Building Sandcastles in the Air – How a Leader can Use stories to reach out

My daily chat with the sister, on life, became a bet. I told her, “Jie, do you know a story can be created from nothing?”

Do you have a story to tell?

In my opinion, it’s like building sand castles in the air.

Of course she didn’t believe me. “Prove it,” she said cynically.

I replied, “Ok. Give me two characters.”

“A baby and a pet crocodile.”

I readily accepted the bet. And started my story,

“Once upon a time, there lived an aged  and childless couple. One day, the old man was out fishing when he heard a rustling sound in the reeds.

“He was afraid because this was crocodile territory. He decided to pack up. But he heard cries. Now, crocodiles don’t cry, they only shed tears. So curiosity overwhelmed the old man and he decided to check it out.

“He moved towards the bushes. Using his fishing rod, he poked the ground. There was something hard. Moving forward, he separated the reeds. A straw basket lay within the long grasses.

“The old man bent down and picked up the straw basket. A purring sound came from within.

“When he opened it, there lay a baby girl tucked in there with her toy crocodile!”

At this moment, my sister felt that the story was simple enough. But I carried on . . .

“The old man was so excited that he carried the basket home. It could fit a lot of fish!

“And he left the baby and her crocodile behind – The End.”

“What?” The sister screamed!

I then explained that there was a moral to this story.

Moral of The Story

People sometimes become so comfortable with what they do, that they fail to see other pleasant surprises in their lives. They only see what they want to see. And don’t see what is right in front of them.

The sister was fully convinced.

***
Now, the reason why I relate this incident to you, is because every one of us had the responsibility as a mentor. Whether you are a parent, manager or business owner, leadership is about being able to build rapport with your team.

Fact tells, and stories sell. Use a story to reach out to your team. Be creative. You would be surprised in the depth of creativity that
you actually have.

I’m not suggesting that you use creativity and spin stories of deceit to deceive your team members and superiors. What I am saying is that leaders must be creative enough to think up of solutions for a challenge. Telling stories compels you to connect the dots to two or more seemingly unrelated factors.

Besides, there is a reason why Aesop Fables are still so popular. Because everyone loves a good moral to the story they just read. There is a sense of closure.

I will share with you how you can also improve on your story-telling skills in another post.

Cheers,

Mark

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