Everyone likes a good story. Thanks to the tremendous growth in digital communications, tools like e-mail, Facebook, YouTube and others make it possible to spread stories across the globe at the speed of byte and the convenience of a mouse click. The multifaceted opportunity that this growing phenomenon presents for business is often underestimated. While many organizations have realized the rich potential of using electronic tools to market their goods and services to customers, many of these same organizations have yet to appreciate the potential benefits of electronic storytelling for energizing their workforce.
Storytelling in a work setting is a powerful way to spotlight innovation and acknowledge activities that are done right. It can recognize the quiet, unsung heroes of an organization and be the catalytic spark that inspires others to do likewise. It puts a human face on everyday successes. If you acknowledge employees for doing the right things right, you connect their individual contributions to your business strategy. The trick is to play up those stories that best illustrate support for your priorities and values.
You can stimulate improvements with digital storytelling and even magnify the call to action with the use of recognition and incentives, all within the digital communications network of your organization. But, the most important element is the storytelling itself. In our digital age, best practices and successes can be captured quickly, shared online and discussed — while they are still news. The key to successful storytelling is to do it often and applaud as many people as possible.
Louise Anderson, CPIM, is president of Anderson Performance Improvement Company in Hastings, Minn. Anderson is also a member of the Performance Improvement Council (PIC), a professional organization of performance marketing exec- utives that is a strategic industry group of the Incentive Marketing Association (IMA). The PIC is collectively focused on helping companies optimize their investment in human capital through proven and innovative reward and recognition solutions. Anderson can be reached at 651-438-9825 or firstname.lastname@example.org.