The first episode!
Humans connect with storytelling. The stories in this episode will help you connect with:
Anne (Axelrod) LaForti
Caption video and Transcript:
Welcome to the first episode of Connection Requested. I am Mark Tweddle co-founder of YouTellYours, where we create online events to help your team show up fully. As this is the first episode I have to admit, I don't really know where this is going to lead. All I do know is that I want to have stronger connections on LinkedIn and the best way to create that connection, that human understanding is through storytelling.
I don't want to talk too much, give too much of an introduction cause I really want to focus on my guest. So here's a question.
What happens if you give someone two minutes to tell the story of their name with no preparation? No one else can tell that story better than them. They're the subject matter expert after all.
My name is Ann Victoria. Laforti. And my maiden name is actually Anne Victoria Axelrod. So we'll start there.
So I was named after my grandfather, whose name was Asa Victor. Although he went by Victor. I was actually wondering the other day, it's like one of those shower thoughts of like, why did he go by Victor and not Asa or Asa Victor, but anyway, and so Victor into Victoria, Asa into Anne. So Anne Victoria.
Anne means full of grace and Victoria is victorious or, you know, things around that. So graceful victory. I try to live that in my life. If I can Axelrod, my maiden name is Jewish. My dad's from New York and his family used to have a self-serve bottle bottling company. So that name, we've got a seltzer bottle, an old one of those, you know, seltzer bottles up on the mantle that says Axelrod on it.
But our last name is Laforti, which means the strong, so gracious victorious strength.
Now that you've heard, Anne tell you the story of a name, how does it make you feel? Would you have talked about your name in a similar way?
I have no idea what my name Mark means, or at least I didn't until I started editing this podcast and, Anne made me curious. And so now I know that Mark is related to the Latin word Mars. And so it's thought to mean consecrated to the God Mars or God of war. I kind of wish I'd known that when I worked in UK defense, though, it's probably best I didn't.
And though that I do know it. I don't think I'd include it in my name story. You know, I usually focus on the history of my family and the fact that generationally, we are terrible at spelling, which has something to do with my last name, Tweddle. Anyhow, no matter what, when we tell the story of a name, we can't help, but focus on our own interests and what we think is important or relevant to us.
So when you see someone's LinkedIn profile or their resume, or even an online dating profile, you often just get data. Lists of skills, accomplishments, interests, and experience, but who are they? How do they see the world? Are they like you? I think we need to tell our stories and not that story about how you single-handedly saved the company a gazillion dollars.
Just simple stories, like the story of your name.
I also asked Anne to tell me the story of how she approaches connection and why it's so important to her.
My master's is in biomimicry and it's an online program through Arizona state university. At the beginning, I was sort of expecting that there would be a lot of connections made, but because it is an online program, there isn't.
And it really is just classes, right? So you watch lectures, you take notes, you answer, and you do have some communication with other students, but along the way, you also have teamwork and group work. And so I was being connected with people who were global. And I ended up meeting one of my best friends, Asha Singhal who lives in Germany. She's from India, and she is an architect.
It's very organic. Right, but the program itself doesn't really set you up, like push you into a career because biomimicry is so new. Very cutting edge, there really isn't an industry yet, and so I decided that I needed to create a parallel structure to my master's program, where I create connections locally, and globally, so that hopefully I can help grow the industry where I live. So I reached out very randomly to the executive director of Biomimicry LA, and I asked him to have a coffee chat and at the time pre COVID, we did just that. And we chatted for about two hours. Since then, you know, I've been connected with Biomimicry LA and now I'm a leader in that organization. I think it's great because with biomimicry, it's a combination of science and engineering and art and design. And literally it's just a lens that you use to look through to see whatever you're looking at.
So it's nature based, it's looking at the patterns in nature and how can we use those as designed templates. And I like to think a lot about how fungi uses networks. Fungi uses networks to be able to share resources across multiple plants. They use networks to connect and share information, solve problems. If one end of the funky can solve a problem that the entire rest of the network has that ability.
And so I'm trying to do that with my network is build real relationships with people, the real connection and hope that improves my ability to reach people and do the work that I want to do.
Thanks Anne. So listener, have you learned something new? I do hope so. If nothing else, I hope that you've learned that Anne Laforti is awesome.
Please share this podcast preferably on LinkedIn and keep on having fun, making the best of connections and of course, SUBSCRIBE!!!