I worked with Lauren Stiller Rikleen, our presenter, for an evening Parents' Association Forum at The Winsor School. Not only was Lauren interested to hear what the interests and questions are in our parent community that lay behind choosing our particular topic, she was intent on customizing her presentation to fit our audience.
The title of our program was "Parenting With the Long View", and, in it, Lauren summarized some of the data from her area of expertise about women in the workplace and millennials in the workplace, while exploring those qualities that will make our daughters resilient and able to persevere in the face of disappointments and unconscious bias in the workplace. Furthermore, she gave our parents some actual "tools" and suggestions about parenting approaches that work well in raising adaptable and confident adults. It was wonderful to hear her lay out some of the characteristics of today's changing workplace while using the evidence to suggest what characteristics are necessary for young adults to have a sense of both "success" and fulfillment.
Clearly the work-family interface; flexibility in hours worked and in office time; finding meaningful connections with co-workers and managers; and finding a deeper sense of purpose and meaning in the work itself are all important priorities for the next generation in the workforce. She brought up interesting contrasts between our generation and the current young adult generation as relates to social media, communication style, collaborative skills, and motivators.
Lauren was thoughtful in her content; clearly expert in her subject matter; and engaging for our audience. The Q&A afterward clearly showed us that Lauren's insights and the data she presented had stimulated our audience to think further on the topics, and they were interested to find out more about both the workplace and effective parenting for resilient kids.
Lauren was just the right combination of personable and warm, sharing anecdotes when they would illustrate her points, while showing the expertise of someone who is current with the research on the changing workplace and on leadership development.. Truly, the evening felt like a collaboration, and the efforts we had spent along the way to discuss the topic together --to give Lauren a sense of our community's questions and interests --went far towards making the evening rewarding for the attendees. The audience left the auditorium still in lively discussion about the topics raised.
Lauren's style is warm and wise, a perfect combination.