May, 2019 | Published by Anecdote - Putting Stories to Work.
Welcome to the May edition of Anecdotally! Each month we share three things: a story, a storytelling tip, and an interesting article. We hope you enjoy this month's content!
Reading time for this issue: 3 minutes
A STORY: Icing breakers and presentation matters
This month on our podcast, Anecdotally Speaking, Shawn shares a short, impactful story illustrating the importance of presentation. How you choose to present your organisation, product or service certainly does matter.
You can watch Shawn retell this story in 170seconds by clicking on the image below.
To listen to the entire episode, and to learn where to use this story, click here.
When Sergei was a young boy, his mother, Galina, decided to enrol him in gymnastics and ballet classes. He soon showed the talents of an "infant prodigy," and Galina became determined to make him a star.
When he was 13 years old, Sergei won a place at the Royal Ballet School in London. He flourished for a while but eventually lost all motivation. By his early 20s, Sergei had achieved most of his professional goals and no longer enjoyed dancing. He wanted little to do with his family, resenting his mother for forcing him into a career he’d never chosen.
Sergei was once filmed backstage after a performance, "looking as though the life had been drained from him." He had muttered, “Every day I hope I will be injured, then I won’t have the option to dance anymore.”
In 2015, Sergei announced he would be retiring from ballet. He filmed a farewell video, which soon went viral. He then fell in love with Natalia Osipova, a Russian ballerina, and came out of retirement.
In recent years, Sergei has surrounded himself with controversy. The article describes him as an "angry rebel." While we don't support his controversial behaviour, his story illustrates the importance of nurturing talent. Had Sergei chosen his path, he wouldn't feel the resentment he does today.
We first came across this story listening to Marcus Buckingham, who presented at the recent Global Business Forum in Sydney. He told a slightly different version of this story, placing blame on the Royal Ballet School for Sergei's loss of motivation.