Evan Girard is an Editor with Pearson Learning Solutions, a college publishing company. After a few moments of catching up with each other, I began asking Evan questions for this interview:
Shawn: Evan, thank you for agreeing to be interviewed for the Talent@Work People Reading blog. What causes someone to be successful when communicating with you?
Evan: I appreciate when people are warm, sincere, and have great eye contact. I like people who are optimistic and solution focused. I’m a big idea person and I’ve learned not everyone is like this or appreciates my collaborative, chatty style. I like people to check in personally and then get to business. I enjoy networking and meeting new people and customers. I also like to please people and know they are happy.
Shawn: What are your communication turn-offs?
Evan: People who interrupt, are too abrupt or direct, who do not listen or provide verbal and visual cues indicating they are listening. I do not like arrogance – when I see it I redirect the person because I prefer to focus on positive, uplifting things.
Shawn: What motivates you?
Evan: There are three quotes hanging on the wall in my office because they inspire me: “In the fleeting time we have on this earth what matters is not wealth, or status, or power, or fame – but rather, how well we have loved and what small part we have played in making the lives of other people better” Barack Obama. “In the face of uncertainty, believe in two things: You are stronger than you think and you are not alone” Maya Angelou. “Things turn out best for people who make the best out of the way things turn out” John Wooden.
Shawn: What are the communication trends you are observing in your work?
Evan: People are not meeting in person; they are texting, emailing and talking by phone. Social communications often occur in Facebook. I also notice we are all trying to do more with less – people express being overwhelmed often because the feel like they are doing more work now than they did previously.
Shawn: Knowing you are doing something you are passionate about, do you have any tips you’d be willing to share?
Evan: After attending Talent@Work™ it was clear to me that I am a natural leader; but I did not admit that to myself before the seminar. I wanted people to like me too much before the seminar. I discovered that some people will naturally appreciate me and other styles will not, and that is OK. I do not have to try so hard to make people like me and I can step up and use my natural leadership talents. I came home from the experience and agreed to become the President of the PTA and I also became a deacon at my church. I’ve also noticed I do not get as angry with others, I am much more respectful of everyone and much less defensive of my style. As a result I have better outcomes in my communications. I now have much less stress in communication. I now express my opinions without fear or anxiety that others will judge me negatively – it is just style and there is not one right style!
Shawn: Anything else you would like to share about yourself and your work?
Evan: There is a deeply spiritual aspect to me and participating in Talent@Work™ affirmed me for that – I can be comfortable being my whole self and bring my natural talents, values and style into every aspect of my life now.
Shawn: Thank you for taking the time to visit with us, Evan!