What’s Your Story?
There is an old, probably apocryphal story about a British visitor to the Middle East long ago who sees a long, serpentine line leading to a palace. He asks his guide why people are so patiently waiting.
“It’s Saturday morning,” replies the guide, “and this is the day the Caliph hears personal petitions.”
The visitor is astounded. “He listens to all these people and takes action?!”
“Well,” said the guide, “it’s really not that difficult since most people just want their stories to be heard.”
Indeed, that’s what I’ve found in 30+ years of consulting and coaching. People just want someone to listen to them. I met a guy once who opened every conversation with a new acquaintance with, “Tell me your story.” People thought he was a fabulous conversationalist.
(This is from my book, The Consulting Bible.)