Archive for 2008

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Be careful who you despise

Posted by  Shawn Callahan —August 23, 2008
Filed in Anecdotes, Business storytelling

My friend Jackie hated having Nancy as her manager. She thought her to be cold, insensitive and overbearing and had, in the past, tried twice to get transferred to another department, but to no avail. Nancy was apparently a favorite with her employers, and since Jackie was both new to the area and the job, […]

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In defence of gossip

Posted by  Shawn Callahan —August 18, 2008
Filed in Business storytelling

Gossip is badly maligned in business, but that’s because most of us only have a limited understanding of the concept. For example, gossip is merely anything we say about someone when they are not there to hear it. And it turns out we spend 65% of our talking time recounting who has done what to […]

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Three new storytelling workshops for this year: Melbourne, Canberra, Sydney

Posted by  Shawn Callahan —August 12, 2008
Filed in Business storytelling

By popular demand, we’ve just added three more Storytelling for Leaders workshops. They’ll be held in these Australian cities: Melbourne, 23 September 2008 Sydney, 2 October 2008 Canberra, 20 October 2008 And we haven’t forgotten Brisbane because our next Storytelling for Leaders workshop in that fine city is on the 27th August. Here is the […]

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Anecdote turns four

Posted by  Shawn Callahan —August 11, 2008
Filed in Events

Today is Anecdote’s fourth birthday. Hip hip hooray! Wow, where did those years go? I still clearly remember going to the ASIC office four years ago to register our business name, a name we really couldn’t believe was still available. I guess we started just before business narrative became popular. Thanks to everyone we’ve worked […]

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Individual intelligence can lead to collective stupidity

Posted by  Mark Schenk —August 7, 2008
Filed in Strategy

I am reviewing Fred Kofman’s book ‘Conscious Business’ subtitled ‘How to build value through values. He uses a soccer game to illustrate ‘a puzzling paradox’ whereby coherent and rational individual behavior often produces incoherent and irrational systemic behavior. Systems theory teaches that to optimize the system, you must optimize its sub-systems. Kofman’s soccer analogy kicks […]

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Embedding customer service stories

Posted by  Shawn Callahan —August 6, 2008
Filed in Anecdotes, Business storytelling

A company that values customer service should be teeming with customer service stories. But what do you do if this is not the case? The Ritz-Carlton has developed a narrative-based approach for ensuring customer service is in the minds of all their people. It was described in this Business Week article but I first discovered […]

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Don’t lecture, tell a story

Posted by  Shawn Callahan —August 4, 2008
Filed in Business storytelling

Rather than give a lecture to his fellow comedian, Jerry Seinfeld tells a story to convey his message. This clip is from Jerry’s documentary, Comedian, about his time on the road doing stand-up after Seinfeld. I’ve just ordered it. Hat tip to Garr Reynolds jerry+seinfeld

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Scientific America takes note of storytelling

Posted by  Shawn Callahan —August 1, 2008
Filed in Business storytelling

I was excited to see the current issue of Scientific America has an article on storytelling called The Secrets of Storytelling: Why We Love a Good Yarn. Perhaps a whole new audience for story work will emerge among the world’s scientists. But it got me thinking. When people first encounter storytelling they often are directed […]

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Staff induction – not quite

Posted by  Shawn Callahan —August 1, 2008
Filed in Anecdotes, Business storytelling

Last year Robyn and I ran an interesting project for a large government agency to help Aboriginal people join the department and become productive as quickly as possible. More importantly the department wanted to retain more of their Aboriginal staff who would often leave for a myriad of complex reasons. Of course the project was […]

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Seeing the Big Picture: Blind Men and the Elephant

Posted by  Shawn Callahan —July 27, 2008
Filed in Anecdotes, Business storytelling

It was six men of Indostan To learning much inclined, Who went to see the Elephant (Though all of them were blind), That each by observation Might satisfy his mind. The First approached the Elephant, And happening to fall Against his broad and sturdy side, At once began to bawl: “God bless me! but the […]

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