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The Inspiring Story Of Lil The Tea Lady: How Connection Can Put Status In The Shadows

By Jacqueline Frost with Jan Sinclair

In the latest episode of Finding Your EPIC, host Jacqueline Frost sits down with Jan Sinclair, Senior Client Development Partner at The Centre For Inclusive Leadership, inclusion consultant, and business coach. They discuss the power of connection, its ability to supersede status, and why every role is as important as the next.  

For the full conversation, Finding Your EPIC  is available here

Finding opportunity where you least expect it

There’s no one better to tell us about finding opportunity where you least expect it than Jan Sinclair.

The story she shares with us in Episode 3 of the Finding Your EPIC podcast is somewhat of an “origin story” that equipped Jan with the valuable skills she used to build the successful career she has today.

And it all started with a tea lady! 

It’s not just about status or seniority – it’s about connection

Today, as Senior Client Development Partner at The Centre For Inclusive Leadership, Jan credits Lil, a tea lady she met when she was just 18.

Jan: “I’ve carried a bit of Lil with me. Every time I meet somebody I think, ‘Okay, what would Lil do?’ And she would just sit and listen and have a cup of tea – just have a conversation.”

Connection breeds connection. For Jan, Lil’s influence highlighted the importance of connection as a foundation for success: both in business and our personal lives. We all want to be understood. Making people feel good about themselves opens doors to increasingly greater connections. And of course, this is where we can find some of the best opportunities.

Jan leaves us with a quote from the great Eleanor Roosevelt:

“Some people are going to leave a mark on this world, while others will leave a stain.” 

That’s what Lil did for Jan: left a wonderful mark. 

How can you leave a wonderful mark on others?

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Listen to the full discussion with Jan here. For more on Jan, visit her on LinkedIn.

Finding Your EPIC releases new episodes weekly here. More on Elevate Talent and Jacqueline Frost can be found here.