Archive for the ‘Business storytelling’ Category


Why managers shun management books

Posted by  Shawn Callahan —April 14, 2007
Filed in Business storytelling, Leadership Posts

Have you ever noticed that experienced managers rarely read management books? At first I though this might be because they don’t have the time or just don’t like reading. Yet many are voracious newspaper readers. They will get up early in the morning to get through one or more newspapers. Here’s one explanation. Most management […]

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Lessons learning: getting your colleagues to tell their stories

Posted by  Shawn Callahan —April 11, 2007
Filed in Business storytelling, Collaboration

One of the best ways to share knowledge in an organisation is to put people who wouldn’t normally work together on the same project. On projects people have time to get to know one another, have real problems to apply their knowledge and see their colleague’s knowledge in action. Learning (which is the same as […]

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Lessons learning: using stories to share understanding

Posted by  Shawn Callahan —April 8, 2007
Filed in Anecdotes, Business storytelling

This morning (Happy Easter!) I started writing a paper on a narrative approach to lessons learning. I’m at the point of gathering my thoughts and had the idea of sharing some of them as they occur to me. I hope it’s not too ill-informed but if that’s the case I’m hoping you’ll help me correct […]

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Use stories to avoid cognitive overload

Posted by  Shawn Callahan —April 5, 2007
Filed in Business storytelling

Have you ever had the experience of someone telling you something that’s quite interesting while also showing you something that’s quite interesting and you didn’t know where to focus? Should you look at the picture and understand it, or should you listen? Les Posen points to some new research that says this is a big problem with presentation software like […]

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Anecdote: making positive choices

Posted by  Mark Schenk —April 4, 2007
Filed in Anecdotes, Business storytelling

I am in a plane to Brisbane reflecting on the second delivery of a 2.5 day leadership program we have helped develop for the Australian arm of an international company. A large part of the program used anecdotes collected from within the organisation on leadership behaviours and their impact. The feedback from the participants was […]

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Future stories

Posted by  Shawn Callahan —March 12, 2007
Filed in Business storytelling, Strategy

A simple way to help people develop stories of how their organisation might operate in the future is to ask them to consider specific triggering events then explain what happened. It’s important the triggering event is specific yet representative. For example, a triggering event might be Ron Wilson suddenly resigning from the investments section to […]

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Using video to capture stories

Posted by  Shawn Callahan —March 8, 2007
Filed in Business storytelling

There are two examples on the web you should check out. 50 Lessons is a subscription video library of senior executives recounting their experiences. It’s called 50 Lessons because the original set of 50 companies they interviewed were ones that in the early ‘70s helped propel the stock market into a long bull run. These clips are […]

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Meeting you in the US of A

Posted by  Shawn Callahan —March 6, 2007
Filed in Business storytelling, Events

Towards the end of this month I will be in Seattle, Boston and Las Vegas. If you are in or near any of these cities and would like to meet, send me an email and hopefully we can organise a time to catch up. Seattle: 26th March Boston: 28th or 30th March Las Vegas: 2nd […]

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Three dimensions of story

Posted by  Mark Schenk —March 2, 2007
Filed in Business storytelling

Several weeks ago, while preparing a presentation on the use of story in organisations. I came up with quite a long list of ways story is used, but it needed a framework. The following came to me in shower (where good ideas occasionally occur and where bad singing is commonplace). The three main dimensions of story in […]

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Don’t tell me what to do, tell me a story

Posted by  Shawn Callahan —February 27, 2007
Filed in Anecdotes, Business storytelling

Last week I returned from my morning walk to find my 11–year-old daughter filling the blender with ice cream to make a banana smoothie. My first reaction was to say, “What are you doing eating ice cream for breakfast? That’s a bad habit to get into. It’s unhealthy. You should stop having ice cream for […]

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