Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Insert Your Story Here

I’m spending these next few days preparing for a series of presentations next week in Budapest. I’ve been asked to come in and spend a few days with our leadership and management working on presentations, storytelling and fundraising concepts.

Going through my notes and stories, one thing struck me – the most challenging thing about how we tell our stories in the Joint is how personal and individualized they are. The most difficult area we have to focus on, when we teach field staff and others to tell their stories, is helping them choose their stories. Once you start using someone else’s stories, or ideas – it smells fake. And inauthentic stories aren't very inspiring.

All of this came up the other day in a conversation with a colleague who wanted “my” JDC introduction presentation that others could use. The problem is … I don’t have one. Because there isn't one.

You have to talk from your own passion, with your own stories. My awesome story about how we do such-and-such a thing sounds great, but only because I've been there, smelled the perfume, touched the brick and can convey the sound. So I can relay the entire experience authentically. But it's only my story. 

I can’t tell your story as well as you can.

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