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Ann Kowal Smith | Building Human Connections: One Story at a Time
Episode 1421st March 2023 • The Happiness Squad • Ashish Kothari
00:00:00 00:57:39

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On today's episode of the The Happiness Squad, Ashish and Anil sit down with Ann Kowal Smith, founder and Chief Executive Officer of Reflection Point, a training and coaching firm that Professional Training and Coaching that uses shared stories and deep dialogue to help teams and organizations become more inclusive, innovative and collaborative. They discuss

Prior to founding Reflection Point, Ann served as project manager for EducationWorks, a philanthropically-supported learning initiative. She has also served as Principal with Heidrick & Struggles International and as an expert with McKinsey & Company. Prior to joining McKinsey, Ann practiced corporate and securities law in private practice with Squire, Sanders & Dempsey, LLP and Benesch LLP and in corporate practice with KeyCorp, where she served as Vice President and Senior Counsel. She is a Research Fellow at EPS@Weatherhead, a practitioner-scholar research community at Case Western Reserve University (CWRU). She has also served as Adjunct Professor and Director of Praxis in Weatherhead’s Doctor of Management (D.M.) Program. Ann serves as an Advisory Board Member at CWRU’s Baker Nord Center for the Humanities and a Fellow at the Center for Evidence-Based Management..

They discuss the use of short stories to strengthen skills such as listening with humility, asking great questions, challenging assumptions, disagreeing with respect, and widening the circle of empathy.


During the episode, Ann explains what happiness means to her, and the importance of looking at happiness at the micro level - the small details in our lives that really bring happiness.


She offers some thoughts on her passion for the Humanities and why she believes it's really the study of the human conversation.


Ann also explains how Reflection Point uses stories to engage people in conversation, as well as the reasons why stories have become part of the common language of teams.


Join Ashish, Anil and Ann for this fascinating discussion.



What You’ll Learn in this Show:

  • How short stories can help build bridges, flip perspectives and deepen shared understanding within an organization.
  • The inspiration behind Reflection Point and what drove Ann to make the pivot necessary to bring it to life.
  • Why learning requires that you ask the right kinds of questions.
  • Why Reflection Point is NOT a 'book club.'
  • And so much more...


Resources:

Reflection Point

Happiness Squad Website

MyHappinessSquad Instagram

Ashish Kothari LinkedIn

Anil Ramjiani LinkedIn

Happiness Squad Youtube Channel


Books:

Hardwired for Happiness: 9 Proven Practices to Overcome Stress and Live Your Best Life

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