Archive for the ‘Strategy’ Category

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How to connect brand and sales with oral stories to accelerate growth

Posted by  Shawn Callahan —March 19, 2014
Filed in Business storytelling, Communication, Strategy

Salespeople detest brand gobbledygook. And it’s no wonder. Have you heard brand lingo lately? Lovemarks, saliency, brand-defined competitive sets, brand character, brand claims, brand personality, 80-slide PowerPoint presentations sprinkled with made-up words and forgettable catchphrases … It’s hard for a salesperson to understand this brand bumf, much less translate it into something they can share […]

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A strategic approach to organisational narratives

Posted by  Shawn Callahan —December 17, 2013
Filed in Strategy

Narratives are a connected set of stories that together form a bigger story, one with a beginning, middle and end. It’s a bit like a movie in which each scene is itself a small story. Take Star Wars. Early in the movie we meet Luke, who is living with his aunt and uncle, farming moisture […]

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IABC Survey shows strategic narratives linked to effective change

Posted by  Shawn Callahan —October 21, 2013
Filed in News, Strategy

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. The survey sampled 215 Internal Communication professionals across Australia. 28% of the companies have a strategic […]

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To John Hagel: please don’t take story out of corporate narrative

Posted by  Shawn Callahan —October 9, 2013
Filed in Business storytelling, Strategy

John Hagel is a highly influential business thought leader. He heads up a think tank for Deloitte Touche in the USA and has written some terrific books such as the Power of Pull. Senior leaders listen to John and he’s in the privileged position to introduce new ideas, such as corporate narrative, to boardrooms around […]

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How to get all your executive team on the same page with your strategy

Posted by  Shawn Callahan —July 24, 2013
Filed in Business storytelling, Leadership, Strategy

Have you ever had that feeling that your executive team is all saying they understand and support the strategy but you sense that they are not really on the same page? This is a common occurrence and it becomes starkly apparent when we are helping a company translate their strategy to a story everyone can […]

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A strategic story mustn’t be a script

Posted by  Shawn Callahan —June 6, 2013
Filed in Business storytelling, Strategy

Smart people hate to be told what to do or say. Yet way too often leaders are given a standard set of powerpoint slides or even a script and are asked to share these pearls with their colleagues. Enthusiasm, and authenticity, plummets. There’s definitely a better way. A few months ago I was teaching 150 […]

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Don’t send your strategic story to sea on the Titanic

Posted by  Mark Schenk —May 1, 2013
Filed in Business storytelling, Strategy

We help lots of organisations turn their strategies into memorable and concrete strategic stories. In doing so, a key factor is ensuring its not a ‘Pollyanna’ story’. You know the ones…everything is upbeat, previous successes are emphasised, failures are not mentioned. Theses stories might be politically correct but risk being viewed as inauthentic or not […]

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Pulling the strategy together with a story

Posted by  Shawn Callahan —April 25, 2013
Filed in Strategy

Last week I flew to Vienna to help a pharmaceutical company develop their strategy. It was a two day event. We used the first day to explore their current situation and past by, among other things, creating a massive visual history across one wall. We delved into the important events that have shaped them and […]

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The Role of Storytelling in Government

Posted by  Shawn Callahan —April 4, 2013
Filed in Business storytelling, Strategy

  “Government managers secure the resources they need to operate not by selling products and services to individual customers, but by selling a story of public value creation to elected representatives of the people in legislatures and executive branch positions.”1 Private sector leaders have it easy: they sell their products, they generate revenue, they manage […]

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Bringing strategy alive with an anecdote

Posted by  Shawn Callahan —March 2, 2013
Filed in Business storytelling, Strategy

Herb Kelleher [the longest-serving CEO of Southwest] once told someone, “I can teach you the secret to running this airline in thirty seconds. This is it: We are THE low-cost airline. Once you understand that fact, you can make any decision about this company`s future as well as I can.” “Here`s an example,” he continues. […]

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