Some visitors to the downtown Minneapolis Hilton should leave feeling happier than when they arrived March 24 — for reasons unrelated to duplicity.
Dr. Verna will be there talking about "Finding the Happy Factor at Work." An internationally known human potential expert and CEO of The Power of People Consulting Group, Verna Cornelia Price founded the annual "change conference" six years ago.
"I have had too many people come to me for coaching who are so unhappy in their jobs. There's something going on in the workplace," she said. "The bottom line is it is hurting people. People are getting sicker by the minute. There's absenteeism in the workplace. And these are people who are smart, used to be energetic and fun. The whole day is about how you get re-energized and how to find that place of happiness for yourself in your workplace."
The author of three books, including, "The Power of People: Four Kinds of People Who Can Change Your Life," Dr. Verna is also founder of three programs designed to help teens and adults use their personal power. She is expanding her repertoire, working with the St. Paul Police Department to improve perceptions between youth and police. A motivational speaker, Dr. Verna has been featured in magazines from Ebony, which named her an Everyday Hero in 2013, to Minnesota Business.
Armed with a beautiful smile and a winning style, Dr. Verna is relentlessly upbeat, but not in that annoying way, and claims she never gets sad: "I don't. I don't. I have many reasons for that, but that's a whole other conversation, off camera."
I really just wanted to get Dr. Verna on startribune.com/video talking about the E! TV "Fashion Police" writer who wrote apology-inducing wisecracks for Giuliana Rancic to say about Disney star Zendaya's dreadlocks. I got roped into way more, including a speaking engagement, by the persuasive, talkative Dr. Verna, who aims to someday share territory with Dr. Phil and Iyanla Vanzant. "You have to help me," Dr. Verna said. "I don't have the Oprah connection."
Q: The premise of your book "The Power of People" is that personalities fall under one of four types?
A: Yes. First of all, people are powerful, so the whole notion is that you are born with power. You're not just existing, you're walking around loaded with power. You can use your power in one of four ways. You can use your power to be an Adder, a Subtracter, a Multiplier or a Divider. Here's the thing that gets me: Who teaches you that you're powerful? Let's start there. Which mom or dad says, "You are powerful. Go for it. Just make it happen." Not only that, but who teaches you how to use that power, to be an Adder or a Subtracter [or the other two types]?
Q: I'm not seeing a lot of difference between the Adder and Multiplier.
A: Multipliers make your dreams and vision a reality almost instantly. Who would Dr. Phil be without Oprah?
Q: What's the first one of these personality types you noticed in your family of origin?
A: Oh, that's a great question. Adders, and I'm thankful for that because after I got through with Adders, the Subtracters showed up [raucous laughter].
Q: Why is mainstream media having such trouble with the hair of ethnic women?
A: That's a good question. I have twiggles, they are double twisted. I can untwist them anytime I want; I have had natural hair for 15 years. It's so interesting, everywhere where I go. I was just in China not very long ago, and they were so interested in my hair. Fascinated. Now here's the reality. Women of color, as a rule, are beautiful. [Pause.] This is true. We tend to be beautiful, energetic, big smiles, lovely. Some people have a real hard time with that. Now we can talk about the underlying issues that are driving that. Things like the fact that our country is steeped in racism. Things like we have been socialized as a people to be racist. Things like that residue of racism still leaves your average Caucasian person feeling as if they are better than the typical person of color. It's a real issue in our country.
The longer version of this edited interview is online. To reach C.J. try firstname.lastname@example.org and to see her on TV check out the Fox 9 Buzz.