Oak Communications
August 2012
oak tree
In This Newsletter
Oak Communications

Oak Communications Blog

Past Newsletters 
Visit my blogLike me on Facebook
View my profile on LinkedIn



On a recent quick visit to New Orleans for meetings, my husband and I ducked into the Garden District Book Shop where we met Amy behind the counter. We got to chatting and learned that she moved to New Orleans 15 years ago.


Prior to that, she worked in the high tech industry both in Michigan and California. She was burnt out and ready for a change. Like so many other people, she had visited New Orleans and thought it would be a great place to live.  


She loved to read and always dreamed of working in a book store. So, she researched book shops in New Orleans and wrote them all letters asking if she could work for them.

Those who responded told her she was overqualified. Only one book store owner decided to give her a chance. Hired as a bookseller, she works at that same store 15 years later and is now manager.   


She also contributed her tech skills to the bookstore by helping them transition from a cash register and yellow notepads to computers for sales, inventory and PR.

I was struck by Amy's story for several reasons. After working long, demanding hours and commuting in traffic for many years, she recognized that it was time for a change. She decided to do something about it. She thought about what she loved, did her homework, and then didn't get discouraged after multiple rejections.  


Her family and friends thought she was crazy to give up a high paying job. She had savings and was single, so she had more flexibility than many people.

At the same time, it was a leap of faith and took a lot of courage to quit her job and move 2000 miles away. She knew that she could move back to CA if it didn't work out. She believed she had options.


She said, "I don't need a lot of money. I just need to be happy." She paused, and then said, "And I am. I have time to write, take photographs, and I meet a lot of great people in the book shop."


I was also struck by the owner of the book shop who took a risk by hiring Amy. All of the other owners were not willing to do that. It sure seems like his judgment paid off.  


Here are some questions to ponder: 

  • When have you taken a risk or made a change in your life? What did you learn from that experience?
  • Is there something that you are considering pursuing or changing in your life?
  • What is holding you back?
  • What information, support and encouragement do you need to help you in your decision?

I encourage you to check out the Lagniappe section below which includes additional resources to help you think about and pursue your dreams. 


Be well,


Sue Schleifer


Please share your reflections with me personally or on the Oak Communications Coaching and Consulting Facebook page.   

When I feel the urge to expand my thinking, I visit TED.com and I always find a stimulating talk.

In psychologist, Shawn Achor's talk, The Happy Secret to Better Work, he describes how the lens in which we view the world shapes our reality.

Here is a link to an article by Kyle Wiens from Harvard Business Review about the importance of good grammar. I Won't Hire People Who Use Poor Grammar. Here is Why.



Coaching Services  

Headshot Sue

Have you been thinking about working with a life/career coach? Want to connect? 


Give me a call to schedule a complimentary coaching consultation.   


Check out what a few of my clients have said about the coaching experience. 


"A year ago I met Sue for our first session. Through her probing and listening we pinpointed areas that, with specific attention to my thinking and choices, help me:  

  • be personally more effective
  • move towards a more balanced life

My spouse and employees have noticed a positive change, as have I."

Sales Manager-Fortune 500 Company

"Since I first hired a coach I have been a happier person and a more successful businessman. My company has become much more successful, our employees have had the opportunity to grow to the fullest of their capabilities and everyone seems to enjoy each day of life much more than in the past."


"Sue truly cares about her clients' goals and brings that passion to her work as a life coach. With her fresh perspective and eye for possibility, she helps me find creative solutions to seemingly intractable problems.
Plenty of professional and creative people would benefit from working with Sue, and I particularly recommend her to anyone who needs to get 'unstuck'."
Medical Editor and Fabric Artist

"Doesn't everyone need a coach? From working with Sue, I'm convinced of it. I am spending more time on the activities that are most important to me and have set aside some old patterns (like worrying too much!) that got in my way. Sue is helping me achieve my interpersonal as well as career goals."
President, High Tech Management Consulting Firm

I would love to be a resource to you too! Let's talk.


Sue Schleifer, M.A.


510.316.3319 - cell
Oak Communications

Lafayette, LA and throughout the country

510.316.3319 - cell

Do you know someone who might enjoy this newsletter? Please forward it to them by clicking on Forward email below.

If you do not wish to receive future newsletters, please click the SafeUnsubscribe link below. Thank you.