Do you have storytelling confidence? You know, telling stories consistently, time after time. And, telling the stories in which you are professionally invested.
When you take those actions, you move away from describing someone else’s stories, as a third-party narrative. Think about it.
Which type of stories do you currently tell to potential clients and strategic partners? Pre-composed, perfectly-written stories that shapeshift, depending on your desired business outcome? Or, do you tell stories in which you believe? There’s a big difference. Let’s explore together.
Storytelling confidence starts with re-discovering the stories living within your own professional arsenal.
Throughout the professional sales part of my career, I discovered that clients trusted my own professional stories. In fact, my clients trusted my own stories far more than they trusted the stories my organization told on their website or via promotional materials.
That initial realization got me thinking.
Why don’t I tell my own stories? Because, truthfully, I was not confident and invested in the latest and greatest, one-story-size-fits-all stories that every other salesperson in my organization’s sales force told their own clients. For starters, these stories sounded scripted and unnatural to me. And if they sound scripted to me, how are they going to sound refreshing and new to clients? Why would I expect a generic-sounding story to justify my client’s investment in whatever product or solution I sell?
Then, that next realization got me thinking even more.
On the other hand, I started doing my own industry-related research. Next, I compared my research to the corporate stories I was asked to tell: did story make sense with industry trends? Then, I discovered examples of these trends supported by (or not) my own client-based stories. When I finally started telling my own stories, I gained professional credibility in the eyes of my clients. Credibility and success. So did my clients.
Because we became co-invested in the success that these stories led us to Together: Today, Tomorrow and in the Future.
Do you have storytelling confidence? Or, do the stories you tell shapeshift all over the place?
What are your own stories you have yet to tell? Stories you consistently tell with confidence: the same way, every time? Instead of shape-shifting the story based on what you think your clients “want” to hear? Consider this: your clients just may crave more realism in your less-than-perfect stories.
Does this blog post move you one millimeter beyond remaining comfortable telling stories your clients are not invested in hearing? Good! Then click on this link. Let’s get you started telling the stories you need to tell. Because these are the stories your clients need to hear. To get you to where you need to go. Together.
Babette Ten Haken’s Story:
I would love to bring one of my One Millimeter Mindset® Storytelling programs to serve your organization’s and associations strategy. Start leveraging purpose-driven value differentiation through storytelling, for your own professional success and to lead and retain more engaged and successful employees and clients. Find out more about my own professional story here. I am a member of SME, ASQ, SHRM and the National Speakers Association. My playbook of 16 communication tools, Do YOU Mean Business? is available on Amazon.com. My speaker profile is on the espeakers platform. Contact me here, if you prefer!
Image source: iStock/Getty images