About Sylvia Lafair
Award Winning Author, Keynote Speaker, Transformational Leadership Solutions Consultant, Executive Coaching Training, Leadership Development Educator, Team Building Expert
Sylvia Lafair, PhD, co-founder and President of Creative Energy options (CEOinc) is known for her ground breaking leadership education methods. She began her career in psychology to explore why people do what they do in personal relationships. Seeing the connection between how families behave and how work teams operate, she developed corporate team building activities to stop office politics and enhance team communication and collaboration. Dr. Lafair’s programs have been utilized internationally and her unique “Pattern Aware™” concepts have proven effective world-wide.
As a noted authority on leadership, a consultant to family firms, Fortune 500 companies, non-profit associations, and entrepreneurial start-ups, her message resonates with the fast paced world of today where everyone must be the best they can be to win at work.
Her insights are universal and relevant no matter what business you are in. Office drama and politics, human resource issues, absenteeism, and litigation increase when stress is high in companies. This is where Dr. Lafair’s conflict resolution strategies become vitally important.
Through team building activities and executive programs she teaches key leaders, managers, and teams how to transform outdated behavior patterns that get in the way of organizational productivity.
Often asked how she was able to connect the facts that what we learned in our original organization, the family shows up at work when we are stressed, she loves to tell the following story.
“My husband, Herb Kaufman and I had developed one of the most well respected personal growth centers in Philadelphia. We invited such luminaries as Deepak Chopra, Elizabeth Kubler-Ross, and Bernie Siegel to lead training programs.
A participant in one of the seminars asked Sylvia if she would work with his senior leadership team. Her surprised response was “Why?” His response was ‘They’re fighting.” Her retort was “So what.” And what he said next led to a career change that has been amazing and totally unexpected.
He was thoughtful when he responded “Look, you work with families and you help them learn to get along better. My team is like a family and they need to learn to work together more effectively.”
“That,” as Dr. Sylvia Lafair said, “was when the light bulb went on. No one else had put the two together. Think of it this way, there are bosses like parents, co-workers like siblings, salaries like allowances, and even time outs called performance improvement plans.”
“The rest is history. Our company made a right turn to go down the road of workplace relationships and it is a double win. My research shows that much as we like to believe our behavior is entirely rational, our thoughts and actions are often driven by the roles we learned in our families as children. And under pressure, we tend to revert to old patterns, often creating workplace drama that diverts attention from the business and undermines productivity. Once individuals see how their stress behavior shows up at work and what to do about it, they immediately take these new insights home with them.”
She has gone on to work all over the world and while there are cultural differences, the ways we respond when stress hits the hot button at work are surprisingly similar on all five continents.
Her leadership program Total Leadership Connections™ is in its 14th year and has been named one of the top leadership programs 2011-2014 by Leadership Excellence/HR.com. Her books, ‘Don’t Bring It to Work’, ‘GUTSY: How Women Leaders Make Change’ and ‘UNIQUE: How Story Sparks Diversity, inclusion, and Engagement,’ have all won numerous awards.
Sylvia has been featured on extensive radio and television programs and is sought after as a keynote speaker, workshop leader, and webinar presenter. She is able to combine humor and depth into her presentations and people leave feeling full of new and inspiring ways to make their lives richer, more meaningful, and more impactful.
If you have not already done so, check out Sylvia’s best-selling books and DVD’s. Discover how your world of work can be more creative and collaborative and filled with the magic of high level success.
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