Media Kit – Julie Benezet

Media Kit

About:

Julie Benezet has devoted her working life to exploring the new, building businesses and helping others do the same. She developed Amazon’s first global real estate organization, worked many years as a finance lawyer, and led the growth of several successful businesses. She now consults, writes, and speaks on living and leading in the twenty-first century and decoding human behavior in the face of change.

Contact Information:

Email: Julie@juliebenezet.com
Tel: 206-295-5747
Skype ID: juliebenezet

woman wandering the sunset

The Journal of Not Knowing
Press Release

Living and Leading in the 21st Century Means Going Toward Rather
Than Away from the Discomfort of Change

New companion workbook for The Journey of Not Knowing offers a deep dive into the scariness and opportunities that come with change.

Ashland, Oregon, October 9, 2018 – There can be no doubt that the twenty-first century changed all the rules. While life in the 20th century was local and manageable, the rise of the internet ended that. With its global reach and instant transmission of massive amounts of information, we now inhabit a fast, hyperconnected world. Constant change is the norm, making life feel unpredictable, out of our control, and uncomfortable.

At least, that is one way of looking at it.

“The key to living and leading in the twenty-first century is to see its constantly shifting, unpredictable world not as a threat but as an opportunity,” Says author Julie Benezet. “Instead of running away from uncertainty, we can treat the unknown as a source of adventure, one that is rich with opportunities to make a difference to our teams, customers, and communities. Best of all, exploring new possibilities can bring meaning to our lives as we improve the lives of others.”

The Journal of Not Knowing (Morton Hill Press, October 9, 2018, 978-0-9978139-2-0; $19.95, http://juliebenezet.com) provides a workbook of thought-provoking questions, exercises, and tools to guide individuals and groups on a mission of self-discovery to confront the scariness of change and achieve something better.

Julie Benezet has devoted her professional life to exploring the new, building businesses and helping others do the same. She currently works as an executive consultant, coach and teacher, following 25 years in business and law. She is the founder of The Journey of Not Knowing®, a leadership development program that teaches its executives how to navigate the new. She speaks and writes on living and leading in the twenty-first century and decoding human behavior in the face of change. Her book, The Journey of Not Knowing: How 21st Century Leaders Can Chart a Course Where There Is None, received a 2017 Benjamin Franklin Gold Medal and the 2016 Foreword INDIES Book of the Year Silver Medal for Business & Economics.

The Media Kit is also available for download in PDF format.

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Review Copies and Media Interviews

For a review copy of The Journal of Not Knowing or to schedule an interview with Julie Benezet, please contact the publicist, Gail Kearns: gail@topressandbeyond.com; 805-898-2263.

The Journal of Not Knowing: A Workbook

Author Bios

Julie Benezet Portrait

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Julie Benezet is the founder/owner of Business Growth Consulting, LLC and The Journey of Not Knowing, LLC. She has coached executives from virtually every industry.

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Julie Benezet is the founder of Business Growth Consulting, LLC and The Journey of Not Knowing, LLC where she has coached executives from virtually every industry. She speaks frequently about leadership and shares her insights on her blog. Julie holds a master’s of psychology and law degrees from McGill University and a B.A. in psychology and anthropology from Cornell University.

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Pursuing dreams has molded Julie Benezet’s life. A self-described hard-wired entrepreneur, she spent 25 years in law and business navigating the new to realize the dreams of others as well as her own. She currently works as an executive coach, author and leader of The Journey of Not Knowing leadership program.

She earned her greatest stripes navigating the new when she spent four years as Amazon’s first real estate executive. Julie led the “Challenges of Leadership” program for executives at the Harvard Graduate School of Design for ten years, speaks on the challenge of leading and succeeding of building in the twenty-first century, and has appeared in numerous publications including The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, The Zweig Letter, TechRepublic.com and TrainingIndustry.com.

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One constant in Julie Benezet’s life has been the pursuit of adventure. It’s not that she is never afraid. She just can’t resist looking at things from another angle. As a child growing up in Colorado, she was a “nature girl” who spent countless hours tracking down unusual butterflies, building tree houses (then jumping off them), and constructing model towns in the backyard sandbox.

Her work and life experiences have made her a firm believer in the potential of the new, and the importance of understanding the underlying human psychology needed to achieve it. Starting early in life when in high school she went to France for a summer to learn to live in another culture, followed by her transfer from the academically robust but small Vassar College to the larger Cornell University, Julie has placed a strong value on learning. She loves to seek new ideas and create organizations that embrace them.

After graduating from Cornell with majors in psychology and anthropology, she moved to Montreal, Canada, with two suitcases and a dream of practicing psychology. That dream took a different direction after a patient grabbed ahold of her waist long hair and wrestled her to the ground. She escaped with her hair intact, but the event influenced her eventual decision to move from psychology to law, a place where she could build businesses, keep her hair, and get paid to argue.

Pursuing dreams has molded Julie’s life. After leaving psychology, she shifted to business life where she raised capital, created strategy and galvanized change. She built Amazon’s first global real estate organization, and for ten years led the “Challenges of Leadership” executive program at the Harvard Graduate School of Design.

More recently, she founded and owns Business Growth Consulting, LLC and The Journey of Not Knowing, LLC where she has coached and counseled executives from virtually every industry on navigating change and the new. She is a sought-after speaker about leadership and navigating change and shares her professional insights in print and online.

Julie loves both to learn and teach. She led the “Challenges of Leadership” program for executives at the Harvard Graduate School of Design for ten years. She has appeared in numerous publications including The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, Tech Republic.com, Training Industry and The Zweig Letter. She holds an LLB (law) and M.Sc. (psychology) from McGill University and a B.A. from Cornell University.

When she is not working, she loves to read mysteries, explore new wineries, and wander through compelling physical environments.

Female Explorer

Books

The Journal of Not Knowing:
Charting Your Own Course

We all have dreams, big and small, but how do we overcome our fears to make them happen? They could fail. People might laugh, resist, or . . . love them. We won’t know until we try. How do we summon the courage to try new ideas to make things better, for ourselves and for others? Whether we are leading an organization or looking to make a personal change, The Journal of Not Knowing will guide its readers through a mission of self-discovery.

The journal offers a companion workbook to The Journey of Not Knowing: How 21st Century Leaders Can Chart a Course Where There Is None. To be used in conjunction with the Journey book or by itself, the workbook contains provocative questions, exercises, and other tools to explore the Journey principles of navigating the unknown, dealing with risk, and the Core Four principles.

The Journal of Not Knowing Workbook Cover

Based on many years of work with The Journey of Not Knowing program participants, The Journal of Not Knowing will allow you to work with others or on your own to answer key questions that stand between you and your dreams for making things better.

You can explore and create a plan to address:

  • Your relationship with the unknown.
  • How you handle not knowing whether your ideas will turn out, including people’s reactions to them (and you).
  • How discomfort with uncertainty shows up in your life and gets in the way of you trying new ideas and behaviors.
  • How you can get comfortable with the discomfort of the risk that comes with the unknown.
  • How you can avoid sabotaging yourself with defensive behaviors.
  • What purpose will give you fuel to navigate the discomfort of the unknown you might encounter on the way to pursuing your dreams.

The Journal of Not Knowing:
How 21st Century Leaders Can Chart a Course Where There Is None

The Journey of Not Knowing book cover

The Journey of Not Knowing offers a fast paced, entertaining read that goes to the heart of a critical state in today’s business climate and society overall: the constantly changing twenty-first century with uncharted waters ahead. This book advances a new approach to leading change that will inspire leaders of any size organization, and anyone else wishing to pursue new possibilities, to see the discomfort of the unknown as an adventure rather than an obstacle to building a better future. The book received a 2017 Benjamin Franklin Gold Medal and the 2016 Foreword INDIES Book of the Year Silver Medal for Business & Economics.

Combining storytelling, business experience, and human psychology, the book follows an eight-member leadership team of a fictional company through one business day. At the end of that day, they have to explain to a critical new client why a former client fired them. None of the team members knows why and until asked, had carefully avoided the issue.

The story delves into their defended behaviors as they work first to ignore and then to solve the mystery. The memorable characters in the book are persons with whom readers might cringingly identify. It also might trigger insights into their own ineffective behaviors when faced with the unknown.

For more information and to download the media kit, please visit www.juliebenezet.com/media-kit/.


The Journal of Not Knowing Descriptions

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Everyone has dreams, big and small, but how do they overcome their fears to make them happen? The Journal of Not Knowing offers a companion workbook to The Journey of Not Knowing: How 21st Century Leaders Can Chart a Course Where There Is None. To be used in conjunction with the Journey book or by itself, the workbook guides people on a mission of self-discovery to confront the scariness of change and reach something better for their organizations and personal lives.

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Everyone has dreams, big and small, but how do they overcome their fears to make them happen? The Journal of Not Knowing offers a companion workbook to The Journey of Not Knowing: How 21st Century Leaders Can Chart a Course Where There Is None. To be used in conjunction with the Journey book or by itself, the workbook guides people on a mission of self-discovery to confront the scariness of change and reach something better for their organizations and personal lives.

The journal provides thought provoking questions, exercises and tools to help people tackle:

  • Their relationship with the unknown.
  • How to handle not knowing whether their ideas will pan out, including people’s reactions to those ideas, and them.
  • How discomfort with uncertainty shows up and gets in the way of trying new ideas and behaviors.
  • How to get comfortable with the discomfort of the risk that comes with the unknown.
  • How to avoid sabotaging themselves with defensive behaviors.
  • What purpose will fuel navigation through the unease encountered on the way to pursuing dreams.

278 words

Everyone has dreams, big and small, but how do they overcome their fears to make them happen? They could fail. People might laugh, resist, or . . . love them. You won’t know until you try. How do you summon the courage to try new things to make things better, for yourself and for others? Whether you are leading an organization or looking to make a personal change, The Journal of Not Knowing guides its readers through a mission of self-discovery.

The journal offers a companion workbook to The Journey of Not Knowing: How 21st Century Leaders Can Chart a Course Where There Is None. To be used in conjunction with the Journey book or by itself, the workbook contains provocative questions, exercises, and tools to explore the Journey principles of navigating the unknown, dealing with risk, and the Core Four principles.

Based on many years of experience with The Journey of Not Knowing® program participants, The Journal of Not Knowing allows you to work with others or on your own to answer key questions that stand between you and your dreams for making things better.

The journal provides thought provoking questions, exercises and tools to help people tackle:

  • Their relationship with the unknown.
  • How to handle not knowing whether their ideas will pan out, including people’s reactions to those ideas, and them.
  • How discomfort with uncertainty shows up and gets in the way of trying new ideas and behaviors.
  • How to get comfortable with the discomfort of the risk that comes with the unknown.
  • How to avoid sabotaging themselves with defensive behaviors.
  • What purpose will fuel navigation through the unease encountered on the way to pursuing dreams.
The Journey of Not Knowing book cover

5 Things You Didn’t Know About Me

  1. In my single digit years, I used to jump off the top of my two-story tree house and the roof of the neighbor’s garage, just for the thrill of it . . . until one day I landed on my neck.  I wasn’t injured, but it was a reminder that some adventures are best left alone.
  2. In high school, I became frustrated with my slow progress in French class. I decided the solution was to ask the French teacher if I could swap out attending class with a weekly tutorial with her. Coming from a large family, I was not used to asking for special treatment, but I really wanted to learn my great grandfather’s native tongue. I also found the classroom boring. For whatever reason, the teacher accepted, and we both ended up grateful. We spent many enjoyable hours accelerating my knowledge of French. That led me spending a summer in France before my senior year. That changed a lot of things in my life, broadening my American centric views to a broader and more culturally diverse global perspective.
  3. At age twenty-two, I worked for four months as a therapist in a token economy behavior therapy ward at a long-term psychiatric hospital where on my first day a patient who grabbed ahold of my waist long hair and wrestled me to the floor.  I got out with my hair intact, but the experience influenced my eventual decision to move from psychology to law, where I could keep my hair and get paid to argue.
  4. I have never had a job that existed before I arrived at a company. While that was not a conscious strategy, every job I’ve had evolved out of one or more conversations with someone I met from a company in which we shared mutual enthusiasms and ideas, one of which would eventually become my new job at that company.
  5. Growing up I played a lot of board games, living in a family of avid players. My favorite game? It was Monopoly until my brother demonstrated that by taking more risks (buying a bunch of houses and hotels) he managed to clean out all my hard-earned Monopoly money inside of fifteen minutes.

Talking Points

Seven Ways Top Executives Successfully Navigate the Unknown

  1. Top executives embrace scariness of the unknown as an asset, not a liability.
    Leadership is not for the faint of heart. It requires a willingness to take on the risks that come with uncertain outcomes, to flex as things play out differently from what was anticipated and to rejoice with others when a new idea leads to something better for the organization.
  2. Top executives understand their purpose in an organization is to lead it into the future, not to stay with the known present.
    The job of a leader is not business as usual, but business as it could be. In every aspect of organizational life, whether it is a company’s market position, work culture, talent development or new products, top executives constantly look for opportunities to make life better for their employees, organization and customers. They pay attention to what their stakeholders really want, and then come up with an idea that will meet that desire, however untried that idea is.
  3. Top executives will find a purpose that will drive them through the discomfort of not knowing the outcome of new ideas.
    Traveling on the road to better outcomes can be disconcerting. You never know what might happen on that road to trying out new ideas. Top executives allow themselves to be guided by a sense of purpose that gives them personal meaning and fuel to navigate the challenges of making dreams happen.
  4. Top executives accept failure as an option on the way to success.
    New ideas, by their very nature, are untested. To find out whether they will be successful involves experimentation with new approaches, systems and people. With so many new things, failure of all or part of a new idea is not only possible, but almost inevitable, particularly if the new idea is quite risky. Top executives regard bumps along the road as learning opportunities rather than reasons to abandon the quest.
  5. Top executives recognize human messiness is a fact of life and learn to work with it through discovery rather than avoidance.
    Every human comes with his or her own set of requirements. There is no manual that guides, much less predicts what each person will do in any situation. We are all unique. That is the beauty of humankind. It is also a curse, as to connect with others to surface their needs, we must commit to understanding them on their own terms.
  6. Top executives regard self-knowledge as critical and accept that it can be hard to attain.
    To connect with new ideas and the people who will help make them happen, we need to have an open channel, uncluttered by our fears and prejudices. That openness imposes on us the need to explore who we are and how we got here. Top executives learn to separate what was relevant to the past from what is relevant to the future to move the organization forward.
  7. They understand they will never know everything there is to know, but know when to move forward.
    As much as we believe we are familiar with the relevant facts and the personal agendas of others, we can never know everything there is to know. The world of business changes every second of every day and with it, the facts change. What we can know about other humans also changes. Even highly self-aware people may not know something about themselves that could cause them to resist an idea, or choose not to disclose their resistance. Nevertheless, to move an organization forward, top executives have to decide when they know enough to manage the risks that come with making the call.

Reviews of The Journey of Not Knowing

The Journey of Not Knowing beautifully breaks the business book mold and should be required reading for leaders…

[It] uses a cleverly constructed parable to demonstrate how to navigate business uncertainty. In modern business, one of the most significant challenges leaders face is moving an organization forward even when the answers to critical questions may be unknown. Coping with “not knowing” is the theme of Julie Benezet’s expertly written book.”

— Foreword Clarion Reviews

It’s more important than ever for managers to know themselves…in a world of shifting expectations and constantly looming unknowns…

“Benezet offers a management handbook geared toward the unconventional in the modern business world . . . [She] makes crystalline sense; for example, she writes relatively early on that it’s more important than ever for managers to know themselves—to know . . .”who you are and for what you stand” in a world of shifting expectations and constantly looming unknowns. This idea is related to the “core drivers” of her book, concentrated in the “Core Four” components . . . that deal with “the relationship between leadership and the unknown.” . . . In her explorations of these components, Benezet is at her most authoritative. A largely involving story-oriented breakdown of how to chart a steady managerial course in uncharted territory.”

— Kirkus Reviews

This book contains many jewels on how one deals with making decisions…

“. . .This book contains many jewels on how one deals with making decisions based on uncertain information. Despite the ubiquitous reliance on data collection and analysis, many business decisions are still based on a form of intuition. In most cases, the most important thing is to have the courage to act on those beliefs rather than playing it safe and eventually sorry.”

— Charles Ashbacher, Charles Ashbacher Reviews, Top 50 Amazon Reviewer

Ms. Benezet’s background in psychology, anthropology, the law, and her business experience coalesce into a single, multi-dimensional book…

“Ms. Benezet’s background in psychology, anthropology, the law, and her business experience coalesce into a single, multi-dimensional book that also shows off her gift of storytelling. . . (T)he description of the Journey of Not Knowing model . . . was a remarkable compendium of basic truths about working within complex organizations . . .”

— Ken Majer, Midwest Book Review

Benezet shows very simply how we become trapped by our hooks…

“Benezet shows very simply how we become trapped by our hooks into endless dreary cycles of limitation, and how we can liberate ourselves into the vast opportunities that await when we risk stepping beyond the known.”

— Susan Cannon, PhD, co-author of The Way of the Mysterial Woman: Upgrading How You Live, Love, and Lead

A fun read that takes lessons from Amazon’s early days…

“A fun read that takes lessons from Amazon’s early days and uses a fictional business story to teach us how to be better leaders and teammates. Benezet does a wonderful job in focusing us on the unknowns literally right in front of us – our teams and ourselves. A page-turner that doesn’t rely on murder or explosions, at least not literally!”

— Asuka Nakahara, Associate Director of the Zell/Lurie Real Estate Center at Wharton

Benezet captures the spirit of a real leader…

“Benezet captures the spirit of a real leader . . . one who has the courage to take on the unknown with a balance of analytical brilliance and drive for making things better when there is no roadmap.”

— Gail Ayers, PhD, CEO CREW Network

The Journey of Not Knowing provides a great teaching tool…

“Through the vehicle of a well-crafted and entertaining story, The Journey of Not Knowing provides a great teaching tool for both established and emerging leaders. The book skillfully raises awareness of how defensive behaviors against the unknown can get in the way of their success as leaders, and how they might overcome them to achieve strategic results. The lessons are reinforced by a story from the author’s experiences as an early Amazon executive and a primer of the Journey principles that follows the story. I highly recommend this great read.”

— Patricia Langer, EVP, Human Resources at NBC Universal, Inc.

Benezet intimately describes the evolution of a leadership team…

“The Journey of Not Knowing combines the many years of business world experience of its author with astute observation of human behavior.  Using a story format to describe familiar and widespread defensive organizational behaviors, Benezet intimately describes the evolution of a leadership team from resistance to engagement in order to solve a critical business problem. The Journey model included at the back of the book explains how they got there. The book is fresh, fun and inspiring.”

— Cindy Aden, Librarian, Former Amazonian and current Washington State Librarian


The Journal of Not Knowing

By Julie Benezet

FACT SHEET

Category: Business & Economics/Leadership
BISAC Code BUS046000
Title: The Journal of Not Knowing
Subtitle: Charting Your Own Course
Author: Julie Benezet
Formats: Print
Pages:128
Price: $19.95 (print)
ISBN: 978-0-9978139-2-0 (print)

Publisher Contact
Morton Hill Press
PO Box 614
Ashland, OR 97520
info@juliebenezet.com
www.juliebenezet.com
LinkedIn: https://linkedIn/juliebenezet 
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/thejourneyofnotknowing/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/JourneyofNK 
Skype ID: juliebenezet
206-295-5747

Publicity Contact
Gail M. Kearns
805-898-2263
gail@topressandbeyond.com