Monday, May 14, 2007

Business Storytelling: Are You Ready for Five Minutes of Fame?

Here is my latest challenge for you.

Let's pretend that the Woman who runs the World's Largest Afternoon Talk (WLATS) show wants to talk about your business on Her show. You Know Who I mean. She is going to randomly pick an employee from your organization to speak.

Let's pretend that YOU have been chosen to represent your company on Her WLATS show. You will have only 5-10 minutes on the show to share your experience and to convince people that they should be calling your company for their needs. Like it or not, 10 minutes on that show can translate into bazillions of contacts. So, you have 5-10 minutes to grab the attention of the audience.

What would you say? If you said you'd talk about your financial security, how nice your buildings are and your 24 hour service, then you lose. All of your competitors say they have those, even if they don't.

You've got 5-10 minutes. What story, the one that touches the heart and imagination of the audience, will you tell? Stop now and choose one. If you have taken my training work, you have your Intentionality Journal to help you. My training courses give you tools that work.

Side note for some of you: This is *not* an exercise in the "elevator speech" process. "Elevator speeches" are dead. Relationships are alive. Stories build relationships.

1.Choose your story.

2.Choose your point.

3. Choose where the story will start.

4. Choose the other episodes that help you get your point across.

5. Choose the ending. Maybe you go back to the opening sentence to close?

6. Find someone and tell them your story. Open your mouth and tell the story. The only way to learn is to do it.

This exercise is for everyone in your company. It is for the Executive Team. It is for the new cashier who was just hired this week.

"Hah Ha, Very funny. WLATS is going to randomly pick an employee? Oh, that will never happen." you say. Do you want to bet? It is already happening every day. Potential customers, guests and potential employees randomly meet your staff every day. Are all of your current staff ready to tell a story or two?

Executive People: Will you model your 5-10 minute talk-show story for the rest of your company within the next seven days?

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