Working in an innovation space can feel lonely when only a small number of people outside of your team understand what you are trying to accomplish. Or you are proudly rolling out a new project that solves a client’s problem, but they don’t understand how they fit in the solution. The program may be badly needed, but if the people who need your service don’t understand how it helps them, it won’t succeed. It is impossible to sell a product or service if you cannot clearly define it to your ideal customer, clients or co-workers.
Seeing your concept with an unbiased point of view is sometimes called ‘The Curse of Knowledge”. While you may understand the value that you deliver if you cannot concisely explain why someone needs your offering getting a ‘yes’ can be very difficult. This applies to work colleagues as well to clients. If you cannot convey why a new process is important or what the changes to a program mean it is very difficult to get people to comply.
We can solve this problem with a strategic narrative.
A narrative strategy distils a complex concept into a simple story to create clarity around a project, product or service. This shareable story assists in forming a culture of understanding around your innovative solution to motivate people to get on board.
Let’s explain this in further detail with a simple story.
Your ‘Story’ needs to cross the bridge that divides a ‘New Project’ from the land of ‘Implementation’. Once the ‘Story’ journeys across this bridge it explains where it is going to people in the land of ‘Implementation’. ‘Story’ is successful on its journey because people in ‘Implementation’ understand how they can help it on its way.
This is how a story can work to bridge the gap between a new product or service and being embraced by clients, colleagues or the community.
True innovation relies on a clear vision for the future. This is where understanding your unique story becomes truly powerful.
Stories are not born spontaneously in a magical puff of smoke; they are shepherded into the world by a guide and supported by a flock. This shepherd is a strategic narrative advisor who creates clarity around the story of your work so it can move into the future.
Creating the world that we will live in tomorrow requires a bridge to connect your vision to a community. Let your story do the work for you.
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Letting go to let come. Letting go of something that you have created and love can be hard. Remember, letting go doesn’t mean gone. Letting go is making room. We only have so much time and attention in our lives. And sometimes the best thing to do is to set something free so someone else can look after it. This letting go allows more come into your life. Take for example, writing a song. If this song is never performed it means that no one will ever be able to give it back to you. If you perform it, other people will hear it and absorb parts of it as their own. They in turn may sing it and give something of themselves to it. This interpretation of your work transforms it into something you could never imagine. It also creates a connection that wasn’t there before.
That doesn’t mean you should give everything you have away. Certainly protect what must stay with you. We all have to own things. Just be mindful to never hold anything so close that it can never change. Let it get out there, experience and experiment and come back to you a little bit older and wiser! Layers of meaning come from a variety of sources, and creates a deeper, richer maturity. Let your creations explore and find a life you never could have dream of.
Life is good when you know when to let go. Holding on to too many things is a huge responsibility. It is ok to let other people carry some of the load. You never know when things are going to come back your way and often when you least expect it in the least likely places. If you want to improve your vision make sure to focus on the things that aren’t right in front of you. Remember the things on the periphery are just as important.
When you let go, learn let it come back. Give something to your community so they can give it back to you. This shared experience brings us all together and we can create something new. This is how a community is built.
You always have a chance if you live to fight another day. If you wake up in the morning to fight again, you are one of the lucky ones. – Howard Davis (My Dad)
You can jump off a cliff without knowing what is on the other side. We love stories about people who take risks. We love them because we admire bravery. The best stories are of triumph in the face of adversity.
The end of the year is creeping up. A time of a reflection. We look back and see what we can do better or what we want to change moving forward. Evaluation works most of the time, except when it doesn’t. Sometimes the best thing to do is to stop. Some situations are not worth making changes. Accept when something has run it’s course and walk away.
The best beginning is often the end of something else. When a job, relationship or situation has no value for you any more walk away. It isn’t quitting, it is looking after what is best for you and only you know that.
Life has ups and downs. It is just the way it is. Things are good for a while, they get bad for a while. We are not always able to control what happens to us. What we can do is control our reaction to situations.
Jumping off a cliff is good for you. It means that you have faith in your abilities to make the best decisions possible in any given situation.
What does this have to do with social media? The other side of removing things from your life means you have room for something new. Where do you find this? Explore! Read blogs, find interesting people to talk to on Twitter, join groups. Find, friend and then facilitate change through conversations.
We need help from the people in our lives to make sure we can get to where we want to go. If it is worth doing, it is done with the help of many hands.
Go out and find help or give it where it is needed!