Denter of the Week: Ellen Petry Leanse

Each week from now through December, we’ll pose several short questions to a member of the Dent family and share their answers with you. This week’s featured Denter is Ellen Petry Leanse, a Strategist, Advisor, & Coach at Work in Progress Consulting. She tweets under the handle @chep2m

Say it in a sentence: Whether you’ve met your biggest goal or it’s still ahead of you, how would you like to be known for having dented the universe?
I want to leave behind some sort of epic story about Silicon Valley that helps the world understand, and learn from, all of the choices and innovations we’ve made here – and gain new understanding of the gains and tradeoffs we’ve made as we’ve changed this Valley in the last fifty years.

What would I know about you after we’d worked together for a year?
That I value the process as much as the outcome. That I value accountability and impact as greatly as I do creativity.  That I genuinely care about the work I do and the people I do it with. And that I’m more likely to have a bad hair day than a bad mood day.

What fault in others do you have the most patience for?

If not yourself, who would you be?
Jane Goodall.

Who else is doing interesting, universe-denting work right now?
We all are. Every action creates a dent, and those dents affect everything else that happens as life moves forward.

Question from last week’s Denter, Alanna Gombert: What one thing would you like to do more of that you sacrifice for your day to day? And will you now make a plan to try to do it?
“Writing” is my answer. In the last year I’ve worked hard on changes that integrate a bit more research and writing time into my ongoing work weeks and months. For me, writing is an “all in” process; little by little I’m moving in the direction that will free me to plunge more deeply into it. So plan is already tiptoeing into action….

What would you like to ask the next Denter of the Week?
What early experience or influence most shaped the course you’ve taken with your life?

An online pioneer and respected business leader, Ellen has worked in Silicon Valley since 1981, driving innovation and growth for Apple, NeXT, Google, and early-stage mobile, social, and B2C technology companies. She spoke at Dent the Future in 2014.

Dent the Future is a conference series that tackles the art and discipline of visionary leadership. The next Dent The Future conference is coming up March 22-25, 2015. Register here.