THREE WAYS I CAN HELP
1. I’ll help you ask the right questions.
People only need big ideas when they have questions only a big idea will answer.
Learning only happens when it has to happen—only when people feel truly alarmed or intrigued, curious or perplexed. To get your big idea across, you need a way to make people ask the question that your idea can answer. After many years of teaching new ideas to everyone from grad students to lobbyists, I can help you frame the questions that open minds and hearts to learning.
2. I GET WHY THIS IS TOUGH.
Communicating isn’t hard because you’re doing something wrong. Communicating is hard because it’s hard.
Sometimes people suppose that communication should be as effortless for you and me as purring is for kittens. But in fact, communicating is a very difficult thing to do — especially when you’re trying to express ideas that are new, complex or challenging. Teaching people to communicate big ideas is what I do for a living.
Over the years, I’ve helped all kinds of people set their biggest ideas free — journalists, social workers, CEOs, and many hundreds of college students — in media from stump speeches to pitch decks to white papers. The skills I’ve developed along the way are powerful, flexible, and humane.
If you are having some trouble communicating an idea that matters to you, here’s a series of nudges that might help:
Tell me the question that your idea can answer.
Tell me the story of how you came to ask that question.
Tell me why you care.
3. I’m strange (in a helpful way).
People tend to work with others who share similar ways of thinking. Working with minds like your own lets you get work done efficiently, but it can also keep you trapped in common patterns of thought. When a problem has you stumped, an infusion of cognitive diversity can help you break through it. That’s where I can help.
My résumé is full of unusual knowledge and odd ways of thinking. Over the years I’ve learned and taught about philosophy, languages, literary criticism, poetics, political theory, cultural history, and more philosophy. More recently, I’ve learned about trauma healing, dark ecology, adhesives, and health policy (among other things). Thanks to this strange assortment of knowledge and knowhow, there’s no idea so big or weird that I can’t help you express it.