What Stories Can Do
There are lots of ways you can communicate about an issue. You can explain every detail. You can create documentation. You can send long e-mails. Unfortunately, in the midst of the chaos of an entrepreneurial venture, it’s hard to imagine how you and your team to digest this information. Instead of explaining the details, telling a story can “cut through” the clutter of the day to day and create “aha” moments. In many cases, telling a story can produce more effective results than explaining the issue. Stories create:
- Clarity. It clarifies the specific message you are trying to deliver. People don’t have the time to focus on the details. If you can offer a story that seems like a similar problem or path, people can jump on board.
- Credibility. It gives credibility to the message when independent third parties deal with the same issues that you are dealing with. When you are going through an issue, aligning to the experience of a third party can help. For example, if you are struggling with the investment process, you can tell the story of the hundreds of wildly successful companies that were turned down by hundreds of investors before they secured their financing.
- Faith. Stories can create faith in your team when they understand that well-known third parties went through the same thing. If you watch companies that have success, but did it in the face of similar challenges to yours, it keeps people on the path.
Stories don’t take the place of regular and clear communications, but they can create themes that keep everyone moving forward.