Someone who realizes the importance of story for building a business is Joel Goldberg. In 2020 Goldberg used pandemic time to write a book: Small Ball Big Results. If you want to get better at storytelling, read and study the stories in this book.
While Goldberg is a TV broadcaster for the Kansas City Royals, he also runs a speaking business. He trains companies on how to build a stronger culture.
In these uncertain times there is something that all companies need: more clients. These are emotional times and in order to connect with clients and become influential you need to be a storyteller.
As a professional emcee, Goldberg uses his interviewing skills to successfully moderate events. In fact, he has spent more than 25 years as a television broadcaster, interviewing everyone from Will Ferrell to Wayne Gretzky.
“On a personal note, it’s not all glamour,” says Goldberg. “I’ve covered every sport from snowshoe baseball to tick racing on a pool table, and yes, beer was involved.”
Unlike Goldberg, I have found that most business leaders talk about their work in the same drab way. But there is one hidden asset that will set them apart, something nobody else is offering: their defining stories.
Discoveries in neuroscience prove decision-making is largely emotional, not logical. So how can you persuade the emotional part of the brain? The answer is the art of storytelling. Here is one piece of science to always remember: human brains are hardwired for stories.
As a result of his story-filled presentations, company leaders tell Goldberg their people have higher morale and better teamwork. The stories he shares makes the points memorable.
“Every organization will experience highs and lows,” says Goldberg. “Just like in sports, a well-built team in business can weather the storm during the tough times with a strong company culture. Baseball is a great example of the strength in culture because it is the one sport that takes place daily.”
The University of Wisconsin graduate won a Mid-America Emmy for sports reporting and has covered multiple championship teams in Major League baseball and the National Football League. Through the years he has honed his storytelling skills.
In addition to being a longtime television broadcaster, Goldberg is a motivational speaker. He also hosts the podcast Rounding the Bases. He pivoted during the pandemic adding daily live video podcasts focusing on leadership. The stories refined on the podcasts helped him with his book.
“My book Small Ball Big Results is about the little things that add up to the big wins in baseball, business and life,” says Goldberg. “Leaders and team players alike will draw vital lessons from stories that take you from the baseball field to the board room, revealing what it takes to build an unbeatable culture.”
For me, culture is about core values. To reinforce the core values requires storytelling with a purpose.
Sharing stories allows Goldberg to invite his audience into unique scenarios, leaving them with a fresh perspective. That should be your goal as well.
When writing about Warren Buffett, I discovered how the sage of Omaha uses stories to persuade, gain media coverage, and become a world-famous brand. I have listened to Buffett tell stories in person, and it is no accident he is so proficient at the skill.
I encourage business leaders to do what great business titans, Hollywood movie makers and sports broadcasters do: tell interesting stories that make a point. And make it a point to use your stories to build culture, motivate your people and cement client relationships.