Creating A Business Story Can Improve Company VisionCreating A Business Story Can Improve Company Vision

If you own a growing online business with multiple employees do your staff members know your story? Do they understand the importance of your story to the success of the company? Have you given them a reason to care?

"Story?" I hear the collective question raised from readers. "What kind of story?"

Most businesses are very good at developing statistical data to pass along to staff members and investors. Have you observed what happens to this data? It is generally thumbed through and then set aside for 'later reading'. The time for reading that material rarely ever happens and generally receives a mental, "Blah, blah, blah" response.

Maybe we have forgotten in our grownup world the joy we find in stories. I bet you had a favorite book as a child and I bet that story was revisited over and over again. You probably are remembering that story right now.

This is the reason for a business story. You likely already have a "once upon a time..." story. This is a historical review of your business and most of your employees understand the basics of your company history.

Perhaps a better question might be whether your company has a story for the future. Sure, this story will be subject to change and it will likely involve the voices of multiple storytellers to construct, but this will be the story that helps your employees understand where you're going.

The story features no bullet points and no five-step plan to ultimate business success. The story involves people and dreams and invites everyone to join in the vision - become part of the story.

When you talk about the "once upon a time..." story you are likely talking about YOUR story. The future story is not yours alone. New personalities will fit into the story and work to complete a larger picture of where the story will go.

Like a stage play your employees will have to identify their role and play their part. They will need to take absolute ownership in the story.

Your staff will respond much better to a story than they will to cold hard data. The percentages do not allow them to respond in typical human fashion, but if there is a proverbial dragon to be slain or a villain to capture they will respond much better.

Perhaps the idea sounds foolish, but the whole notion of business storytelling is to tap into the emotions of the employees. If your staff can connect with the emotions of the storytelling they can connect with the vision of the company to a greater degree.

If you are not a natural born storyteller you should consider visiting with other key staff members to develop the story or ask a writer or business development service to help you craft the first draft of your story.

One this is complete you should invite your staff together and share the story. Some may find the exercise a little strange. Some may see themselves in the story, but in the end they should all be able to understand and be inspired by the word pictures developed within a business story.
by Scott Lindsay
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