Weekend Leadership Reading: 12/20/19

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Weekends are time when things slow down a little. Your weekend shouldn’t be two more regular workdays. That’s a sure road to burnout. Take time to refresh yourself. Take time for something different. Take time for some of that reading you can’t find time for during the week.

Here are choice articles on hot leadership topics culled from the business schools, the business press and major consulting firms. This week there are articles about leadership storytelling.

As I pulled this post together, I read this in Admiral Jim Stavridis’s book, Sailing True North.

“we must learn to tell ourselves, our peers, and above all our children the stories that inspire a better world.”

Here are the articles I’ve chosen for this week and two of my own as well.

From Esther Choy: 5 Quotes That Teach You Everything You Need To Know About Leadership Storytelling

“In my book Let the Story Do the Work, I’ve provided tools, templates and examples to help leaders sharpen their business storytelling skills quickly. The quotes below all played a role in shaping my book and the tools it contains. If you need a crash course in business storytelling, they are a great place to start.”

From Art Kleiner: To be a better leader, tell a different story

“Business storyteller Annette Simmons explains how the right narrative can help leaders and listeners broaden their perspective and circle of concern.”

From McKinsey & Company: How to pitch innovative ideas to success

“Emotional stories help innovative ideas attract attention—and get funded. Here are the narratives that help good ideas break through.”

From Michael McGinnis: Why Business People Need Plot And Story Too

“When I talk about telling stories at work, I don’t mean gossiping around the water cooler. While some executives think that statistics convince people and that dryness is a sign of excellence, the best business creators have always known the power and value of a story.”

From Tanmay Vora: Storytelling: Begin With The End in Mind

“Stories and narratives that touch us emotionally have power to transform us. When hearing a moving speech, story or talk, we feel that it is delivered effortlessly but we know it doesn’t happen on its own.”

Two of my posts on leadership storytelling

From Wally Bock via the LeadChange Group: Leadership Storytelling

“When I was a little boy and my grandmother was still alive, we would travel to Philadelphia every Thanksgiving to spend the holiday with her. After dinner, my uncles would go to the front room. They set up a small black and white TV on a folding chair. If you asked them, they would say they were watching the Thanksgiving Day football games. But they were really telling stories.”

From Wally Bock via the Writing Edge: How to tell a story to your kids or your customers

“There’s an awful lot that’s been written about great storytelling, but it really turns out to be pretty simple. George Lucas used a standard story outline called ‘The Hero’s Journey’ to create ‘Star Wars.; You can follow his example.”

This post includes pointers to a simple story outline and other classic story structures.

Book Suggestions

Let the Story Do the Work: The Art of Storytelling for Business Success by Esther Choy

The Story Factor: Inspiration, Influence, and Persuasion through the Art of Storytelling by Annette Simmons

The 10 Stories Great Leaders Tell by Paul Smith

The Storytelling Animal: How Stories Make Us Human by Jonathan Gottschall

Wired for Story: The Writer’s Guide to Using Brain Science to Hook Readers from the Very First Sentence by Lisa Cron

Every Monday, I do a blog post about business reading and business books. Follow this link to my review of The Art of Being Unreasonable

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