Patty Limerick

#313: The Power of Playing the Fool in Business

#313: The Power of Playing the Fool in Business

We have never lived in a more polarized time. Facts just aren’t going to cut it when you are trying to change someone’s mind. But how do you become a catalyst for change? If you can tap into your inner fool to convey your stories that can challenge the thinking and logic of your audience, break down barriers and cultivate trust – it can truly empower them to take risks and win. 

Today’s guest will show you how. Patty Limerick is the Faculty Director and Chair of the Board of the Center of the American West at the University of Colorado, best-selling author of The Legacy of Conquest, a MacArthur Fellow and the former Official Fool for both Yale and Harvard Universities. 

Patty has dedicated her career to bridging the gap between academics and the general public and to demonstrating the benefits of applying historical perspective to contemporary dilemmas and conflicts. She is an energetic, fun and engaging public speaker on American Western history and is regularly featured on the op-ed pages of local and national newspapers, including serving as a guest columnist for The New York Times in the summer of 2005. She currently writes a monthly column for The Denver Post.

Patty has impressively served as president of several professional organizations, advised documentary and film projects, and done two tours as a Pulitzer Nonfiction jurist, as well as chairing the 2011 Pulitzer jury in History. 

Tune in, as we explore why you should be tapping into your inner fool and how playing this persona can take you to powerful heights in your business storytelling.


Discussed in this episode

  • How to invoke the power of the fool in your business that will challenge the thinking and logic of your audience and encourage them to explore creative solutions that would not have otherwise been considered
  • Why creating chaos and unrest can lead to the promotion of new ideas, foster new experiences and gain new insights
  • The underestimated power of using irony, sarcasm and humor to convey difficult messages to break down boundaries
  • Patty’s fascinating background and how she has utilized the fool archetype her entire life to take her to great heights in her career



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