Tell the right story to the right people
- Are you telling a story about your goal that resonates with the people who are ready to hear it?
- Tell your story four ways, all true, all based on different worldview, for different audiences.
In the video lecture preceding this assignment Seth mentions something about "being naked..." I got lost at naked, but boy is that how I feel now. It is one thing to tell stories, another to tell stories you heard from other people, but to tell people a story about yourself and your goals? I sure feel a bit under dressed. I even cheated and read these questions prior to the lecture and I'm still at a loss, but here goes.
To the people who pay the bills (Boss, investors, mom and dad): In the venture that you are helping finance I want to be successful on my terms. That doesn't mean I don't want to make a profit, nor does it mean I want to charge the customers an exorbitant rate so I can pay people to care for the three beach houses I see once a year. This venture needs to be one based on trust, relationships, and an understanding that we will not compromise our culture in order to get ahead or to make more money. To you I will define success as being able to pay the bills, pay the employees, and have enough left over to make sure that you are compensated for your trust and investment in me. Our riches will be defined by our experiences and our memories, not strictly by your ROI.
To the staff: First and foremost I can't believe you are here reading and listening to me. I've always wanted to be the boss and now that I am I fear I lack the patience, grace, and wisdom that you need to succeed. As I told the people who pay the bills above our success will be defined by our relationships with our clients and the trust that we develop with them. There is no better differentiator or "value add" than customer service that exceeds expectations. If you stick with me we will work and learn together through the peaks and valleys and when we emerge from the other side we will have stories to tell, memories to hold on to, and someday wages that allow you open the mailbox (or email) without fear of the next bill. I want to stop thinking about money, and I want to provide the same for you. Additionally I'm learning that putting the customers first might be the wrong move... I will work to put you first in hopes (and expectations) that if you are happy you will treat the clients as you have been treated.
To my family: Thank you. I had a wild dream and found the right people to help me get started, as well as a work force crazy enough to go along with me. I couldn't do this without you. I told the people who pay the bills and my co-workers that this will succeed on relationships and trust in one another... which happens to be something we've been working on at home. I know that this might be scary for you, or that my schedule may change, but I feel called to do this and I promise to see your dance recitals, soccer games, and gymnastics performances. I'll even be sure to set aside time to speak to the principal about why you had to visit him/her... again. (I hope my kids read this in 10 years) Thank you, I love you.
To the customer: Thank you. This venture would not succeed or even have a need if it weren't for you. With my staff and family I talk about relationships and trust. Both take time to build and both are easily lost. I ask that you trust us as we get off the ground and continue to do our best to serve you. Throughout the course of our work together I will listen, I will remember things, I will probably Google you (I won't be creepy) because I want to know who you are and how you work best. I want you to see that we are an organization who puts you first. We are here to serve and to "win" with you. I want you to be proud of the work we do together and when some one asks "do you know any one who ______" our name is the first (and only) response you have.
I feel like there were a few soap boxes here... I'll get down now. Thanks for reading.