Annette Simmons is well known in the world of corporate storytelling and her book, The Story Factor, is a classic. In it, Simmons reminds us that the oldest tool of influence remains the most powerful form of communication at our disposal. It is easy to forget that organizations are also social systems and that work is a personal habitat of the individual. The Story Factor brings together three trends that have informed story construction from the beginning. First, storytelling is an art form which unleashes both cognitive and emotional thought process. Second, the realization by the business community that story brings the whole person into the process and in order for our organizations to thrive, whole people need to populate the landscape. Lastly, story contains the old wisdom utilized by current psychologists -that solid relationship is the foundation of any successful enterprise. Telling stories shares experience – the missing component of knowledge management.
The secret to high performance and satisfaction can be found in Daniel Pink’s new offering, Drive. Pink suggests that true motivation comes from three distinct elements – autonomy, mastery and purpose. Autonomy – the desire to direct our lives; Mastery – the urge to get better and better at something that matters; and Purpose – the yearning to do what we do in the service of something bigger than ourselves. The book contains many suggestions and techniques for putting these elements into practice.
Pink asks a simple question that every organization should be asking. If people don’t know why they are doing what they’re doing, how can you expect them to be motivated to do it?