We all want to be successful at whatever we set out to do. We’re also human, and humans make mistakes. You may be happy to know, those very mistakes usually carry with them the most valuable lessons. You could even say the worst decisions make the best stories.
Instead of cowering away from struggles and failures, use those situations to your advantage. Your personal struggles and the lessons learned are your very own treasure trove for building stories.
STORIES OF VULNERABILITY DEMONSTRATE COURAGE
The successful connectors and leaders I’ve observed don’t shy away from sharing their failures. Sharing your vulnerability in stories demonstrates courage.
Being a real leader, one who connects with others and knows the power of storytelling, means telling your story against the backdrop of real obstacles.
Show your team how you’ve overcome the challenges or even how you didn’t. That’s what works to connect, inspire, and get people into action.
Remember, no one likes a perfect hero. We can’t relate to perfection no matter how much we try to attain it. However, we can relate to someone who has struggled, especially if the struggle is similar to what we are experiencing right now.
THE MOST POWERFUL STORIES ARE SIMPLE AND TRUE
How do you sift through your years of experience and find your stories? It’s actually easier than you may think. You don’t need to be a professional storyteller to have an impact. Just keep it simple and sincere.
When a story is about you or has happened to you, it is more believable. Your audience will know when you are telling tales instead of sharing an actual event. It’s in your body language, your tone of voice, and the emotion in your delivery. Real connection requires real stories about you.
Remember, the message begins with you. The intent of storytelling is for you to connect with your audience. In business, we first must connect, then build trust, then develop the relationship, and then finally there is an opportunity to influence.
THE RIGHT INFORMATION AT THE RIGHT TIME
I read somewhere that people don’t want more information. We are all overwhelmed with information. I suppose that could be true for some, though I’m always looking to learn new things. Perhaps what we want is the right information at the right time. When building business relationships, we need information that will help us build trust.
If you and I met and you wanted to do business with me, I wouldn’t move forward until I trusted you. I want to know who you are and why I should listen to you. Then, once there is trust I’ll listen. It’s your opportunity to inspire me into action.
Want to learn more about how storytelling helps you succeed? Check out Everyday Storytelling for Success.