Elaine Lin Hering
Expert communications coach
Photo credit: Cat Coppenrath
About Elaine Lin Hering
Elaine Lin Hering is a speaker, facilitator, and writer. She works with organizations and individuals to build skills in communication, collaboration, and conflict management. She coaches women and minorities navigating executive leadership in majority white spaces. She is a former Managing Partner at a global leadership development firm and is the author of the book Unlearning Silence: How to Speak Your Mind, Unleash Talent, and Live More Fully (March 2024).
Hering has worked with coal miners at BHP Billiton, micro-finance organizers in East Africa, mental health professionals in China, and senior leadership at the US Department of Commerce. Having worked on six continents and across industries, she is known for her cross cultural fluency and ability to educate across power and difference.
She has taught executive education programs at Harvard, Dartmouth, Tufts, UC Berkeley, and UCLA and served as the Advanced Training Director for the Harvard Mediation Program and as a Lecturer on Law at Harvard Law School. Her clients include American Express, Capital One, Google, IBM, Merck, Nike, Salesforce, Shell, Pixar, the Red Cross, and Workday.
Hering has spoken at conferences ranging from the World Business Dialogue in Germany to the Auschwitz Institute on Peace and Reconciliation to the Global Leadership Summit. In her keynotes, lectures, and workshops, she offers ways to build cultures of voice, demystifying why the advice “just speak up” doesn’t work – and what to do instead. She enlightens and empowers her audience with tangible strategies for leveraging their voices and leading in a way that supports rather than silences their teams. Her works have been published in many publications, including Fast Company, HR Magazine, and San Francisco Chronicle.
Hering previously taught negotiation and mediation at Monash Law School in Australia and was a Senior Consultant for Conflict Management Australasia, helping them expand their practice in the region. Her research interests include unlearning silence, speaking up, and how race, gender, and non-visible identities influence negotiation. She has B.A.s in Political Science and Music from the University of California.
Build a Speak Up Culture
With candor and humor, Elaine Lin Hering explores how learned silence and the ways that you’re unintentionally silencing people undercuts your best intentions. Based on her upcoming book, Unlearning Silence (Penguin 2024), Hering examines the messages you’re really sending with your actions and offers ways to build new patterns of working together. She teaches her audience how to create clear paths for voice, understanding and designing for different wiring, and using their own voices to establish new norms.
Unlearning Silence: How to Find and Use Your Voice
“Just speak up.” Elaine Lin Hering shows how this common advice falls flat if we fail to recognize the silence we’ve learned and the real and perceived costs associated with speaking up. In provoking session, she sheds light on the silence we’ve learned and offer concrete ways to find and use your voice – for the impact you want. She provides strategies for finding your unique voice and a mental model for speaking up.
Making Feedback Work
Elaine Lin Hering takes a hard look at how people react to feedback, and how to turn even off-base, unfair, and poorly-delivered feedback into real learning and growth. She teaches the 3 kinds of “feedback” everyone needs to learn and grow, typical triggers that incline us to dismiss or debate rather than learn from feedback, and actionable tips individuals can integrate into their teams and daily practices to make feedback work better.
Praise for Elaine Lin Hering
Praise for Unlearning Silence
Whether we have been socialized to keep quiet, punished for speaking up, or feel panic at the prospect of voicing our truth, our silence deprives the workplace and the world of our ideas and crucial contributions. Elaine Lin Hering’s amazing book provides the secret recipe for breaking silence once and for all! Everyone should read Unlearning Silence—including a lot of men who mute themselves and look the other way when sexism and bias rear their heads.— W. Brad Johnson, PhD, Professor of Leadership, Ethics, and Law, U. S. Naval Academy and coauthor of Good Guys: How Men Can Be Better Allies for Women in the Workplace
Unlearning Silence is a call to action for anyone who has been underestimated, told they shouldn’t speak out, and confined by stereotypes. Elaine has brilliantly pulled together a much needed roadmap for those looking to use the strength of their voice to build the teams, lives, and companies we need, while bringing out the best from the people they lead.— Eric Toda, Director, Social Marketing at Meta & Managing Director of Meta Prosper
Unlearning Silence is a stunning book that empowers readers to break free from the shackles of silence, unlock their inner voice, and put into practice actionable strategies that build confidence in speaking up.— Thomas Curran, Associate Professor, London School of Economics, chartered psychologist, and author of The Perfection Trap
Unlearning Silence is the book I wish I had when I started my career….This book is going to change the workplace for the better.— Pooja Lakshmin MD, psychiatrist & best-selling author of Real Self-Care
Books by Elaine Lin Hering
Media About Elaine Lin Hering
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