For the last 8 weeks, I’ve been training you to tell better stories.
We’ve gone from telling personal stories to telling business small talk stories.
All so I can help you build a strong personal brand. Because good storytelling is an important part of building your own personal brand.
But now, we’re going to dig into your business even further.
We’re going to tell stories about your business from a different angle. (Feel free to strike a pose and Vogue like Madonna.)
Remember, I’m still going to show you how to spin mundane activities & routine life situations into storytelling gold like Seinfeld by adding…
But now, I’m refocusing these Instagram prompts from business small talk to water cooler talk. It takes behind the scenes to a whole other level. You’ll pretend you’re the employee, and you’ll gossip about the boss and clients. It’s still internet small talk (which I’ve spent years mastering), but you’re taking an everyday traditional office occurrence and using it to connect with your readers. You’re adding an extra layer of human to your business stories.
How this Instagram training will work:
- I’ll tell a business small talk story.
- I’ll dissect it.
- I’ll give you a prompt.
You’ll fill in the blanks and spin storytelling gold.
Ready? Here’s my story:
I rarely meet clients in real life.
Mostly because I work with people all over the world.
(From New Orleans to New Amsterdam. From Los Angeles to Little Italy. From…well, just listen to International Love by Pitbull, and you’ll get the idea. What up, Mr. Worldwide?)
And traveling on an airplane isn’t convenient or easy for a wheelchair user like me.
So I talk with clients over the phone.
I plug the cord from my earbuds into my cell phone’s port (I haven’t cut the cord. I know. It’s practically barbaric.).
I tap their phone number on my phone’s keyboard (Slowly like a sloth. Otherwise, my brain turns the taps into a random song’s rhythm, and I keep tapping because I’m lost in the song.).
And I wait for them to answer (And pace around — which helps me focus — being careful not to tangle the earbud cord in my wheels, breaking it.).
Recently, I was fortunate enough to meet a client in real life.
We looked each other up and down like clothing racks at a Macy’s sale, and then chatted like old friends.
But about 5 minutes into our conversation, she made a bold statement.
“Autumn, did you know you have two different voices? A phone voice and a face-to-face voice.”
I had no idea. She elaborated.
“On the phone, your tone and inflection are upbeat and overly polite like you’re a telemarketer. In person, your tone and inflection are relaxed and almost gruff. I don’t feel like you’re going to try to sell me a new warranty for my car.”
A little bit of my caramel latte dripped out of my mouth, and I almost choked as I tried to slurp it back up like spaghetti.
She was right. I have 2 different voices and so do my siblings. (Must be genetic.)
But I bet my niece and nephew would tell you I have 3 different voices.
Here’s the dissection:
Water cooler talk activity or situation — Meeting a client in real life.
Details — How I usually talk with clients.
Drama — My client telling me I have a phone voice and an in-person voice.
Emotions — Realizing she’s right and trying not to spit out my latte in shock.
Here’s your prompt:
Water cooler talk activity or situation — Has a client ever made a bold statement to you?
Details — Give me 3 specifics about that situation.
Drama — Was that bold statement a shock?
Emotions — How does that make you feel?
Now it’s your turn:
- Fill out the prompt.
- Snap a picture.
- And share your story on Instagram.
Feeling extra share-y? Tag me on Instagram. I promise to love & comment on your post. Because I know it’ll be storytelling gold.
Wanna see what water cooler talk other people are spinning into storytelling gold and give them some love? Use the hashtag #grumpyprompts