Stories make life interesting and give people a way to connect. People crave them, which creates a big opportunity for you and your leadership.
Working recently with a CEO of a global corporate business, our brief was to help her get ready for a very important business-defining public speaking engagement.
Amanda was to be the keynote speaker at a global industry conference with over a thousand delegates. For Amanda, this was a big deal. Amanda was a good speaker. She had to be; she was a CEO.
She had presented in business all her life…
But something was missing for her. This wasn’t about presenting. This wasn’t about just sharing data. This was about her and who she was and what she represented. She needed to talk to the conference delegates, not present.
Amanda attended our CHOICES retreat, where she completed the River of Life exercise.
We got Amanda to stand up and present what she normally would. She shared some data and core messages. Factual. Very useful. But not really her.
We asked her to explore the possibility that his stories could bring the data to life. She could be inspiring. She noticed he had some deep and meaningful stories she could use as well as light, funny anecdotal stories which could bring the data to life.
We asked her to take three moments in her life and to talk to me about them, relating them to at least one or two of the core messages within the data. Amanda got up in front of other execs she had never met before and started talking about her stories.
Almost instantaneously, she had one of those aha moments…
Her stories gave her the freedom to relive and connect with who she was whilst speaking (not who she was from his past). She connected the stories to the messages. She made the stories relevant, bringing the data to life.
She let go of her attachment to what she believed she should be like and should sound like. This helped her to relive the stories using appropriate, relevant emotion to connect her core messages to her stories.
We spent a whole day exploring storytelling skills, mastering the craft of truthful story-sharing.
The reaction Amanda got from the other execs on the programme was just what she needed. Amanda received a more significant degree of approval when the thousand-strong conference room stood to their feet and applauded her and her keynote.
Your truth as a leader lies within you. In your story…
Allow yourself the freedom to mine it and trust you will let it out relevantly and appropriately. Let it happen.
You are a brand. You too have a story, most likely connected to the business. You just need to understand how to find it, speak it and live it. Just like famous brands do.
Your story must resonate with people at a level that goes way beyond what’s tangible — the functionality, features, and benefits of your products or services — to create a deep, emotional connection with your audience.
We will help you find, speak and live your story.