She helps you find your plan ‘be’

She helps you find your plan ‘be’

Libby Spears is a woman on the move, now that she knows what she wants to “be” when she grows up. The Lantana mother of two is a communication specialist, focusing on helping people get from a point of change to the next chapter of their lives.

“There’s a fundamental question that we all need to ask of ourselves before we start … ‘What do you want to be?’ From there you can make plans.”

Spears taught communication studies and did graduate work at UNT, then went on to teach at TCU.

“It was at that time that this business I have now started getting a lot more momentum,” she said. “I love what I do. I get to educate no matter what stage I’m on or what room I’m in.”

Although Spears speaks locally from time-to-time, she normally works with state-level chambers of commerce and corporate leadership training. Right now, she’s working with a Canadian engineering/architecture/science firm, facilitating a nine-month long program with its U.S. locations.

Her topics are varied, but include emotional intelligence, communication, management, public speaking and storytelling – topics that inform the topics that are important to leaders who want to be successful.

Spears’ keynote talk, “What’s Your Plan Be?” also has a book and program connected to it. She often speaks on this and other topics at social events. Another of her topics is about how different generations relate to each other in the workplace.

“There’s just a big difference between how young professionals think about the workplace and how Gen Xers and Baby Boomers do,”
she said.

In fact, in the past 2-3 years, this has been Spears’ most popular workplace talk.

Additionally, Spears’ business, Bravo Communications & Consulting, also hosts fundraisers and offers scholarships. One of her biggest initiatives is a Girls Night Out fundraiser held just this past month.

“This is how I want to start my year,” Spears said. “I want to give before I receive. The idea behind it is I love the idea of a fun party that’s raising money to do something
that’s important.”

Each table at the event, held in Lewisville this past year, sells at a price.  About 250 women attend, including some teachers. Spears reaches out to people in the community who care about a particular school, then enlists them to help buy a table for 10 teachers from that school or district.

For the past five years, this fundraiser has benefited girls in Denton ISD schools through the Denton Public Schools Foundation. This year she is also doing the same scholarship with Lewisville ISD and is also starting to awarding scholarships to boys.

Spears has daughters who are a freshman and a junior at Guyer High School.

“As a business owner I want to provide the opportunity for others …,” she said. “I live in this community, this community is important to me. I’m raising a family here. This is just that thing that I do to say this is what I care about the most.”

Bravo’s leadership committee is composed of women who have kids who are in Denton schools. Many have been friends since their kids were in kindergarten.

One of them has directly seen Spears’ approach change her life’s direction.

“I’ve done this for 10 years. Every time it happens I still am amazed by how many people come to me and say, ‘I don’t know what I want to be when I grow up.’ Then I’ll have them also say, ‘I guess it doesn’t really matter because it’s too late. I just need to stay miserable in this job that I have.’

“There has to be a better way to have this conversation and to address these challenges and have a system in place where you can really address what you want to do.”

Sometimes that means doing small things. Sometimes the steps taken are more life changing

A friend on Spears’ committee held a degree in marketing, used it for a few years and decided to be a stay- at-home mom.

“Her kids got older – she’ll be 50 in two years – and she kept saying to me, ‘I’m unhappy and I don’t know where to begin.’

“Finally one day she said it out loud. ‘I want to be a nurse. That’s what I’ve always wanted to do.’”

Spears helped her explore different options to make that happen and now she’s two classes away from filing nursing school applications.

“She had to get over that internal dialogue that was telling her, ‘You’re too old. It’s too late. You can’t do this thing.’ [Now] she’s so happy,” Spears said. “That’s the kind of thing that I try to help people achieve.”

“It’s all a matter of perspective. When things go wrong like the economy so many people panic. I think when you come from a place of that’s not enough, that absolutely changes the opportunities that come your way.”

Tags assigned to this article:
communicationLibby Spears

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