Last night I watched a movie called Beasts of the Southern Wild. It was a beautiful movie released in 2012 that wove an unforgettable, magical story. I cried my eyes out and consequently look like crap today, but it was worth it.
If you haven’t seen the movie, I encourage you to do so. Just have cucumber slices and tissues ready. Below is the trailer:
Influencing with Story
Jimmy Neil Smith says:
We’re all storytellers. We all live in a network of stories. There isn’t a stronger connection between people than storytelling.
I don’t personally know Jimmy, but I appreciate his words. The power of story lies in letting people draw their own conclusions based upon what you’ve shared.
A bank CEO I had the honor of consulting with for eleven years, once got in front of a group of bankers who were going to have to endure my sales training for the next year. I had asked him to talk about change, providing him with incredibly predictable bullet points.
Instead, he got up in front of that room and said, Let me tell you a story.
He proceed to patiently tell a story about how when he was a teenager his dad got a new job in another area, and he had to leave his friends and everyone he knew. He shared his feelings of fear and trepidation.
I thought my life was over, let me tell you. I had known these friends all of my life, and I was going somewhere new and different. I begged to stay.
Then he talked about how he finally starting meeting new friends, and how the new environment taught him things he’d never known before. He closed with the best call to action I’ve ever heard.
I didn’t think I was going to live through that move, but I did. And I became a better man because of it. I learned compassion and courage. Folks, change is hard, but not growing or adapting is not an option. But I’m with you during this change, and I hope you’re with me.
He insisted that he help deliver the sales training, and we went on to have years of growth and success with a happy group of employees.
So, if you need to influence yourself or others today, try the following:
Story creates a mental imprint that stays with people. It humanizes corporate objectives and simplifies life into something we can understand. All you have to say is, There’s no place like home, and every child in the world will see a visual of ruby slippers being tapped together three times.
Connect with others today. Listen to their stories, and move them by sharing stories that have touched you. Because, ultimately, our universe is one collective, magical, painful, amazing story.
The whole universe depends on everything fitting together just right. If one piece busts, even the smallest piece, the entire Universe will get busted. – Beasts of the Southern Wild
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