The Strategist

How to craft a perfect story for your business


05/29/2020 - 08:05



Stories involve and inspire us, they make us move. How to tell stories that are designed to maintain good relations in a team, inspire and energize?



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Let's start with the basics. As you know, any attractive story consists of several parts, each of which needs attention.

Start

The start of history is part of the narrative that leaders often omit completely or attach little importance to it. As a result, the stories become confused and uninteresting. However, the start provides an opportunity to understand the background of events. If everything is done correctly, it also attracts the attention of the audience, convinces that your story is related to it, and generates interest in listening to the rest of the parts.

Pay attention to four important components of the start:

Where and when? Location and time of action are fundamental. Upon learning where and when the event occurred, listeners can determine if it is the truth or fiction.

Who is the main character? Even the most inexperienced storytellers usually include a character in their stories. The most important criterion: the hero of your story should be easy to identify. This is necessary so that someone from the audience could see themselves in the main character and be able to achieve the same result: “Hey, it could be me!”

What does the character want? What is he trying to achieve? What is his passion or purpose? Save the world? Outperform competitors? Win in sales? Or does he just not want to be fired?

Are there any obstacles or enemies in your story? This may be the boss who tricked you with the promotion. The role of the villain can be played by a company or another department with which you compete in terms of indicators. It can be an inanimate object, for example, a mountain on which the hero is trying to climb, or a photocopier that takes revenge on him. It can also be a situation that interferes with the hero. Or the routine of writing a monthly report.

Act

This is the part in which you talk about what happened to your main character. Most important: in this part, the hero fights the villain. The ups and downs in the character's path keep listeners in suspense.

Unlike Hollywood scenarios, a corporate story does not need to go too deep into the descriptions. Of course, it’s good that you have the catalyst, the first turning point, the climax, as well as the final confrontation, but this is not necessary. More importantly for a leader, lessons can be learned from this.

Result

The result is the final leg of the story. In addition to the story of how it all ends, you must explain the lesson to your listeners.

There are different opinions about when the moral of the story should be stated. Some argue that if the story is told well, moral is obvious and there is no need to explicitly emphasize it. In addition, giving your listeners the opportunity to understand and discuss the main idea on their own, you allow them to draw their own conclusions. People love it.

On the other hand, there is a danger that morality may be lost in repeated stories if the narrator himself does not indicate it. Thus, the story of failures without explicit morality can be perceived as an elementary complaint without any lessons. However, a great story will not be spoiled in any case. Decide for yourself.

Based on "Lead with a Story: A Guide to Crafting Business Narratives That Captivate, Convince, and Inspire" by Paul Smith
 




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