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Monthly Archives: September 2012

Corporate Storytelling

Randy Sabourin and Cameron O. Anderson

Every civilization uses or has used story telling as a way to communicate social values, skills, and to change or reinforce behaviors. While stories are often the basis of interaction they are also the building blocks of knowledge and the foundation of memory and learning.  They connect us to our humanity and link our past, present and future by teaching us to anticipate the possible consequences of our actions.  Stories can help us define what is authentic about something or someone.  The stories we tell and hear about our companies comprise our corporate cultures.

Two Story Examples

1)      The Viking Eric the Red with son ‘Lucky’ the Red was exiled from Norway and founded the first settlement in Greenland around 985 AD. The Norse society thrived, in part due to the climate being in a cycle of warmth. At its peak the Arctic settlement had approximately 5,000 inhabitants who built churches and a cathedral, irrigated fields, adapted farming and livestock for the environment, traded with Europe and sourced building material as far away as Canada. The culture survived  for half a millennium. The decline was slow. As the climate cycle changed, the Nordic peoples continued to adapt to their environment, some fled back to Europe and slowly, year after year, the winters grew longer and were harder to survive. Wanting to maintain their European their European style and culture they refused to hunt on land and at sea as the Inuit of the region had for generations. When the settlement was discovered in 1932 it was rumored that they found the last of the populace in the cathedral huddled together and likely starved to death. Continue reading

Mirroring in Sales Situations

by Randy Sabourin

Coaches tell us that continuous practice of the basics is vital regardless of what level of success one has attained. In a profession where success is determined by performance in real time, practice is critical. Many professions implement this approach but sales people and business leaders generally do not.

The methodology of our PVC Sales and Relationship Management training program is considered by many to be advanced. It explores concepts like political acumen, counter-tactics and client relationships relative to that of competitors. We are increasingly being asked to adapt the program to a less experienced sales force. During the two-day PVC Fundamentals Program we spend approximately half the time on preparation (organizing, research, strategy, tactics, value propositions, etc.), and half on face to face client interaction (status, style, improvisation, objection handling, closing skills, appointment making, communication, etc.).

Successful veterans and first time sales people alike can benefit from ‘brushing up’ on some of the basics. There are numerous skills that successful sales people utilize for client interactions. Among the most important are increased awareness, listening, status manipulation, and improvisation. But one that is often overlooked is mirroring or mimicking. Continue reading

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To learn more about us and how we can help your employees become more effective communicators through deliberate, experiential practice, please contact us.
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