Before jumping into the question at hand, let’s acknowledge that the semiconductor shortage has impacted everyone. Even my mom asked me over Thanksgiving dinner if the lack of chips has hurt our business. Naturally, I reciprocated and questioned my Mom’s technique in making her home-made apple sauce.
But I digress …
How are the actual chip companies competing in an environment where there’s not enough chip-making capacity to go around?
Are they throwing money at the problem? (i.e., “We’ll double what Company XYZ offered you and throw in a box of See’s Candies.”)
Are they offering an unlimited supply of vegan dinners for the engineering team?
How are they outmaneuvering their brothers for precious manufacturing capacity?
As reported by Ian King in Bloomberg, one’s storytelling acuity can actually be the determining factor in whether you get the wafer or not. As King acknowledges in his story:
“In an industry where success is often measured in billionths of a meter, storytelling hadn’t been among the list of skills I thought semiconductor executives needed.”
We would argue that storytelling dials up your ability to persuade in any situation.
Think Winston Churchill during WWII.
Think Tom Cruise in “Jerry Maguire” a la “Help me, help you.” While it didn’t exactly win over Cuba Gooding, Jr. it was damn persuasive.
Think Bill Gates convincing IBM to license MS-DOS.
And the list goes on.
If you want to win someone over — and by the way, that includes pitching a story to a journalist — don’t bludgeon the person with facts, figures and pie charts.
Tell a bloody story.
With that as the backdrop, it seems like an appropriate time to resurface our storytelling book. We still have a few hardcopy versions if you’re interested in going old-school and holding the book in your hand.