The Story of You – Case Study Stories
It can be really difficult to tell or write a story about ourselves. We are constantly aware of the other person or the potential reader and wonder what they will think about us. We worry that we are bragging too much or that we aren’t bragging enough. We wonder what others want us to say and focus our attention on that rather than what we want to say. When we write we may use too many exclamation marks and come across as false or write too formally as we try to sound like we know what we are doing.
Often, when we tell a story about ourselves it fails to resonate with others.
Therefore, we sometimes need someone else to tell our stories for us. Other people do not get blocked by insecurity. They don’t wonder what the reaction will be. They just tell it like they see it. There may be a little bit of worry about what you will think about what they are saying but if you invite honesty, you are likely to get it.
And here’s the thing. People almost always say good things when they are invited to tell us what they think about us. People LOVE to give their opinion and they take it seriously when you ask for it. They will use adjectives that we would never even consider applying to ourselves because we are too humble or worried about showing off. They have insights about us that we have no awareness of because its extremely difficult to be objective about ourselves.
I suggest you give it a go. Ask a friend or a colleague to tell you a story about you. It may be an anecdote about something you did that stuck with them or it may be a description of your qualities. Whatever it is, sit back and listen. And you will find out more about you. As others see you. And you will find there are all sorts of great stories about you that you had no idea even existed.
Now let’s think about this with regard to business. We have the very same tendencies when it comes to writing or talking about our organizations. It’s not easy to find the place between underplaying ourselves and being arrogant when it comes to utilising our communication tools. When businesses tell us that they are the ‘best’ at something it goes right past us as it does not ring true. It never does when we say it about ourselves. However, when someone else says it about a business we listen. And, often, we act based on this recommendation.
So it is also important for businesses to ask their friends to share their stories. Your loyal customers and partners have a lot to say if they keep coming back to you. You can ask for testimonials but you will get a lot more from people who really like you through ‘Case Study Stories’. Ask them for a story about how your business, product or service helped them. Ask them to tell you how you improved their lives, helped them overcome a challenge or changed the way they think about the world. A Case Study Story is a very powerful business tool. But it must be authentic and it must demonstrate results. So do be careful how you ask. Treat your customer or client like your friend and ask them to tell you a great story. About you. Then, put this story on your website, in your newsletter, on your Facebook page and share it with staff, friends and family. They will no doubt have other great stories to add as well.
You and your business are important to others. Let them help by sharing their best story about you with you. And the rest of the world…