I’ve learned two things during the Great Pause: 1) Heart is the solution to scarcity, and 2) happiness is the path to prosperity.
Working hard, working smart, being consistent, delivering value, are important, sure, but everyone is doing that. It’s hard to differentiate that way.
“Why?” is the differentiator. That comes from the heart. Being “happy” let’s you overcome obstacles to your mission with endless creative energy. It’s not only productive it’s magnetic.
What is the story we tell ourselves? What is the story we tell others? Are they aligned?
If you’re not sure, reach out, we’ll figure it out. What you do after that is up to you.
While stories give a framework or environment for what you are trying to communicate, messages are clear, specific thoughts on what you are seeking to deliver.
What makes your story interesting to others is the picture you paint about what the future looks like when you succeed. Your messaging makes it clear what’s in it for the rest of us when you do. To sum up, stories give context while messages provide a conclusion.
Appropriate messaging is needed to support your storytelling. If you’re interested in learning more about the difference between your story and your messaging, reach out and schedule a 15 minute phone call.
When a organization’s brand underperforms, so does the organization and its stakeholders. What might be responsible for an underperforming brand? Too much emphasis on identity than story. Too much emphasis on reach and frequency than authenticity and consistency. A story that plays it safe. A story that is hijacked as it moves farther from the leader who is the defacto author of the story. A story that isn’t based on a deeply rooted belief system.
How does an organization “be real”? Clarify and articulate why you exist in the first place. Besides making money, what is your purpose? What good are you trying to do in the world? Why does that matter? What’s in it for the rest of us? If you build story around the answers, the story has the power to attract allies to the cause. It’s a call to action that other people, who think like you, have been waiting for. A story rooted in universal truths aligns your plans with your actions. It gives your message consistency. Your ground truth is an under leveraged asset. Your competition can’t replicate it. You can use it as a business driver.
If you want to learn how to clarify and articulate your higher purpose in the form of a compelling story that attracts allies to the cause, coffee is on me.
If the seat of the stool is the story about the difference you make in the world, what are its three supporting legs? One would be your higher purpose. What drives you besides making money? Another would be your vision. What does the world look like when you succeed? The third would be your mission. If your vision paints a picture of a better future state, what are the beliefs and values that guide you there?
Many organization, especially non-profits, rely on mission statements alone. Most of them read like a list of the services they provide with some human resources compliance issues having to do with diversity and community bolted on. Many business mission statements play it safe and come off generic by promising value, a commitment to service and quality, and so on. Things everyone promises. As for higher purpose, that doesn’t even occur to most. Yet, it is an important differentiator to most buyers. Your higher purpose may not even reside in the realm “business” but be something more aspirational or even spiritual. While you may not share it publicly you need to know it, internalize it, and figure out how to imply and signify it.
If this piques your interest and you like to learn more about how to find and articulate your higher purpose and why that matters, coffee is on me.
Branding is like gardening. Find fertile ground, your ground truth, or your higher purpose besides making money. Sometimes you have to amend the soil. In addition to your higher purpose might be a premise or worldview. Plant seeds. This is like your vision of what the world looks like when you succeed. Once the seed is planted, or the vision declared boldly, you’re all in. Tend the garden. Water lovingly and weed ruthlessly and relentlessly. Affirm what supports your purpose and let go of what doesn’t no matter how “business as usual” that may be. Attract pollinators, people who share your values and worldview. Wonderful. Now, reap what you sow.
Out of college I produced theater in southern New Mexico, mounting a new production every four to six weeks non-stop for 5 years. People rehearsed with me for three hours a night after working eight hours a day. Then they performed on the weekends, all for little or no money. Why would they do this? Working together in service of something greater than you is very satisfying.