Balance of Art and Science
The space where scientific and creative thinking overlaps is my comfort zone. I am drawn to both, but often feel like a square peg in a round hole when I'm alone with either group. However, when faced with a challenge that requires both approaches, I get energized. I excel at delving deep into data and analytics to help make sense of a situation, but I also get inspired to explore a problem through creative exercises to illuminate divergent ideas.
Often I'm the translator in the room ... I hear marketers/creatives "speak French" while the scientists are "speaking Latin." There is enough commonality in their languages that they think they agree. But I see disconnects and opportunities for them to collaborate to find more innovative solutions.
My professional roots are in applied health science. I have an undergraduate degree in nutrition and dietetics which I combined with a masters degree in exercise science. Evidence-based practice was ingrained in my training. During the first decade of my career, I focused on wellness, fitness, and sports nutrition. I was passionate to change peoples' lives, but I learned that all my facts and knowledge didn't motivate lifestyle change. I soon learned that I needed to connect with my clients on an emotional level. Listening to their stories of change and creating forums for them to share their struggles helped them move forward—my facts weren't irrelevant, but they only made a difference when people were ready to hear them.
Eventually, my career led me to the food industry where I landed at General Mills and worked for 13 years on both the technical and marketing sides of the business. My knack for distilling complex health content into compelling communications helped business teams drive business growth for consumer brands, such as Cheerios and Yoplait.
In 2012, I was laid off and went through a transition journey where I sought a new compass—a direction that was more creative and less technical. My severance became an opportunity to pursue my simmering passion for storytelling, so I dove into the expanding discipline of business storytelling. After wandering away from my technical capabilities, I came to realize that my true talent lies in my ability to connect rigorous analysis with stories to create memorable and remarkable outcomes.
Now I design and facilitate strategic planning, innovation, and team-building processes, which (of course) are infused with stories! I also help a wide range of professionals create meaningful stories for their business and professional communications through workshops and coaching.
- Registered Dietitian
- Master of Science in Adult Fitness/Cardiac Rehabilitation
- Myers-Briggs Certified Facilitator
- Creative Problem Solving Facilitator (Creative Education Foundation)