Storytelling Through a Business Prism

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Showmanship Trumps Expertise in A PR Agency Review Process That’s Broken

The typical process that guides a company in evaluating PR agencies and ultimately choosing a winner is broken. It was broken when I participated in my first new-biz meeting — wicker furniture, of all things; we did not win — in 1983. It’s still broken today. In the vast majority of PR agency reviews, the …more

The Back Story (and Drama) Behind 20 Years in Asia

The Agency opened its doors in Asia on Oct. 20, 1996. It has been an amazing, fun, torturous, weird, satisfying, frustrating and enlightening run. I made my first trip to Asia in 1994 as part of a press tour for Hyundai Electronics (now known as Hynix). After researching PR resources in that part of the …more

The Mechanics of Working with an Illustrator (from a PR perspective)

PR under utilizes illustration as a form of visual storytelling. Yet, one could make an argument that no visual form better suits PR. After all, anything is possible with illustration (literally). Still, the idea of engaging with an illustrator can seem daunting — if not downright scary — for those steeped in the world of …more

Building the Habit of Business Storytelling

Many business professionals today accept storytelling as an effective means for communicating … in theory. Whether they actually embrace the act is a different story (retaining my reputation for bad puns). Of course, many books promise to recast you with Ira Glass’s gift for narrative and Jimmy Kimmel’s wit. I wrote about one such a …more

Time Machine Takes Us Back to When The New York Times Launched a Website

Earlier this year, The New York Times celebrated the 20-year anniversary of its website. My Tuesday post shared a back story leading up to the site’s launch, compliments of Pete Lewis who was the paper’s foreign correspondent for cyberspace  at the time. Today, we look at the actual words from Jan. 22, 1996 (my takes …more

Goodness in Stories of Conflict

As a storyteller, I often combine sad stories with one another. Mostly with a positive outcome, but often I use stories without a happy ending. Stories where listeners really have to think about what they just learned. Stories where there is no gold at the end of the rainbow. It’s amazing when such stories evoke …more

FT Rejects Biz Storytelling, Beware of Moving Images and Infomercials Baffle FTC

The grab bag returns with three vignettes from the wacky world of communications.   Financial Times Rejects Business Storytelling The job description for columnists always includes the verb, provoke. In this regard, I suppose the column by FT’s Lucy Kellaway, “Stories Are Best for the Bible and In Novels” works. After all, I’m taking the …more

10 Charts from the Silicon Valley Index that Caught My Attention

Joint Venture Silicon Valley is incredibly thorough in putting together its annual index on Silicon Valley. Perhaps too thorough. Reviewing the 100-page document might be best described as a trudge. To save you the time of plodding through the pages, here are the CliffsNotes.   Where Invention Happens The combined patents generated in Silicon Valley …more