The stories you really need to know are not necessarily the stories you want to hear, are they? Because the stories you really need to know make you feel uncomfortable.
After all, the stories you prefer to hear validate and justify the way you currently serve your existing client base. Truth be told, you are safe and comfortable doing things the same way you always have. In fact, you develop a wash-rinse-repeat formula that works really well.
Consequently, any of those stories you really need to know are disruptive to this predictable and comfortable flow.
Except, there is an entire set of target clients who do not choose to do business with you. It just could be that the stories they continuously want to hear are, in fact, stories about what they really need to know. To stay competitive and innovative in today’s Industry40 manufacturing and business environments. Consequently, telling their stories the same way you tell all of your clients’ stories reinforces their status quo. You see, your non-clients left that wash-rinse-repeat recipe behind, quite a while ago.
Consider that the stories you really need to know bridge the gaps between “the way it used to be” and “the way it needs to be”: Today, Tomorrow and in the Future.
Add up the number of times you attend workshops or webinars, listening for stories that make you comfortable. How do you react when “what you really need to know” stories are presented?
Do you become defensive, instead of being open-minded to new concepts? Then, do you take things personally, instead of weighing how these new concepts may appeal to those target clients who currently do not do business with you? Or, do you put your hands over your ears, and tell yourself: “Well, that is not the way I learned to do things!”
How large is the gap between continuing to do things the same way you learned to do them? And how you need to be doing them, to keep pace with the velocity of changing business and manufacturing environments?
What is the cost of remaining comfortable to the future of your business?
Perhaps it’s time to get uncomfortable. Listen to the stories you really need to know.
Because the pace and cadence of business environments have changed considerably, since you learned how to do whatever it is that you do. We all are in the same place, as you are. Except that some of us embrace the discomfort of change and disruption and others do not.
Your current clients experience continuous challenges to the way they always have done things. And they need your help to bridge the gaps between Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow and the Future.
Will you continue tell their stories the same way you always have? Alternatively, will you sit down with your clients and listen for those stories you really need to know. The stories you really need to be telling. So everyone gets to where they need to go. Together.
Take these next steps.
- Planning your next team, corporate or association meeting? Engage me to present one of my Storytelling for STEM Professionals and Left Brain Thinkers speaking programs, workshops or moderated facilitation services. Contact me here.
- Download my new checklist and worksheet: Six Professional Development Targets to Hit each Month.
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Babette Ten Haken’s One Millimeter Mindset® Storytelling Speaking Programs, Workshops and Facilitation Services leverage storytelling for STEM professionals and left brain thinkers to catalyze employee and customer success and retention. She motivates individuals and teams to combine courage, curiosity and critical thinking skills to co-create compelling stories which inspire trust in one another. Especially in digitally transforming industries with STEM and left-brain stakeholders.
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 hacks, Do YOU Mean Business? is available on Amazon.com. Babette’s speaker profile is on the espeakers platform. Contact Babette here.
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