Think about your friends that always talk about money. Actually, you might not have any because its boring to hear friends only talk about money. Businesses that just talk about money are boring, too.
No great businesses talk only about money. Yes they know how they get it, but they spend most of their time actually talking about things that mean something
- Starbucks talks about a shared planet
- Google talks about organizing the world’s information
- Apple talks about putting a ding in the universe
- American Cancer Society talks about curing cancer
- St. Jude Hospital talks about saving children’s lives
- Ashoka talks about making everyone a Changemaker
- Acumen Fund talks about eradicating poverty
So what do you talk about?
I just started reading the book Rippling – How Social Entrepreneurs Spread Innovation and I can’t put it down. It’s loaded with stories worth talking about. Stories of people who have created “today’s most innovative and effective approaches to solving social and environmental challenges.” People, not much different from you and me, who show that when “empathy, creativity, passion, and persistence are combined, significant, life-altering progress is indeed possible.”
Yes, if you’re starting a social enterprise, you have to be able to communicate how your enterprise will make money and sustain operations. But before that, you better have a really good story for starting it in the first place, and then get even better at telling that. And telling it with unbridled enthusiasm, passion, and conviction.
Like breakthrough innovation, great stories start when people have a challenge and then create an inspiring way to overcome it. Win or lose, that is a story with reading, and a business worth supporting.
So whether you are talking to customers, investors, or partners, make sure to share your story. In the meantime, I invite you to join me in reading Rippling for more inspiration.
Need more tips to tell a good story? Then watch this great TED video by Andrew Stanton.