I just finished an amazing book. It really made me think. A Million Miles in a Thousand Years: What I Learned While Editing My Life, by Donald Miller. It was about the author working with two men, Ben and Steve, who wanted
to make a movie of Miller's life. It was during the discussions of his "real life" he discovered their desire to edit it into what makes a good story. They wanted his life to have punch and meaning. As Don worked with Ben and Steve he came to realize his life was boring. In the course of creating the fictional Don for the movie, he was creating the person he wanted to be, someone worth telling a story about.
Don ended up biking across the US, hiking the Inca trail and searching for and finding the father he had never met. Don made a conscious decision to create a better story from the life he was living. The basic structure for a good story has a character who wants something and overcomes conflict to get it. He took a look at what he wanted and then went for it!
This book made me think of my own life. While I have some pretty cool chapters in my story -- travel, learning how to sail, driving a race car, going 139 mph in a jet boat, owning a business and being with my grandfather when he died. I
look at my life now. What am I NOT doing? What scares me? How have I let obligations and expectations neglect my story? It's not about making things up to talk about, or doing things because they "sound" good, heck you
don't have to hike the Inca trail unless you want to... but we should always strive to consciously live an enriched, authentic life.
I think it works the same way with business. The CEO needs to be mindful of the story that is being told about their company. That story changes over time, so being aware of your story, or brand, and what it is saying about your business is critical. There is a great line in the book, "...a story is based on what people think is important, so when we live a story, we are telling people what we think is important." Your brand tells the story of what your company thinks is important. Is that service, innovation, philanthropy? Take a look at your brand story, is it reflecting who you are? Have you lost sight of what's important, what makes your company distinct?
We can help. With two Certified Brand Strategists on staff, we can help your company look inward and review your story. Maybe the brand story that's being told should change, to reflect the direction the company is taking... Give us a call-and let us help tell your story.