Think about someone recently that captivated you or inspired you. What was the one thing that made their message memorable, stand out from other speakers or made you look up from your iPhone? The most connected leaders always have stories. Stories that are constant, current, entertaining and relevant to their cause.
Last week was a big week, focused heavily on developing the next generation. The message to the youth of today was clear: Find your cause and match it to your talents. If you have a job today, you’re already at a competitive disadvantage. You need to connect to a cause to work fewer days and be competitive in the most competitive work environment we’ve ever seen. It’s about self-awareness, and self-awareness keeps you connected to your environment.
Connected leaders keep the video camera running, connecting what is happening around them to their cause or vision. The individuals that captivated me most last week had stories to tell. Their stories were powerful, intriguing and significant.
Frank Sesno asked me a question at the end of GW’s Planet Forward event, remembering a story I told a few years ago, “Jeff, seeing that girl in Brazil that hadn’t eaten in days, is that real?” My mind immediately went back to April 2000 in Brazil. The image was crystal clear – a five year old girl embarrassed and ashamed to be standing at the door asking for food. Stories bring back real images and create a clear vision.
To move any cause forward, it’s going to take connected leaders.
CHALLENGE: When was the last time you told a great story? If you haven’t, are you really connected?