To say ASTD had interest in publishing such a book would
be an understatement. However, the organization believed
the idea would be best served if they partnered with Jossey-Bass/Pfeiffer
(a division of Wiley Publishing) to expand the breadth
of the project. "Everyone was so excited about it.
We got the contract, and then the editor asked us if we
could write and meet deadlines. It was sort of funny,"
The book captures thought-provoking stories
contributed by trainers, nationally known speakers, consultants,
business leaders and professional storytellers that help
make challenging ideas and abstract concepts more memorable.
The stories are organized around major organizational
development themes, such as leadership, diversity, teamwork,
performance and coaching, and customer service. Accompanying
each story are tips and techniques for maximizing its
impact and learning potential.
Furthermore, the book gives readers the
tools to help them turn their experiences into compelling
narratives and how to link the stories back to the training.
"As leaders and managers, we are all teachers within
an organization, and one of our most powerful tools in
humanizing the mission of the organization is storytelling.
This book serves as a comprehensive guide to unleashing
that power to create a vivid picture of the organization's
and people's potential," says Jacquelyn Fredrick,
president & chief executive officer of the Blood Center
of Southeastern Wisconsin.
"I've been blessed," Wacker says.
"I have a career in a niche that is very fulfilling,
satisfying and it allows me to give back. This book is
part of that." Wacker says publishing the book has
given her more visibility on a national level. She has
been invited to author receptions at industry affairs,
secured speaking engagements and received volumes of e-mail
feedback from industry professionals.
"It has opened new avenues for me professionally,"
Wacker says. "I'm so pleased to have had the opportunity
to work on this project. To have it succeed and come to
fruition - there's a lot of personal satisfaction in that."
Since it was published in May, the book has sold more
than 1,000 copies. Jossey-Bass/Pfeiffer and the ASTD are
anticipating it to be an industry top-seller in 2003.
For Wacker, the last three years have been
"way out of balance" when it comes to business.
She's gone a year and a half without a vacation. "That's
a long time," Wacker says with a sigh. "I'm
looking forward to doing some gardening this summer. I'm
making up for lost time."