WRITING

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The most influential story ever told

Most of my work with leaders involves true stories. Very occasionally we might call on a fable, but on the whole the truth is best. However, when I went to the British Library as part of my quest for yet more ‘story science’, I found a paper that proves that fictional...

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Story Science

Enter ‘storytelling for business’ into the Amazon search bar and you will find pages of books proclaiming that stories can drive your brand and/or make you a better leader. One of these books –Story Factor by Annette Simmons – was even included in the 100 Best...

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Strategy Story

It’s that time of year again. Strategies and the colossal PowerPoint presentations that embody them are ripening. But is all the effort worth it? I once worked with a leader who said that he preferred a poor strategy well executed to a great strategy poorly executed....

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On purpose

Everybody is talking about ‘purpose’ at the moment. Simon Sinek with his mantra, “People don’t buy what they do, they buy WHY you do it,” is probably the best known of its advocates, but he isn’t alone. Jim Stengel in his book Grow unveiled analysis that showed that...

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Switch

I just finished reading ‘Switch’ by Chip and Dan Heath. It’s a book about change. There are over 29 thousand business books about change on Amazon, but Switch is number one. How did the Heath brothers get to the top of that pile? I think that part of the answer is...

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Sapiens and the story spectrum

I’ve just finished reading Sapiens – a brief history of humankind by historian Yuval Noah Hirari and I wanted to share some of the valuable leadership lessons I believe it contains. Sapiens is a very ambitious undertaking ‒ how do you begin to summarise the first two...

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Show and Tell

I sat in my first creative writing class in a chilly pub basement in Durham in 1993. I expected to listen to the teacher for the first few weeks. Maybe I would be asked to critique the work of a published writer, but surely I wouldn’t be expected to write. I was...

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Story: a reliable mode of transport

I recently met up with an old friend that I hadn’t seem for a couple of years. We spent five years working for the same organisation and for a good chunk of that time we saw each other on an almost daily basis. Despite the fact that I christened him with one of those...

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Story: a reliable mode of transport

I recently met up with an old friend that I hadn’t seem for a couple of years. We spent five years working for the same organisation and for a good chunk of that time we saw each other on an almost daily basis. Despite the fact that I christened him with one of those...

read more

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