So, what do you do?

Earlier this week I attended a mini-workshop through SCORE with Chuck Goldstone, who offered advice for how to compellingly answer the question, "So what do you do?" He urged us to identify the core story that defines who we are, and then adapt it to the specific interests of different audiences.

What he didn't do was give a lot of examples of what a core story might be, so I've been kind of pondering it on my own: What is my core story?

At this point what I'd say is that I help people build and strengthen relationships.

That may not seem like the most obvious description for a business called the Gift of Happiness, but in my mind happiness and relationships are closely tied together. Also, in the massive, 80-year Harvard Study of Adult Development, it's been shown that good relationships are critical for happiness and health as well. (Watch the TED Talk here, if you're interested.)

In a home setting, relationships could mean kids, spouses, parents, in-laws, exes, or neighbors. In a work setting, it could mean employees, co-workers, managers, customers, donors, or prospects. Regardless, my goal is to help people think about those others with a sense of kindness and shared humanity, and act accordingly.

"Help people build and strengthen relationships" is accurate in terms of what I offer -- workshops, conversations, card-sending systems, etc. -- but I'm curious how it lands for you as an answer to the 'What do you do?" question. 

If I said it to you at a party or networking event, would it cause you to lean in and want to know more? If not, why not? If so, what additional questions would you want to ask?

I'm also curious what you say to people when they ask you what you do. How did you come up with that particular response? Does it tend to lead to valuable conversations? What other answers have you tried, or might you be interested in trying?

Thank you for sharing!