The reason why your business story doesn’t define who you are

Your business story is an ensemble of lessons you have learned from failing, succeeding, studying, living and existing as a human being but it doesn’t define who you are.

That is why you should share it: it tells your perspective clients why you are the most qualified and motivated person to help them.  

Why you should share your story 

When you have a business you can do two things: 

  1. Talk about what you do 
  2. Talk about why you do it 

Or, you can do a third thing: talk about what you do and why you do it at the same time. 

Most businesses focus on the what: I sell pens, I coach women, I have a magazine, it takes 90 minutes, it’s easy, I repair furniture etc … 

Which might work but here is the problem: potentially anyone in the world could do those things. We do not live in a world where there is a scarcity of solutions, if anything the opposite is true.

So when you limit yourself to sharing what you are doing, you are saying you are like everyone else. But you are not, are you?

How to share a story with clients without saying what you do? 

Remember what we said? You should share what you do and why you do it. And the best way to do that is with a story. When you share the why behind your business, you tap into people’s emotions. 

Despite what our rational self might think, we buy because of our emotions. And a story helps you to tap into those. Let’s be clear, if you do that it’s not because you are a scam or you want to trick people. But because you want to connect to them, authentically. You want to tell them: “I get you and here is why I can help you”. 

Your business story taught you something but it doesn’t define who you are

When I talk to my entrepreneurs about how they can share their stories, their instinct is to retract, fear their stories and making them as impersonal as possible. If you’ve done that too, let me tell you: it’s not a winning strategy but is completely natural. 

There are several reasons why we do that, some are: 

  1. Fear of judgment 
  2. Lack of experience in business storytelling 
  3. Strong attachment to your stories 

I’ll focus on the third one for this post. 

Our stories often stop us because we are way too attached to them. What I mean is that we attach so much fear and insecurities to what has happened in our lives that we start to believe that people are going to see us through those lenses. We think we are our stories. But we are not. 

We are the product of our stories but we are not our stories

Let me take a step back. Before even thinking about sharing your story you have to go through two steps: 

  1. Knowing your story 
  2. Acknowledging your story 

And the reasons why you go through those steps is because they help you to detach yourself from your story and see it from the outside. In other words, you have a more objective eye on them. 

Think about how easy it is to give advice to people when we’re not in their situation. That’s because as external advisors, we can see things more clearly. 

With your story, is the same. 

Therefore, before thinking about sharing it, you have to find the courage to see it from the outside, appreciate it, examine it. And naturally is a very difficult thing to do by yourself. But that’s the necessary step you need to make to eliminate fear, judgemental thoughts and insecurities. 

And in case you were wondering, yes, there are all those emotions involved when you share your business story (if you do it the right way). 

Remember: a story is only as good as you are able to reflect and learn from it.

That’s what you share. Missing this step, means you’ll have half stories and will start thinking: “why isn’t this working? Why are people not reacting to this?”

Don’t sabotage yourself. Go all the way in because your business story taught you so much. But you are not your stories.