More Than My Resume

(Note: This is a shortened version of the Ice Breaker speech I gave at Toastmasters.)

What are three things about you that people wouldn’t know by reading your resume?

This was the question posed to our coaches working group, as a way for colleagues to get to know each other. It proved to be such a fun exercise that I thought I’d use it for my Ice Breaker speech today.

The first thing you wouldn’t know about me from my resume is that I have walked among the inner circle of stones at Stonehenge. A few summers ago, my family and I traveled to London; my husband suggested we add Stonehenge to our itinerary. A tour guide purchased a pass for us to access the inner circle of stones. The day arrived, and we drove to Stonehenge. From a distance, the site seemed disappointingly small. Close up, however, was a different story. I spent our hour or so among the stones feeling the powerful energy emanating from them. My children and husband spent the time using the divining rods our tour guide brought. The metal rods spun wildly in their hands when energetic and magnetic fields were detected. To this day, Stonehenge remains a family favorite.

The second thing you wouldn’t know about me from my resume is that I LOVE the beach. I’m fortunate that my parents have a home on Cape Cod, and even more fortunate that they invite me to stay there for a few weeks in the summer. My current favorite beach is in West Falmouth. I walk along the beach, over the rocky part, until I arrive at a smooth sandy area. I stand at the water’s edge and look out. Large rocks rise from the water, with black birds perched on them. It’s the perfect place to stand and think about my life and my work.

The last thing you wouldn’t know about me from my resume is how much I love my work. You would see that I’m trained as a physician and worked as a medical writer before becoming a certified coach, but you wouldn’t know how much I love what I do now. What I love about coaching is that it speaks to the creative and resourceful parts of us. It also provides structure and accountability so people can make real changes in their lives. My clients do amazing things. Every day, I feel fortunate to do this work.

When we shared the three things not on our resume at our coaches meeting, it changed the whole feel of the meeting. Immediately, we became more than our job titles — we became people who lead really interesting lives.

Here’s my invitation to you: the next time you are networking or going out to dinner with a new friend, ask him or her, “What are three things I wouldn’t know about you from reading your resume?”

Enjoy the conversation.