Anecdote turns 10

Posted by Shawn Callahan - August 11, 2014
Filed in News

10 years ago on this date I wandered into the registration office to register Anecdote as a new business with the view that we could use story techniques to bring more humanity back into the workplace. My long-term business partner and dear friend Mark joined soon after and in those early days our customers were a little bemused by the idea that stories could make a difference. How have things changed.

Happy Birthday balloons in the sky

We were probably a little before our time but we persisted and as we narrowed our focus to helping leaders influence and inspire with stories as well as helping companies tell the story of their strategy, we found ourselves getting busier and busier.

Today our programs are delivered around the World by Anecdote and a network of business partners who are also passionate about the role stories can have in business.

A big thanks to Mark for being a great business partner and friend. Anecdote would not exist without you.

Thanks to the Anecdote team. You rock Helen, Kerenza, Ron, Paul and Jason.

And thanks to all our great supporters, clients, families and friends.

And finally a big hug and kiss to Sheenagh who has been a solid supporter and cheerleader despite the ups and downs of running a business. Thanks honey.

We are looking forward to the next 10 years.

 

New European Storytelling for Leaders Partners

Posted by Mark Schenk - July 8, 2014
Filed in News

On 19 and 20 June I was in London to run the accreditation program for a few of our new Storytelling for Leaders (TM) Partners. We had a fun time together and its always a pleasure working with great people. Working with experienced and professional facilitators and storytellers meant I learned lots as well. Many thanks to Stuart for helping me focus the Connection Stories activity on ‘moments’.

If you are in the UK or Europe (apparently there is a difference) and want to learn more about Storytelling for Leaders, give one of them a call.

 

London-accreditation

New Storytelling for Leaders partners

Back Row L-R: Pete Fox (who has been an Anecdote Partner in the UK for many years), Paul Joosten (based in The Netherlands), Ronald van Domberg (also based in The Netherlands)

Front Row L-R: Hannah Havas (based in France), yours truly, Stuart Reid (based in the UK).

 

Whoever tells the best story wins

Posted by Mark Schenk - April 16, 2014
Filed in Fun, News

In 2001, Annette Simmons published her book The Story Factor. I read it cover to cover and as I write this my dog-eared, tagged and heavily annotated copy sits in front of me. The book has been widely acclaimed as one of the most influential business storytelling books written. Her other titles include Whoever Tells the Best Story Wins published in 2007. We have kept in contact with Annette over the years and greatly admire the practical focus of her work.

.whoever tells best story photo Annette Simmons photo

When we heard that the Australian Storytelling Guild NSW was hosting Annette in Sydney on 5 June 2014, we jumped at the chance to be the Gold Sponsor for the event. It’s a great opportunity for business leaders to spend a day with one of the world’s leading story practitioners. The workshop, titled Whoever Tells the Best Story Wins is aimed at leaders at all levels of an organisation, influencers and thought leaders, change agents, entrepreneurs, and anyone involved in setting strategic direction for themselves or their organisations. Annette’s workshops get rave reviews.

The early bird offer for the workshop is open until 5pm on 30 April. It’s a great opportunity to learn from a world leader. Tickets and additional information is available here.

Shawn and I look forward to seeing you there.

 

Yammer Opens Doors to Sales Opportunities with Storytelling

Posted by Shawn Callahan - January 18, 2014
Filed in Business storytelling, News

yammer-anecdote-casestudy

Late last year we helped Yammer’s Customer Success Managers build their story capability across their global team using our Storytelling for Leaders Program. They learned how to tell, elicit and trigger stories. And like many companies we work with our story-listening techniques are a real eye-opener for them.

Today we’re delighted we can share this case study describing what we did and the impact it had for Yammer.

To download the case study just click here.

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Storytelling for Leaders workshop in Los Angeles

Posted by Shawn Callahan - January 6, 2014
Filed in Business storytelling, Communication, News

In 92 days we’ll be running Storytelling for Leaders workshop in Los Angeles. I’m looking forward to this week in LA because I’ll have just finished a week-long road trip with my brother between San Francisco and LA (should create lots of stories) and we are planning a get together for fellow business storytelling practitioners in the LA region (let me know if you are interested in coming).

To buy tickets to the event just click below. We are currently looking for a good venue. Any suggestions would be great.

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IABC Survey shows strategic narratives linked to effective change

Posted by Shawn Callahan - October 21, 2013
Filed in News, Strategic clarity

The International Association of Business Communications (IABC) recently published the findings from its internal communication (iC) survey for 2013. It was interesting to see it had an entire section dedicated to strategic narratives. Here are some of the results.

IABC survey image

The survey sampled 215 Internal Communication professionals across Australia.

28% of the companies have a strategic narrative in place.

For those companies that have a strategic narrative in place 66% of IC professional reported that change is managed well in those organisations. When the company lacked a strategic story the ICs only rated their companies doing well on change 38% of the time.

It was also interesting to see that 90% of companies purposely employed face-to-face briefings as part of their communication strategies yet only 65% felt is was done well.

Of course you should take these surveys with a grain of salt and remember that correlation doesn’t mean causation. What’s most interesting to me is that the survey dedicated so much space just to strategic narratives.

Benefits of a strategic narrative

More and more companies are coming to understand that a strategic narrative provides a number of benefits:

  • it gets the executives on the same page around the strategy. Without a story strategies rely on ambiguous statements like “valued added differentiation”. When you use this type of amorphous language executives can appear to be saying the same thing when they actually mean different things. Stories, on the other hand, use concrete language which is much harder to misunderstand.
  • a strategic story explains why a set of strategic choices were made and people are more likely to accept a new direction, even if they don’t agree with it entirely, if it’s explained and seems fair.
  • a strategic story can be told without notes or PowerPoint slides in your own words and supported by your own experiences. People want authentic communication from their leaders and a basic story structure helps.
  • lots of people can get involved in creating the story thus spreading the ownership of the strategy across the company. Strategic stories can be a force for better employee engagement when done well.

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Storytelling for Sales Public workshop in Melbourne – only 2 days to go

Posted by Kevin Bishop - March 18, 2013
Filed in Business storytelling, News

We are all looking for better ways to sell.

Better ways to build relationships with our clients. Better ways to understand their needs. Better ways to communicate our products and services with impact.

We all want to stand out from our competitors.

Anecdote’s Storytelling for Sales Program develop’s your story skills to do exactly that.

There are now only 2 days to go before we run our first Storytelling for Sales public workshop here in Melbourne this Wednesday (the 20th March 2013).

Tickets for this special workshop are only $695, but there are only a few places left, so you’ll need to be in quick.

To register please go here.

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Storytelling for Leaders – London

Posted by Daryl Cook - March 14, 2013
Filed in News

We’re very excited to announce that we’ll be running our popular *Storytelling for Leaders* program in London on Monday, 17th June 2013.
This opportunity doesn’t present itself that often, so we hope you can join us. Early-bird tickets are on sale until the 12th April.

Register now »

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Storytelling for Sales in Melbourne

Posted by Daryl Cook - March 7, 2013
Filed in News

Continuing our series of public workshops in 2013, we’re really excited about running our *Storytelling for Sales* program in Melbourne on Wednesday, 20th March 2013.
Great sales people are great storytellers. But we often assume this a natural gift that you either have, or you don’t. It’s not the case. We can all use the natural power of stories to sell.
Our program will show you how you can systematically harness the natural power of stories to create connection with, understand the needs of, and communicate clearer with your clients.
Gatner recently put sixty people from their sales team through this program to kick off the new year. Here’s what they said about it …
> “The session was high energy, hands-on and practical. My team loved it. At Gartner we’re excellent at training our people on the left brain approach. But Anecdote and storytelling gives us the right brain, the emotion that’s so important in selling. I highly recommend it.”
>
> — Regional Vice President, Australia & New Zealand
Tickets for this workshop are $695. There are only four places left so don’t delay. [Register now »](http://www.eventbrite.com/event/5490550384/)

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Storytelling for Sales – First ever public workshop (Melbourne, 20th March 2013)

Posted by Kevin Bishop - February 18, 2013
Filed in Business storytelling, News

We are all looking for better ways to sell.

Better ways to build relationships with our clients. Better ways to understand their needs. Better ways to communicate our products and services with impact.

We all want to stand out from our competitors.

Anecdote’s Storytelling for Sales Program develop’s your story skills to do exactly that.

We are excited to announce that we’ll be running our first Storytelling for Sales public workshop here in Melbourne on Wednesday the 20th March 2013.

Tickets for this special workshop are only $695, but there are only six places available, so you’ll need to be in quick.

To find out more about the program and to register please go here.

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