The Power of Silence, the Power of Story


The risk of burn out at this time of year is particularly real. Christmas carols after a long tense year cause you to feel even more strung up than you usually do – and the beach vacation (or other getaway) is still at least month away. As the holiday season revs up, extra pressure increases the noise. But take a deep breath and create a little calm to check in with yourself and figure out which voice is the most important one to listen to.

Start by checking in with the messages that come your way, allowing yourself the time to sift through them and prioritise a coherent and consistent response that will reduce the pressure and de-escalate the worst of the imminent tension. If you communicate clearly with your staff when you’re juggling a number of obligations and you’re on deadline, you’re more likely to emerge through the year-end busyness with equanimity on your side.

In this month’s issue, we focus on the stories we tell ourselves, the stories we tell our clients and our staff members, and the stories coming in from outside that claim our energy and attention. Enjoy wise words from Anton Ressel on how to delegate. Listen up to Chris Voysey, who articulates the power of your voice, and the immense importance of telling your own story in your own empowering words. Read a review of Vaya by Harriet Perlman and Sarah Charlton, a previously untold story of Johannesburg, which will lead you to count your blessings, and from the newest member of Fetola’s media team, Kirsten Barnes, a look at how team-building enables your staff to tell the story of your company’s culture.

There are just two weeks left for small business owners to apply for the SAB Foundation Tholoana Enterprise Programme, and we’d be glad if you would help us spread the word. We are looking for 60 excellent emerging entrepreneurs who want to benefit from a two-year programme of mentorship, skills development, access to finance and investment readiness preparation.

As the holiday madness escalates, it’s too easy to become overwhelmed by the sirens of industry, which drown out the voices of sanity and wisdom coming your way. Stay calm, stay clear, and listen well to the guidance that serves you best, enabling your own voice to sound a true note in the midst of the frenzy.

Catherine Wijnberg
CEO and Founder – Fetola