impossible they may be. Let’s explore each scenario.

The first one is clear – I need to be passionate about what I do. Whether it is fishing, running, or working – without being passionate about something, I get little joy from it. Being a Board member would have brought money, but without being passionate about their purpose, that was not enough for me. So I am not upset about not getting the Board position

The small provincial contract? Bart and I were both passionate about the project. But we had a previous experience with the clients and it wasn’t great one. Had we landed this contract, we would have done a great job and gotten well paid, but been unhappy. Money isn’t worth that amount of stress.

And finally, the huge contract that we wanted so much? Sometimes you just have to trust your instincts. The clients weren’t interested in preparing for a conference call, and my instincts told me that they had made their minds up about us before we had even started.

You know all those websites on the Internet that tell you how to empower yourself to be the best; to recognize and manifest the laws of attraction; to be the fountainhead of information? This isn’t any of that stuff! This is simply me, an independent consultant, telling you what works for me:

  • Find your passion, and do things that relate to your passion. You may not make as much money as others, but you will be richer by far.
  • Work with people you like, and you will help to guarantee that you will be happy!
  • Trust your instincts. Challenge them, yes, but be informed by them.

I had a really great meeting today, with two people who work for an organization that does great environmental work that I am passionate about. I liked meeting with them, talking to them, and my instincts tell me that there might be some future opportunities working with them. Wish me luck!

Some of my passions...my children, nieces and nephews!

Some of my passions…my children, niece and nephews!

One moment, one person = Gratitude

I was driving home from the hospital after visiting my mother in law the other night. I was weary, traffic was brutal, and all I could find were nasty cover versions of Christmas songs on the radio. As I pulled up to a set of lights, I saw a bus next to me in the right lane. I glanced over, and the young driver was wearing a Santa hat and a smile. He waved, and mouthed “Hello and Merry Christmas!”. Then he pretended to reach out and shake my hand.

I started to laugh out loud, and I did the same. We “shook” hands and grinned.

One moment in time was all it took to move me from close to tears to delight. One moment and one person. That’s it.

In our personal lives, and our business lives, it often only takes one moment or one person to make a substantive difference. When my workload seems overwhelming, I just have to hear Bart’s voice or Rochelle’s laugh, and I am back on track. When I am worried about my mother in law’s health (she pulled through the heart surgery brilliantly, by the way), the world is better when I hear my cell phone make the ringtone of my son, or get a voice mail that makes me laugh.

I am one of the lucky ones who can find immense joy in the most inconsequential things: a Santa hat and a smile. I have learned that it takes a bit of effort to become that way, and thinking and planning about it sometimes helps shape the spontaneity of future events. As I was reading the Globe and Mail business section on the weekend, I came across an article entitled “What will your personal theme be for 2015?” It recognizes that in the rush of the busy-ness of this season, it is easy to get swept away, and lose track of those little things. The author poses some questions that can help focus thinking and perhaps help each of us to recognize and celebrate all those inconsequential things that 2014 held, and that 2015 will bring. Here are a few of my answers. Please share yours with me…the more we share the positive things, the more positive there is to go around!

What went well?

  • Duh! I had a great bike tour with Rory, Sigrid and Bill. Just look at us here!

    Post ride selfies!

    Post ride selfies!

  • My NRCan change management training workshops were OUTSTANDING!
  • A new business relationship with my friend
    Janey and I at the Dancing Goat!

    Janey and me at the Dancing Goat!

    Barton

What changed for the better?

  • My relationship with my mother in law!
  • My Information Management (IM) understanding (I had NONE before I started working with NRCan)
  • My level of patience

What were the gifts of 2014? (this one is hard because every day is a gift…but if I had to choose…)

  • The positive participation of the Rep Prep participants in the change management workshops…each interaction with those folks was a gift of joy and learning.
  • My annual fly fishing adventure made even more wonderful by being with people I love.
  • Working with Bart and Gerarda in creating our new company, SHiFT.

What and whom are your most grateful for right now?

  • My new house – I LOVE IT!
  • My business partner(s) – Nicole, Barton, Guy, Gail, Tony…the list goes on!
  • My personal partner(s) – you know who you are.
  • My children – they continue to amaze me

What is your theme for the year ahead?

  • Gratitude – for so many little and so many big things.

It’s Christmas Eve Day, and a new year is just around the corner. I know that in Seeley’s Bay, Whitehorse, Bragg Creek, Palgrave, Pictou, and other places far and wide, there is someone thinking about me, and I am grateful for that. I know that a bus driver in Mississauga is most likely remembering a happy interaction he had with some crazy lady a few days ago, and I am grateful for that. If you are still at work, or if you are already happily eating shortbread cookies and defrosting a turkey, please be grateful.

Over the next few days, I will be on the look out for all those moments and all those people who make a difference in my life. I hope you do the same.IMG_3477
IMG_3588

Drop, clean and move on

Even if you fall on your face, you’re still moving forward. Victor Kiam

I have a curious habit of sitting at my desk and dropping things on the floor. I don’t mean randomly dropping things. Rather, when I am done a project, I simply drop whatever paper or items were critical to that effort on to the floor. I have no idea why I acquired this habit, I just do it. You can imagine that at the end of whatever I’m working on, the floor near my desk is littered with paper and other items of dross, and my office tends to look rather, um, messy. (read: fire hazard).

As if the cleaning staff (if I had any) had taken the garbage can and turned it upside down as some form of protest. At least a day or two will go by before I clean up the mess, which then satisfies my urge for closure on the project.

Because of melting ice – I won’t get into the details, but suffice it to say that my love affair with this cottage is officially over – I had to move my office into the living room.

The new office corner, within warming distance of wood stove, and close to piano/fiddle/guitar.

The new office corner, within warming distance of wood stove, and close to piano/fiddle/guitar.

For the first time since the winter started, my feet are warm while I am working. I can look out the window and see Roxy barking at birds, and I can easily get up and get her when she wants to come in. And go out. And come in. And go out. Ad nauseum.

Looking out the door at Roxy's footprints. She's inside the house now, waiting to go back out!

Looking out the door at Roxy’s footprints. She’s inside the house now, waiting to go back out!

This morning, I decided to deal with the remains of a project proposal that I did not win. Papers, paper clips, reference articles, pages torn from the Globe and Mail, and a host of other bits and bobs went flying onto the floor. My other dog Lucy lay under the desk, watching things fly by with a knowing glance, anticipating, I’m sure, my eventual cleaning of the mess. In a few days.

But I then did something unusual. Having spent the last 10 months focusing on change management appears to have made an impact on my psyche. I realized a change in my behaviour was necessary. Don’t jump to conclusions and think I managed to restrain myself from throwing things on the floor. No, no, nothing that significant or monumental. What I did was congruent with my behaviour; I just sped up the process a bit.

Because I am now working in the living room, I didn’t like the idea of having such a mess in a room that I use for fun. My fiddle and guitars are perched near my desk, and the thought of having to traipse through the paper to get to my instruments wasn’t sitting well with me. What do I do? Um, clean up the mess sooner rather than later? So I did.

Why have I spent this entire blog writing about cleaning up under my desk? Because the very act of cleaning up work from a project I didn’t win has made a difference in my spirit that I didn’t even know I needed. When I found out I didn’t get the contract, I felt blue and sad for a while. The act of throwing pieces of that spent project on the floor was a process that made me stop and think about the efforts of my team, who worked with me to put the proposal together. It made me cherish them even more for their energy and commitment to my efforts. The act of cleaning up of the mess helped me to put that in perspective (even though I thought I already had). It allowed me to reflect, accept, and move on.

My strange exercise of “processing” works for me. Throwing things on the floor helps distill the things that are important, and be mindful of what something means to me. I learned that, perhaps, I spend a bit too much time thinking and re-thinking about what I mis-judged, or what might have gone wrong in my work. I learned that there are reasons to speed up the process now and then, even if it is simply to have a cleaner living space so I can get back to doing those things I love…like playing the fiddle, playing the guitar, or bidding on other, more wonderful projects. I may have fallen on my face, but I’m still moving forward…with a cleaner office and happier heart!

The Angels Return

The angels returned to the Grange House this past weekend.  (For those of you Dr. Who fans, no, it wasn’t the angels who took Manhattan.)

These angels came from Goderich, Toronto, Port Perry, Caledon and Waterloo. Arriving in the middle of the pouring rain, these angels came when I asked for help. I guess that is just what angels do.

I had no closet in this house. I mean, no where to hang my clothes, no where to store things other than the basement (that requires opening a door in the floor and climbing down). The sliding glass door in my bedroom no longer sealed and cold air blew through all the time, and if it was removed, it could house a closet. A call went out a few weeks ago, and was answered by this host of angels. They arrived with hammers, and nails, paint supplies and drop cloths; a trailer filled with wood and every tool imaginable. They brought beer, wine, laughter and energy and more, and before I knew it, an entire workshop was constructed on my front porch!

The workshop emerges

The workshop emerges

Rory and I started the weekend by cleaning the clothes out of an old wardrobe next to the damaged sliding door in my bedroom. Before the first pot of coffee was on, Brian had arrived and was up on the roof, cleaning the eaves troughs. Tony followed close behind and the two of them were a human wrecking crew, pulling out the doors and then hammering the boards…in the blink of an eye, a new wall was built.

While this was going on, Anastasia and Scott were mudding and priming, and the dirty, nasty paint in my kitchen and bathroom was disappearing.

No, he's not doing dishes, he's cleaning brushes!

No, he’s not doing dishes, he’s cleaning brushes!

Dave put his larger than 6 foot frame inside the wee room under the stairs, and vented the dryer, then installing a plexiglass window upstairs. Vito managed to install a mount for my TV, and figure out how to fix my kitchen door.

Vito at work..note the concentration!

Vito at work..note the concentration!

There was perpetual motion in every room, with me, running around like a chicken with my head cut off, making coffee, sandwiches, finding hammers, running errands from one person to another, and generally being completely useless but very, very enthusiastic.

I'm trying to paint the door, but Anastasia should really take the brush away from me!

I’m trying to paint the door, but Anastasia should really take the brush away from me!

This remarkable crew of friends, who didn’t know each other prior to their morning coffee, worked all day Saturday, with 4 of them spending the night, and getting up and doing it again the next morning. “Fruit coloured paint” was applied to the kitchen, the bathroom actually looked refreshing, and the closet was a work of art. The temperature dropped outside, but the laughter inside kept us all happy and warm. Admittedly, I wavered between laughing at Brian’s crazy comments, puzzled about everyone’s dedication and commitment, and struggling with tears of gratitude.

It was quite a time.

I learned so much this weekend. I learned how to make long, careful brush strokes and and the difference between primer and paint. I learned about fuses and power saws. But mostly, I learned about these things:

  • New friends are remarkable: I play fiddle with Anastasia. We’ve only known each other a short while, yet she has given me three days of her life to clean, weed, haul garbage and paint…in fact, at the end of the day Sunday, I just sat and drank wine while she finished the kitchen. I know Jean and Michael from my yoga class. Jean ran the 10K race at the Zoo on Saturday in the rain, came home and dried off, then came over here and worked. Michael arrived with Jean and then went and did all my grocery shopping. These are new friends who have given me their time and care. My message to you is cherish your new friends , because it isn’t the length of time that you know them, it is the quality of time that makes a difference.
    A great post-run cool down, and stylish outfit!

    A great post-run cool down, and stylish outfit!

    Note the headlamp for better colour application!

    Note the headlamp for better colour application!

  • Old friends are remarkable: Scott and I have been friends forever. He splits his life between his home in Bragg Creek, Alberta, and a little apartment in Waterloo. He has no time to himself and he travels non-stop. Yet he gave me two days to help mud walls, sand and paint. Tony and I are fishing and working buddies, and never once have I ever heard him say “No, Susan, we can’t do that”. He just grins and figures things out, and we end up laughing, whether we’re in a boardroom or on the river. He partnered up with Brian to design and build the closet, and then went around to find other things that I needed done, and he did them. Cherish your old friends, because they are a gift that keeps on giving.
  • Trust your friends: Kathy MacDonald and I are two peas in a pod, according to Kathy’s husband Brian. Their dog Rolo was injured and Kathy stayed home in Goderich to care for her. But Brian went out early Saturday morning, bought lumber, loaded his trailer with every single tool known to man, and drove over here to undertake this construction job with nothing more than a hug and a big thank you. He made me laugh, he fixed my eave troughs, he worked with Tony and built my closet,
    The door is gone...make room for a closet!

    The door is gone…make room for a closet!

    and not once did he stop smiling. This was the first time I’d spent time with Brian without Kathy. I always trusted her judgement, but picking Brian was a thing of brilliance on her part!

    Brian in the finished product. One proud craftsman.

    Brian in the finished product. One proud craftsman.

On Monday, I visited my Dad in Burlington. As usual, we went out for lunch and worked on solving all the world’s problems. We reflected on the tragedy in Nairobi, and my father said he was saddened by the cruelty in the world. I agreed in principle, but then shared my belief that there is goodness, kindness and selflessness all around us if we chose to find it. Indeed, I was surrounded by it all weekend.

9 angels. One is related to me by birth, and the other 8 are related to me in spirit. I know for a fact that everyone is surrounded by angels. You don’t have to look very far to find them. And for two days in September, they came and filled this house and my heart with their joy.

It was quite a time.

Getting ready for more!

Getting ready for more!

The sound of your voice

5243718530_d16f48097e_bI have this screen shot on my desktop.  There are many voices that touch my soul and make the crazy vibrations of my life resonate with joy. But every once in a while, when I listen, I find a new favourite.

I moved on Friday. This morning, I still didn’t have running water in my bathroom. There is no electricity upstairs, and it is so hot but I can’t even use a fan. My landlord is 78, wants to do everything himself, and I will be much older before the washer and dryer ever get installed. My life has been turned on its ear and spun about like a whirling dervish.

But I heard a voice this morning that made me smile; grin, actually, and made my poor, chaotic soul stop and listen. My friend Christina called and we got to catch up on her wedding, her upcoming trip home to Vancouver, a bit of work, and general fun stuff. We also talked about how the big stuff isn’t as important as the little stuff, and it is the little stuff that matters. Hearing her voice, and listening to her stories…that made my morning. All the work that I hoped to take place on my house wasn’t as important as hearing her voice and having a chat.

Christina’s voice isn’t like Morgan Freeman’s, who could read the phone book and we’d all stop and listen attentively. But still, her voice makes me stop and listen attentively, because of all the positive things associated with it – laughter, support, friendship, delight and care.

Since my washer and dryer are not available, I had to find a place to do my ever growing pile of laundry. I called Janey, and the dogs and I headed to her place. Janey and her husband Dave had bent over backwards for me this weekend, helping carry, move, drive to the dump, do a million things that friends do to help in a move. And more. Way more. My laundry and I descended on her farmhouse just as she was leaving, and with a few quick instructions on how to use her washing machine (and not burn the house down), she was off. I was left to my own design.

Hours later, Janey arrived home. I was armpit deep in slide decks and outlines of plans, but I heard her gentle voice down the hall. She helped me bring my clothes in off the line, and then she said “Do you see what the birds brought me? They brought me sunflowers!” There were sunflowers poking up in her garden, and she hadn’t planted them. The birds managed to bring the brilliant amber yellows and chocolate browns of the flowers to her garden and she was filled with joy.

Janey talking sweet to Roofus.

Janey talking sweet to Roofus.

It was contagious. I still had to go back to my hot house, and finish working. But I too, was filled with joy.

I got home, and my dogs needed a romp. So off we went, doing something we’d never done before – a walk on a road, not a field or a trail. The deer flies were brutal, and the mosquitoes worse. But as I crested the hill, I saw a familiar car. My Irish neighbor, Colm, was on his way to soccer practice. When he saw me, his face lit up and he pulled over. Down rolled the window, and the sound of his voice almost made me cry. “ Oh girl, we miss you already and you’re only a few minutes away”.

Words are important, as I’ve written before. But the sound, the tone and timber of a voice that carries affection and care is something that can fill the heart before you know it.

Colm, with his son Cathal, who both have wonderful voices

Colm, with his son Cathal, who both have wonderful voices

I truly wish I had air conditioning upstairs. I wish I had electrical outlets that worked. I wish I didn’t have to drive somewhere to do my laundry. But three voices, whose vocal resonation, timbre and intensity is nothing out of the ordinary, is out of the ordinary for me. They told me stories and reminded me what was important.

Today, ask yourself who’s voice is your favourite sound? What is the voice that can pour over all the crazy bits and help you be yourself? Think about it. Then tell them.

Nothing but a song

I went to a conference last weekend. Or to be more accurate, I crashed a conference last weekend. In truth, I hadn’t actually intended on going. I was in Victoria, visiting with my most wonderful friend Marj Welch. We did what we do each year: she works up in her office, I work in a make-shift office at the dining room table. We converge at the end of the day to walk her dog Bobbie, eat our dinner and tell stories till the wee hours. Somewhere in there, we all head up to Cowichan Lake to visit with my friend Andy and family, and play music for hours and hours (and hours) on end.

This year, the EECOM conference was taking place at the University of Victoria while I was out west. The contract work I am doing right now is not related to environmental learning per se, and I was more interested in visiting with my friends out there, particularly Olivia, Sonia and Darrell, than attending a conference. But Holly Arntzen was playing at the Saturday night EECOM event, and she is quite remarkable (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aKH54msZ0AY).  And besides, Grant, Luba, Remy and Sue all conspired to convince me to come, just for the evening. I am so glad I did.

Holly and her partner Kevin, and the rest of the band The Wilds, were wonderful. They were backed up by the Getting Higher Choir from Victoria, and before I knew it, there were about 30 of us up, singing and dancing with Holly and company. The performance ended, and many of us gathered outside to ponder the remainder of the evening.

Which, of course, had to involve more music. The dancers and singers moseyed and sashayed through the residences and found a “campfire” to gather around. Well, campfire, not so much. But circle of chairs and a few cold beers, a taste of Strathisla single malt, and it was anything and everything we wanted! And if you know me at all, you will know that you’ll find me wherever music is being made. A fiddle, a mandolin and a guitar, supported by happy voices, is a magical event and I want to be in the middle of it all.

What I wanted to share with you was not so much the magic of the night, but the connections that music can make. I had crashed the conference. I didn’t have a name tag. I didn’t know anyone other than a few familiar faces. But after a few songs and switching from instrument to instrument, I had a circle full of new friends. I didn’t have a clue what they did, but I knew they were interested in environmental learning and in music…so they were kindred spirits to me.

Interestingly enough, when we took a wee break to refresh, I started chatting with Lidia, one of the singers, a lovely young woman from Quebec. Do you know that she was not interested in traditional environmental learning, but more interested in working with adults, with communities, exploring the role of stakeholders in environmental change? And do you know that I am interested in the same thing? And that without music, without the gathering that brought us all together to sing, I would have never known anyone else at the conference was interested in the same things that intrigued me?

It was music that brought us together but our shared interests outside music that made us both sit up and notice. The conversations I had with Lidia convinced me to beg for admission to the next day’s morning session, and explore, discuss and consider new paths for pubic awareness, engagement and communications.

It was nothing but a song that brought us together. But it was everything.

Post conference tunes!

Post conference tunes!