When companies adopt a cupcake storytelling strategy, clients can dismiss the stories you tell as unimportant and insignificant: to them. Lovely little snacks instead of a substantial, relevant and valuable meal: to them.
As business leaders, do you tell only half the story that needs to be told? Because you ignore or dismiss the importance of all of your company’s storytellers?
Storytelling catalyzes both employee experience and customer experience. When clients experience your stories as snacks, instead of anticipating them as a rich meal, will they read, or listen to, the stories you tell, in the first place?
To tell the complete story, be more inclusive, instead of relying on a cupcake storytelling strategy.
Throughout my storytelling workshops , I collaborate with industries experiencing unproductive and unprofitable communication disconnects in response to technology change. I have found that storytelling is a tremendous way to bridge employee experiences across pay grades, job titles, levels of education and generations.
Often, my client organizations involve lots of STEM (Science-Technology-Engineering-Mathematics) professionals and left-brain thinkers. And equally often, their non-STEM colleagues feel excluded, marginalized or intimidated when working with these professionals.
As a result, these companies tell only half of the story that clients and stakeholders really need to hear. Typically, the stories lack the substance, and value, for clients to relate back to their own business success.
Is it time to move from a cupcake storytelling strategy, considered a client snack, to a client-anticipated main meal?
During my workshops and keynotes, my predominantly STEM audiences also include internal colleagues and vendors in marketing and public relations, as well. Because STEM storytelling strategy uncovers some substantial, compelling and convincing stories that clients really need to hear. And, we are in this together, if we permit ourselves to be.
Collaborative, co-created storytelling success becomes a matter of being open not only to what you want to hear, but also what you need to know. Regardless of your professional discipline.
At one point during a recent workshop, a PR professional exclaimed: “Well, that’s not the way I learned to tell stories! Why should I change what has been successful for my business?”
And that is the entire point. Do your stories sound and read like everyone else’s stories? Is what’s good for your own business-building strategy also good for your clients’ continued success: Tomorrow and in the Future?
My response to the PR professional? “The pace and cadence of technology change in our digitally connected, transforming business environments makes constant Change the new norm. I do not think there is one person in the room today – and one workforce among the companies represented – who is doing the same things, quite the same way, that they originally were taught. The use- and business cases, let alone the stories, we told Yesterday are not as convincing to Today’s and Tomorrow’s clients. Consider the power of co-created storytelling, focused on making both employees and customers successful.”
The co-created, client-focused stories a company tells include employees and external stakeholders as critical elements in the stories being told.
Your company can set a banquet table rich in stories. Over time, compelling storytelling becomes part of an equally compelling human capital strategy, touching all aspects of your business. Create more convincing, compelling, co-created stories by taking greater ownership of the stories your company tells.
Learn how to leverage a storytelling culture in your company by contacting me here.
Babette Ten Haken’s One Millimeter Mindset® Storytelling for STEM Professionals and Left Brain Thinkers speaking programs leverage purpose-driven value differentiation through storytelling, to create and retain successful employees and clients. Find out more about Babette’s professional story here. Babette is a member of SME, ASQ, SHRM and the National Speakers Association. Her playbook of communication tools, Do YOU Mean Business? is available on Amazon.com. Babette’s speaker profile is on the espeakers platform. Contact Babette here.
Image source: Adobe Stock
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