Last summer while driving down the mountain from Sierra National Forest at elevation 4,000 feet near Fresno, California, a mountain lion ran in front of my car and down the mountain.
It was the most beautiful animal I had ever seen and was at least 8 feet from nose to tail. I immediately thought, if I could see this rare and gorgeous creature in the wild, then I could do anything.
Yes, it was by chance and only lasted a few seconds but I increased my chances of seeing it by volunteering as a life guard at a boy scout camp my son had attended. Driving back from camp at dusk didn’t hurt.
A couple of weeks later, my husband and were on the Royal Mile in Edinburgh Scotland at the same time as the Queen of England and happened to catch her walking into a cathedral with her husband Prince Philip and grandson Prince William and Kate.
I was further inspired to do great things after this second awesome experience. How many people ever see either the Queen or a mountain lion in the wild? I saw both in the same summer.
Later that year I started my own PR consulting company, MMC PR. These brief but remarkable sitings actually did influence me to do this.
I write about the lion and the Queen to show that talking about something that happened to you is way more interesting than just stating a string of facts and figures.
Story telling allows you to engage your audience in more personal manner. And when you engage emotions, you can change attitudes more easily. Were you engaged by the lion story? How could you not be?
Most authorities on business and public relations agree with this fact. Just search “story telling” on one of my favorite sites Harvard Business Review and many stories will come up saying successful communications is buoyed by a great story.
I recently watched a phenomenal hour long Stanford Entrepreneur Center talk called “Calling All Entrepreneurial Heroes” by VC Legend Tim Draper. Here is Stanford’s description of it.
This informative article adds the tip that great story telling is not always positive. Important tasks are hard to do and showing a challenge or a rejection is sometimes more engaging then just saying everything is coming up roses.