The Space Between

December 14th, 2012 | Shonali Burke | 14 Comments

on the road in alaskaI had a marathon “start getting caught up on WUL” session yesterday (in fact, I’m typing this at 3:30 am today, though you won’t read it for a few hours more). You know the drill, if you publish a blog (especially one with multiple contributors), tweak this, clean up that, etcetera etcetera.

Part of that entailed going through several old posts from the WUL team members, and as I was doing so, I realized that they all have dominant themes.

Kirk Hazlett’s posts, for example, often reinforce the strong customer service element in good public relations and how, while “it’s not rocket science,” it does take hard work.

Howie Goldfarb is our contrarian – and I say that in a good way. Whether he’s talking about Apple or Facebook (oh boy, Facebook), he’s the one looking at things from a different angle.

Shanan Sorochynski’s posts show clearly how she’s someone who figures things out. She fixes things.

This is not to say any of their posts are boring, or that they are predictable.

On the contrary; as I was reading through their posts (as well as those of the other remarkably talented bloggers I’m so proud to host here), I was struck by how, despite using different examples, or sharing different stories, there were dominant themes for every. Single. One of them.

Which made me wonder: what’s my theme?

I think my theme is connection. That’s what my very first post was about, and that’s what I keep coming back to, when I write, or teach, or work with clients, or speak.

For me, life is about making connections. Not just connections for myself, but connections for other people as well. I don’t think I could stop doing that if I wanted to, it just… happens.

And it gives me such joy. I think that’s why I do it.

Which is why I think the theme for this year’s TEDxAdamsMorganWomen event – “the space between” – resonated so strongly with me.

The reason I love working in the field of public relations and digital media is that I love seeing how people use the communication platforms of their times to transcend space, time, and distance, and do extraordinary things.

And they are able to do those extraordinary things because they make the right connections. Usually with others, but often with themselves, their dreams, their desires.

So that was what my talk was built around. Many of you wanted to know when it would be online… and now it is! Here you go:

I was truly honored to speak at this remarkable event; it will forever be a highlight of my life.

Not just because it’s such an esteemed forum, but because of the connection I felt with the other people in the room, and the many relationships I know will grow out of that single afternoon.

Life is really amazing, isn’t it?

What’s your theme? And don’t tell me you don’t have one, I know you do. Do share, I’d love to know!

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Shonali Burke
Head honcho of Waxing UnLyrical, Shonali Burke is President & CEO of Shonali Burke Consulting, Inc. Based in the Washington, D.C., area, she loves helping for- and non-profit clients, both small and large, turn corporate codswallop into community cool™. She also loves ABBA, bacon, cooking, dogs, and Elvis. Wouldn't you like to be in her kitchen?
Shonali Burke
Shonali Burke
Shonali Burke

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14 comments
Rick Henry
Rick Henry

Shonali, your speaking engagement organizer / agent must be be seeing dollar signs in front of his eyes. Your TEDx talk made the point; connecting has less limitation than ever before, and it feels as comfortable as old shoes, as long as we let it happen. Well done, young lady!

rachaelseda
rachaelseda

Even more amazing then I could have imagined. As soon as I saw you posted this I just had to watch it! LOVE it! Gosh I want to know what you thought I am when you read my posts, I'm trying to think but I'm just not sure!

MattLaCasse
MattLaCasse

I'd like to think I don't have a theme other than whatever pops into my head, but I suspect it would most closely align with headlines. I like to write about topical stuff and offer my interpretation of it. I'm with @HowieG. I'm excited to watch your TEDx!

Howie Goldfarb
Howie Goldfarb

So. Excited. To. Watch. Your. TEDx. Presentation!

Interesting post @Shonali  because I met you as I have met a lot of great folks from @ginidietrich  and Spin sucks. I remember your follow friday and how well you took my comments. And how your dedicated work in Public Radio Measurement always has me in awe. You definitely are a great connector. You also are very supportive of people and like me (and gini) we tend to be very open about life and work so people know you are genuine.

And seriously where do you meet all these great people who blog here?

Shonali
Shonali moderator

@Rick Henry How kind of you, Rick - thank you! And thank you for stopping by... I think that's a first! I hope you're well - I greatly enjoyed catching up in Orlando a few months ago and hope it's not too long before we can do so again.

Shonali
Shonali moderator

@rachaelseda Thank you!

When I read your posts, I see someone who really tries to get to the bottom of a situation - you leave no stone unturned, almost like a reporter, and I think that's a great quality. I think you want to do justice to the situation/person you're talking to/writing about, so you do everything in your power to make sure that happens. Am I right?

Shonali
Shonali moderator

@MattLaCasse You do like to write about topical stuff. One of your themes that sticks out to me is experimentation - you really like to try new things and they're not always what everyone else is trying. That is something that makes you very interesting to me.

Did you and @HowieG watch the talk yet? I want to know what you think!!!

Shonali
Shonali moderator

@HowieG Aww, thank you, my friend. I am SO happy and proud to call you "friend" *and* blogging compatriot! 

Isn't it interesting how people come up on one? Re: the WUL bloggers... well, @narciso17 and I met through Twitter, and I thought he was Very Funny Because He Always Sent Out Tweets Like This. ;) So I asked him to guest blog & he was GB #1 (and we just chatted via phone a while back!). Mostly they are folks I met via social, often Twitter, sometimes via #measurePR, sometimes as commenters on other blogs (like you!). And some, like @_vhclarke who is new to the team, pitched WUL and I was so impressed by their post and how they conducted themselves that I invited them to join.

Do you think I got your theme right, Howie? @ginidietrich is another great connector. Also @kdpaine (and she is REALLY the queen of measurement!). You should read her & @kanter new book, there will be a post on it on WUL soon - it's terrific!

Howie Goldfarb
Howie Goldfarb

@Shonali @HowieG You definitely nailed my Alien persona ;-) So @kdpaine lives in N.H. I see! Thank you for the two connections. 2013 is going to be a great year for WUL and you and I professionally

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