March Pick


Celebrating female authors who inspire women to be their best selves with championing belonging, generosity, and strength. 

Each month, Fran picks a favorite must read. From the here-and-now to worlds far away, we will experience connection, beauty and life through the eyes of real women. We invite you to make a cup of tea and gift yourself a moment to join us on this journey! 


Susan McPherson is a master connector. It’s her superpower, and, as she says, comes as naturally to her as breathing. “I’ve been called the Serial Connector, a human Customer Relationship Management (CRM) app – and I’ve spent the last 30 years of my career building relationships that are deep and expansive, “Susan writes in the introduction to her new book, The Lost Art of Connecting: The Gather, Ask, Do Method for Building Meaningful Business Relationships. Relationships are the cornerstone of one’s career success – I know the’ve been invaluable to mine. We all need people in our corner, whether they’re cheerleaders, motivators, listeners, sages, mentors, or connectors.

When my book The Myth of the Nice Girl launched, Susan generously invited around 20 friends and colleagues to her rooftop to celebrate. The connections I made at that gathering resulted in an important speaking engagement and an invitation to be a guest on a TV show. She brings people together so naturally and authentically.

And now, in her book, Susan shares her infinite wisdom and the tools you need so you, too, can be a master connector.

What sticks with me:

  • Connecting comes down to one simple question: How can I help? This question shifts the conversation focus on supporting others, and that’s what makes relationships feel meaningful.
  • Remembering details or events about someone’s lives makes them feel seen, safe, and secure, which has a powerful effect. For example, to make Zoom (and other meeting platforms) more personal, start by following up on something someone said in the last call. For instance: “How did that client pitch go, Susan?”
  • Get our of the mindset that you need to be constantly reaching our to new people. Your existing network is your biggest asset – use it. Someone who is already in your immediate network might be able to introduce you to the correct person.
  • If you need to give someone feedback, do so in a way that strengthens the relationship. The recipient should feel as though they are receiving a pep talk or some inside scoop that will help them grow from a friend.

Follow @fransbookshelf for book recommendations, giveaways and reading inspiration.


Susan McPherson is a serial connector, angel investor, and corporate responsibility expert. She is the founder and CEO of McPherson Strategies, a communications consultancy focused on the intersection of brands and social impact, providing storytelling, partnership creation and visibility to corporations, NGOs and social enterprises. She is the author of The Lost Art of Connecting: The Gather, Ask, Do Method for Building Meaningful Relationships. Susan has 25+ years of experience in marketing, public relations, and sustainability communications, speaking regularly at industry events including Inspirefest/Dublin, BSR, Center for Corporate Citizenship’s Annual Summit, DLD and Techonomy, and contributing to the Harvard Business Review, Fast Company, and Forbes. She has appeared on NPR, CNN, USA Today, The New Yorker, New York Magazine and the Los Angeles Times.


Fran Hauser is a bestselling author, startup investor and champion of women. For more of her book recommendations, follow her @fransbookshelf on Instagram.