February 7, 2011

Leadership Limerick: The Need for Narrative

Every Monday, I offer a leadership limerick, highlighting an idea or strategy about effective leadership in limerick form.

You must have a story to tell
An be prepared to deliver it well

For if interest is there
And you have nothing to share

Support is unlikely to swell

Entrepreneurs have long prepared for the pitch, the chance to entice venture capitalists with a short presentation about their new company, program, or service.

Similarly, employees and job seekers have long known the value of the elevator speech, the chance to make their case to an important decision-maker during the length of an elevator ride.

But all of us have a need for narrative whenever we are seeking to entice the attention, interest, or support of others.  Artfully crafting that short story into language and a form that excites others upon hearing it is a skillset that no individual can overlook.  This is particularly true if the complete story to be told is quite long, complex, or filled with facts.

Once upon a time we all knew the power of personal stories.  The next time you need to make your case honor this tradition with a narrative worth knowing.

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