Our human nature sometimes convinces us that our anecdotes are the funniest, our history the most interesting, and our opinions the most correct, but there are ways to make sure you’re not monopolizing the conversation; ways to share about yourself and your story without losing others’ attention.
Familiarize yourself ahead of time with your audience and have clear, set intentions for leading conversation– Why do they need to hear your story? What is the goal of telling your story? What do you have that can help improve their lives?
Don’t let listeners’ minds wonder what the point is– it’s your narrative to control and recount– use it to connect with them, rather than the opposite. Similarly, include your strong connection to the common issue or cause, making the connection between personal experience and your business ventures.
Don’t forget that stories evolve, after all, you might still be living it! This will inevitably refine your story, as you continue to grow and change as a person. There is power in the way we own our journeys and what we learned along the way.
The 5 must-haves of an interactive narrative:
- Introduction – Who are you? Why should the audience listen?
- Hook – Grab your listeners’ attention!
- Bridge – Bridge the gap between introducing your story and the purpose of sharing it?
- Description – The juicy parts! Teach us!
- Conclusion – What you want your audience to take away, learn, or do? What is your call to action?
To listen to our audience’s stories and hear the feedback they received, listen to the full session above.
Welcome Olivia and welcome Sharyn. Modify both of you and I was just explaining to everyone how this is going to work, Sharyn, and then I’ll let you take over, I’ll introduce myself real quick and then I’ll let Olivia and Sharyn you introduce yourselves and we’ll get started.
So I’m Jeff Sass, I’m the co-founder and COO of.club domains and the COO of pawn.com. And I’m a career-long marketer and storyteller. And it’s my pleasure to be a co-host tonight with you on lead with your story. Um, Sure. Um, I’m a graphic designer. I focus on brand strategy and, um, yeah, I’m so excited to be here tonight.
Hi, Olivia and Jeffrey. [00:01:00] Hopefully I have better, um, better audio then. Um, I’m Sharon Coniac, I’m a brand strategist and storytelling coach and, uh, you know, Jeffrey and I are here in this room. And Olivia, we’re glad to have you here as well to give up people an opportunity to tell their story, to tell a brand story that’s compelling and that’s going to get customers, uh, or investors or whoever their audience is to follow them and be interested in what they have to say.
And so, uh, I missed the very beginning Jeffrey. I don’t know if you went through the specifics, but we do a three minute drill. The timer starts when your mic goes live, and you have the opportunity in three minutes to tell us your story. And then we will give you feedback and hopefully give you some tips that can make you a better storyteller.
Um, and remember when you come up, your mic is live. So, um, you know, you can just go ahead and [00:02:00] start telling your story and Jeffrey will, we’ll hit the, uh, timer and we’ll get going. Awesome. Well, thank you, Sharon. So let’s start bringing some people up on stage. I see some people with their hands up and remember when you come on stage, mute yourself until we call on you, and it’s your chance to tell your story.
So I’m going to start inviting some people and welcome. Hello, Tema. Hello, Ron. Hello? Hello? Hello. All right, so we’ll start with Tema and Tema when you, um, Let’s see someone is un-muted there. We’re getting an echo here. Um, Tema, when you start your story, I’ll start the timer. And as Sharon said, you’ll have three minutes.
And at the end of three minutes, we’re going to cut you off. Um, and then talk about your story and how you did so Tema, welcome to lead with your story. When you start talking, I’ll start the timer.[00:03:00]
Hello everyone. My name is Kima Smith’s Boskin, and I’m a long time. Um, it professional, I’ve been in the industry for about 30 years for the last 21 years. I have used my skills to help work, uh, consult with digital it products to make them more accessible to individuals with disabilities. And the reason that I pivoted in my career 21 years ago was that because I fell madly in love with a man who happened to be blind.
Um, and he also happened to still have his mother writing his checks and balancing his checkbook. So as a new wife and an it geek, um, I wanted to create a space where he could bank just as independently as [00:04:00] anyone else, because I couldn’t think of anything more horrible. Than having something happen to me and him having to go back to his mom and answering to her for his financial decisions.
And, um, I’m really happy to say that I’ve managed to accomplish that. Worked with chase bank to create the most accessible banking application in the world. Uh, I moved on to the insurance industry, worked with Cigna for several years and I am now starting my own company called Bosque and inclusion where I offer those same services to consulting with other companies, to help them create a more, uh, accessible digital product.
Not just because it’s the right thing to do, but because there’s a $13 trillion worldwide market that is not being. Um, utilized, uh, individuals with disabilities have, uh, [00:05:00] globally $13 trillion worth of dispensable income that is not being marketed to, uh, and is not being approached accessibly. Um, digital properties are the primary way that individuals can do their banking.
They can do their shopping. It makes life so much easier for them, not only in their personal lives, but in their workplace to be able to function, um, on a level playing field with everyone else. So, um, I have recently started looking at, and my father is probably, uh, dying, but I’ve recently started working with the cannabis industry.
Um, medical marijuana is a. In my opinion, a very, uh, legitimate business that [00:06:00] provides help to a lot of customers with disabilities. And so I’ve started specializing in helping.
Okay. Um, thank you, Timo. Good jobs, Sherry. Do you want to,
yeah, Tema. Um, I loved hearing your story and, uh, so we’re getting some river. Thank you for meeting Tema. Um, I love hearing your story and I love hearing the why behind, why people get into, um, the startups that they do and what really drives them because, you know, ultimately it is the passion that we have for things that makes it.
And so I definitely felt that, um, I do think that. I was a little, I got confused by the end because I thought you were going in a different direction. So I wasn’t certain whether the [00:07:00] purpose of you coming up to tell your story was to tell us the story about the banking app or you were pivoting and going somewhere else.
So, um, that’s important to make sure that you have a really linear progression of your thought processes into the, you know, where you’re going so that you, so you know where you’re going and you can go sort of backwards and create your story from there. So if you know what people, what you want people to do at the very end, what you want them as the takeaway, then you can lead them through that generally linearly and take that progression straight through.
Hopefully that would be helpful for you. And also I did like the stats, um, and if from the perspective of the bank, Then I think those stats are really important and you should put them up front. Yeah. I think one thing that I failed to do was communicate that, um, creating an accessible product, opens the door and I’m [00:08:00] now transferring from working for other companies to achieve that, to opening my own business and opening my services out to other industries as, so becoming instead of working for someone I’m moving into a consultancy and I wasn’t, um, I wasn’t concise enough with that.
Olivia, did you have any? Yeah. Um, I loved, um, understanding. I always love when, when I understand why people do what they do. Um, and I liked that the fact that you started with your story, then like your values, and then you went to the whole market opportunity. I really enjoyed learning about these opportunities that are coming out right now.
Um, but again, I agree with Sharon. I [00:09:00] think I got a little confused by the end. Um, I think just a clear call to action would help. Um, what do you want your audience to do once you’re done telling your story? And I always share this tip. Um, the structure could be what you do, how you do it and why you do it.
And then you can just add the call to action. Hope that
yeah, I think those are, those are great points and I agree. You know, you want to shape, what is the story about? And, and in this case, it’s almost about how, um, you know, how love, what started as love and a labor of love. Literally, literally, and figuratively turned into, um, a business opportunity and an entrepreneurial path that not only helped you in your relationship with a blind partner, but helped you really help many other people and, you know, [00:10:00] turn it into a real business.
So I think, um, all the pieces were there. I agree with Sharon, it was a little bit confusing when you mentioned your dad and the, and the cannabis toward the end, because it didn’t, you know, if you want to stick to that, you need to make that relate to the structure of the story. We just talked about.
Jeffrey, can you get a little closer to. Yeah, I’m having some technical difficulties. Sorry about that. Thanks Brian. Oh, it’s better. I think maybe just get closer. Yeah. Yeah. Okay. Do others agree? Oh, I’m sure. That’s right. Thank you, Ron. Well, Ron, with that, you’re up next and good to see you. It’s been a while.
I’m happy to have you your story. And when you start talking, I’m going to start your three minutes. All right. Um, this is a story about how to create a compelling story. I had a consulting [00:11:00] assignment during years when I was doing a lot of consulting. My client manufactured, very elegant hardwood door. Of this sort, that costs many thousands of dollars that you put it on the front of your home with seeing glass and so on hand-carved.
And they were about to be driven into bankruptcy by an interloper company that had a cheaper door. So a homeowner, an architect, the builder would come into a dealership and we would be shown my client’s door and they would, excuse me, they would say, oh, this is so beautiful. This is so wonderful. How much does it cost?
And the cost was made them gasp. So they would say, uh, well, is there a less expensive door system? And [00:12:00] then the salesperson would walk them over to the cheaper competitor. And that’s where the sale was. So I, I wanted to do a little research on the people who did buy these doors systems, what got them to do so despite the extra cost of the thousands of dollars of extra costs, I recruited strangely enough, I recruited the accountant who worked for me, who was interested in research.
She was very intelligent and very verbal. And I told her, you’re going to call these people. And I want you to have one principle in mind. You’re only going to be talking to a handful of people. These are phone interviews, and some of them are going to say something [00:13:00] that is completely strange and peculiar.
You’re going to feel dumb and you’re going to want to get off the point. Instead put up a big green flag and she did that. She did only seven interviews. She heard one past client say that they found their door inspiring and she thought that was weird. What do they mean by that? So she probed, it turned out that became the theme at a trade show.
And 4,000 people went through it. All of whom would have had price, qualms, and knowing how to price qualm.
And that’s the story. Oh, how to do some research and get there?
Well, that was pretty good timing, Ron, as you could hear, [00:14:00] very good timing with your three minutes there. Uh, Sharon, what do you think.
I thought it was very interesting. Um, I do, I was waiting for, I found myself wondering, um, where you were going with that story. So at the very end you did tie it up, but I did find myself, um, meandering around a little bit wondering where the point of the story was and how you are going to get to that point.
So maybe tightening a little bit of it up would be helpful. Um, and also some of the details, uh, I think one of the things we often do when we’re telling a story is we want to give a lot of detail. We want to paint, paint a very broad stroke. Um, when we’re telling our story, and sometimes we have to be cautious about that, that we don’t provide too many details because it’s sort of like the devil’s in the details.
That’s the idea. Sometimes that people actually get waylaid by the details and they [00:15:00] start wondering, well, why do I need to know this? And why do I need to know that if you ever watch any show, you know, if you’re on watching a movie or, or, or some of these serial shows on Netflix and things like that, you kind of get tied up in all the little details, wondering if you need to know them and they can sometimes take you down the path of being a little bit disinterested or a little bit confused as to what the story is.
So I found myself you like, w w what she tells would you like to have omitted Sharon? Um, I think there was some information about like the person that the person that you had doing the research.
Yeah, that, yeah, that she was maybe that an accountant, then you were talking about how she, you know, her intellect and things like that. Like, are they all relative relevant details? And so if they really drive the story forward, then you shouldn’t add them into driving the story forward, then I would consider omitting [00:16:00] them or making them fall back.
Yeah. I thought that was, um, interesting, Ryan. I think that maybe what would have been helpful is maybe teasing a little bit of where you were going since it wasn’t clear. So since you have this story about a door, you could maybe start with something like, you know, I’m want to share a story about how a door opened a door to meet and understand pricing better, you know, or something like that.
And then tell that story. Um, so you’re giving a hint of where it’s going in terms of how, you know, by positioning at a certain way you were able to solve the pricing issue, or I, I think you want to give some sort of an indicator here so that as we are meandering through this story about it, um, we might have an idea of where it’s heading.
That makes how to take a situation where everyone has an objection and turn it into a situation where knowing as an [00:17:00] objection, you led with a statement like that, then as people, and then you’re talking about a door, people are going to wonder, where is this going? You know, and you’ll have them hook right.
Or are more concretely. It could have said how to take a price, objection that everybody had and surgically exercises. So no one has it. Yeah. So something like that I think would have been helpful. Um, Olivia, what did you think you, um, yeah, I think I agree with you both. And I would like to add. Um, we always, or we should be mindful of the tone of voice that we’re using.
Um, and the energy we’re bringing while telling the story, because that also contributes to you getting the attention and keeping people engaged. That’s all I wanted to add on top of what you guys have already said.
No, no, no. [00:18:00] I’m saying like we have to be mindful, um, of those little details, because at some point I was getting a little confused as well. And if you’re telling a story that has, uh, like details like Shannon was saying, and that you want to give those details, but tone of voice will always help you keep people engaged while you’re telling like certain details.
Are you saying my tone of voice didn’t have enough energy or enthusiasm you would have liked to have. Um, maybe in the middle of the story. Yes. Keep us engaged. Thank you, Ron. I’d love to see you take that story. Um, and like Jeffrey had mentioned, I’d love to see, take that story from the charter and take it from the door standpoint and how the door opened up opportunities for you to look at your customers or for them to look at their customers in a different way and how [00:19:00] the door, so you could use that as a metaphor.
Um, and I think that that could really be powerful and it could create a powerful hook for you to open up a story like that, and then sort of build on the layers of that in the framework. I , my own self critique would be that this story is semi famous in my circle of people I mentoring and companies I’ve.
And they call it the green flag story about how you listened for the thing that makes you feel stupid and confused and paying attention to that. And probing further about that becomes the key to a positioning. That is a winner. That’s that, to those who have valued this story the most is the heart of the story.
And I feel like I didn’t get that across. I didn’t get the green flag concept across when I did it [00:20:00] here. Just now. Yeah, definitely the green flag. Sorry, Jeffrey. Um, yeah, the green flag tossed in that story. I did hear you mention it. And I sorta like pinned it and said, oh, that’s kind of interesting, but then it did go anywhere for me.
So I let it go. Yeah, it needed, what did we would be great, Ron, and I would recommend this to anyone who participates in lead with. If the feedback you get is helpful. Come back in another week, come back another Monday night and come up on stage and tell a revised version of your story. And you can, we can all see how it evolved and, and hopefully, um, came together better.
Thank you. That’s generous. I’ll do that. Thank you, Jeffrey. Thank you, Ron. So let’s go to, and I hope I pronounce it correctly, correctly. Rica, Vera Rica. Very you’re up next. And when you start your story, I’ll start the timer[00:21:00]
Rico. Vera. Are you there? Would you like to tell your story?
Okay. We’re going to skip over Rico Vera. And if you come back, flash your mic and I’ll know that you’re back and we’ll come back to you. Otherwise, let’s go on to send sheet, send cheat, welcome to lead with your story and.
Angela Jeffrey I’m audible. Yes. We can hear you. And I’m going to start the time, or as soon as you start talking.
So thanks a lot for this opportunity. I’m going to share a story, which is actually relatable to everybody at the startup club. This is my story. I completed my engineering in 2017 and I wanted to start something of my own, which led me to, uh, work on an idea for a couple of months. But unfortunately like startups, 90% of the ideas fail mine also fail.
And I was facing failures in my startup [00:22:00] days. So with those failures, I started a job, but an MNC so that I can earn financially then left that job because I had an enthusiasm for startup. I started an internship with the company and for quite a while, working with different companies, I learned that, um, I learned on the.
That teamwork is something that is, that, that really matters for a, for a, uh, teamwork is something that really matters for a startup, uh, so that it can work well. So I, I, uh, I got an experience with B2B, uh, working with different clients. I got experience with B2C right now. I have, uh, I have an overall experience of working with around 500,000 customers.
I manage a website at a startup and with all the experience, um, I would say that, um, something that I’m more passionate about is what, uh, what has led me to be into a product [00:23:00] role. And I love working in that space. And the way forward for me is the way forward for me is to make more connections and help others on the same job.
So anyone or any, anything, anything at all, if anyone wants to reach out for getting any help regarding product startups into digital space or SAS, I’m really happy to help my, you can find the LinkedIn profile in my link tree and, uh, that’s all, that’s all definitely Fansler. Thank you, Sandra. You have about a minute left.
If there’s anything you wanted to add, otherwise we’ll start giving you some, uh, the, it would be really good if you provide some feedback because this is first time I’ve been to a plumbers. And this is the first time also speaking, uh, about story of myself. Very good. And for the first time, I think you did very well and I’m very well in clubhouse as well.
Um, [00:24:00] I’ll just start a little bit and then go to Sharon and Olivia. I forgot where I thought you did a great job was, was giving a little bit of a background of yourself and how you got to trying some things. And then you came to the realization that teamwork was essential for success in startups. And I thought at that point you were going to give us, you know, more of, of what, what was the thing that made you realize that?
And then how did you, how will you incorporate that realization into your plan going forward? And I feel like you introduced it extremely well and then kind of left us hanging there and I would have loved to have learned more about, you know, what was it that made you focus on teamwork and then how have you, um, put that forth, uh, in your own journey going forward from that realization?
Yeah, I agree with you. I was. When you said, when you got to the realization of teamwork, I was like, oh great. This is something to [00:25:00] do with, um, something that I actually love a lot. I was very engaged and interested. And then, um, I do have to say though, you were very clear on what you can help with and how to reach you if anyone needed your help.
So I think you had a minute about a minute left and you could have probably taken your time to breathe in between. Um, it was a little too fast for me, but I think, um, if you connect it, your realization with what you do in-between and, and taking your time a little bit to explain how you got to what you can help with.
It would have been a great story.
Yes. Can I ask you a question? And that, is that, what was, what’s your goal? What was your goal in coming up to tell us this story today? So, uh, my goal here was to [00:26:00] make connections and my goal here was to help others who are reaching out because this is a startup club. Everybody’s is trying out just like I did at 90% of the time.
It doesn’t go as we planned. Right. So the experience that I had faced in my startups, where I tried to start that, and just like I said, I failed the realization that it’s a team game. I have ideated a lot of things, but I was not able to execute it properly. So getting experience in product management, in working for different startups and understanding that there is, there is a concept of execution and doing it properly is what I would offer to others as an, uh, uh, as an, uh, what I would offer to others.
And that’s what I wanted to. I wanted to make my pitch clearer in terms of what I can offer to others with my Expedia. Yeah. Okay. So that’s where I thought you were going. I just wanted you to clarify that for me. So I think that, um, as a [00:27:00] Livia said, free said that I think if you built your story around the idea of teamwork, it would be helpful for you because essentially what you’re you’re pitching is that, um, it, it, right.
You need a team in order to make it happen and you have to have the right players. Um, you have to have the right people on your team to make a startup work or to make any business work. And so if you created a hook at the beginning around the idea of teamwork, and then from there. Uh, laid the foundation of the rest of your story.
I think that you would, um, you know, have a significantly more impactful story and you would be able to lead people through the journey. And until at the very end, they were like, well, I want to be part of, uh, since she needs to need him to be part of my team, if that makes any sense. Yeah. [00:28:00] That makes sense.
Uh, thanks a lot. Basically what I did was, uh, Jeffrey was speaking to Ron. He said that they will be, uh, having a three minutes timer. So in the meantime I scripted some points and I will start speaking with those points. And I did not, I was not able to keep tabs of time when deftly said that, yeah, there’s a minute left.
Then I realized I was too fast and telling the story. So definitely I’ll definitely work on, uh, Telling the story better hope, just like you said, but I was not able to carry that forward and make it compelling enough. So essentially what is your, oh my God. And for coming on stage and for your first time on clubhouse and onstage, you did very well.
So we look forward to seeing you again here. I was going to say, if this was your first time, it was great. Um, he’s practicing like the best way to, um, refine your story is just telling it and telling it [00:29:00] over and over again. So yeah. Yep. Is, is your promise essentially, to help people build a team, a great team, or to get a existing team, to be effective, to empower the existing people and how they relate to each other, which is it.
So I want to help. So suppose for example, I’m kind of a newer tech startup and then trying to build myself a, build something of my own. I want that person, I want to help that person get the right team or also work efficiently with the existing team, which in terms of product. So it’s both great. Thank you for sharing that.
Thanks, Ron. Yeah, let’s go on and go back to Rico. Vera. I saw you. You’re very soft. You’re very, almost can’t be heard. Sorry. Is that better? No, uh, not to me. Um, I would suggest to get really close to your mother. Okay. That’s what I’m doing right [00:30:00] now. So let’s go back to Rico, Vera. I saw you flashing your mic.
So when you start speaking, I’ll start the timer for your three,
um, good evening. And thank you, Jeffrey for welcoming me. Uh, my name is
Um, way. Oh, he’s actually about right? Yes. Can you guys hear Rica veer? I cannot hear. Nope. No, can’t hear him at all. Okay. Um, can you hear me now? Yes, I can hear you. No, I can hear you just fine. Okay then. Um, okay. My name is Rico Vera, and, uh, I’m all the way from Namibia. So, um, my story is actually about how I started the carrier that I am doing now.
I’m a graphic designer and photographer, [00:31:00] um, and I design, um, for different people like, uh, companies and so on. So, um, my story is actually. Started when I was in church. And so I was in church and I had a desire to take pictures of people in church, um, because I realized everyone when everyone comes to church, you know, they are so well dressed and all.
So I realized, well, why don’t I buy a camera? And I take just for free, because it was, I was part of the congregation. And then, um, one thing led to another, um, people started asking me how much I charge for my pride and my photography. And, um, I didn’t really have a desire to get money through it. Um, I didn’t, I D I had a job.
Um, but, uh, it definitely a [00:32:00] salesperson. So from there on what, um, I studied. Investing knowledge, um, learning online courses and all this, how to get my photography better. And I did that and I also started doing some research in the environment, um, on people and prices and how to get to become a better photographer.
So I’ve been doing photography for four years now. And from there on what led me into, um, graphic designing. So I started doing graphic design, um, because I, I liked the quality of pictures that I was providing an, a, a went into now, uh, product photography and all this. So, um, my main point is, uh, you know, sometimes when you start something you don’t really think.
You know, it’s going to become a business. It’s kind of become an income sometime to do [00:33:00] it as a hobby. So I did add this and hobby, but, and then now, as I’m speaking, it’s a career for me and it’s, it’s been great. Now I have a desire to teach others also, um, to share and to start doing courses for people to teach them because of what I learned in the period of time.
Um, so I do graphic designing. I do photography. Um, I do a lot of logo designing and all that. So for anyone who has any desires for, for anything in that direction, you are welcome to deem DME. Um, it’s actually my first time also on less than a month.
So that was the end of three minutes, right? Okay, Sharon, if you were able to hear, read your various story, [00:34:00] do you have some thoughts or Olivia? Yeah. Um, if I can go first since it’s, um, same industry that I work in, um, it was, uh, it was a pretty clear story, um, how it started and where, like what you like the call to action, where you want people to do after listening to your story.
What I do think, um, could be good to add is what makes you stand out, um, from the crowd of all the designers and photographers out there. If you could include something personal, like you started talking about how going to church helped you realize that it could be interesting to take pictures of people there.
And then one thing led to the other. I think I was missing more of the. To learn more about what you do and what makes you stand out if that helps?[00:35:00]
Yes. Um, most definitely. I feel that I left some of this stuff out. Um, the, uh, this is my first day in class to actually speak, uh, on this platform. Uh, so I had to rush and try to get my points together. Um, my desire is led by quality over quantity. Um, I am someone who likes to, uh, to provide quality.
What I feel fit to me. Um, apart from what I do, um, I do a lot of research online because I want them to provide the best quality and I. I also help companies build up print. So I have to make sure that I’m up to date with the current graphics and everything. Yes, it’s true. I left, lifted out. Yeah. So if you can include those [00:36:00] things into your three minute story, I think, um, that will help you bring in the client that you want and then, um, help you also stand out and differentiate yourself from other designers.
What do you think, Sharon? Yeah, I, I, I agree with you wholeheartedly, Olivia, I think we Covera one of the things that we should remember when we’re telling a story is that we want to tell the story that’s uniquely ours, because anyone can tell a story, right. But only we can tell our story. So make sure that you have.
Um, the details and the nuances, the little, you know, the little things in your story that are really specific to you, because those are the things that are going to make others connect with you. So, um, you were telling, again, like Olivia mentioned the story about going to church and taking pictures of people.
Maybe you want to add something in there about, you know, how did that make them [00:37:00] feel when they saw those pictures? Um, and that, you know, I’ll, I’ll embellish there myself and just say like, maybe they felt this incredible joy when they saw themselves dressed in their finest and feeling their best, that made you want to say, um, you know, I want to make that feeling come through to other people.
And so I want to continue using photography to do that. And then, you know, in taking the quality idea a little bit further, then you can build on that from there.
Great. Well, thank you, Rick Rivera. Thank you for telling your story. Let’s go on to our next storyteller tonight, who will be Dean Dean. When you start your story, I’m going to start your three minutes. Okay. Thank you. I am Dean. And when I was a little boy, my grandfather got me started on a coin collection, [00:38:00] collecting copper pennies, and that became an important thing of mine that I have taken with me whenever I’ve traveled and or moved whether, and when I was a little older, I took a road trip with my father in the Southwest.
And one of the things I remember was getting these sheets of copper at an old, uh, a dos town mind in Arizona. And we wrote letters. Uh, back east on them. You can just write on it with a pencil or pen and fast forward a ways longer. I was living in my own house and it burned down. And some of the things that survived the fire very well, where the, my coin collection and these things made of copper.
And [00:39:00] earlier this year, I learned about cryptocurrency. And one of the things I learned about was that there’s virtually no customer service. When someone makes a wallet to hold their coins, they’re given this set of keys, their words, and they’re given those one time and that person has all the obligation to keep them safe.
Nobody else has a copy of this. And I immediately thought of these competitions. And I have made a product called copper seed safe that I pitched my name on to you a few weeks ago. And it is a fireproof waterproof, easy, attractive, and affordable way to save important information. And I’ve got a really neat process for making them and I just need more people to know about them.
And that’s why I came up here. So thank you.[00:40:00]
Thank you, Dean. You have a little bit of time left, but I thought that, um, you did a great job of setting things up with collecting the copper coins and leaning toward the, the protective property of copper. When you had the. And I think when you started talking about your, your product and what you’re doing for crypto, I don’t, I think you could have done a stronger job of making the connection and making it more explicit.
I knew what you did because I’ve heard you speak before. Um, but I think I’m not sure if others listening were so clear that you are making a physical copper wallet, that you can store these words in because if they get burned or lost or destroyed you’re out of your crypto. So I feel like you’ve had a great beginning and I think you could have had a bit of a stronger ending making that connection and tying back to how you took this copper [00:41:00] knowledge and turn that into a physical copper wallet.
Yeah, indeed. I re I remember you from, I believe you were up on the name game, right? Um, so I remember the story that you initially told to us there. And I think this story is greatly improved in terms of taking, um, a real experience that’s specific to you and, and weaving it into your product. Um, so I absolutely agree with Jeffrey there that you, there was a missed opportunity there for you to make the connection between the two things that could be simple segway as saying, you know, um, when I lost everything in a fire, I realized how temporary.
Life was, or, or, or my valuables were. And I decided that I couldn’t allow that to happen to someone else that they could lose their older [00:42:00] currency. So in the crypto stage, so maybe you could take that and use that as your segue. Um, and then the other comment that I had with. Um, just be careful when you use words like wallet, because while it means one thing to one person, and it might not mean the same thing in crypto where it might not mean the same thing to your customer.
So you might want to have a little bit more explanation in there because people, when you say the word wallet, people are probably thinking of, you know, your, your temp, your, um, your leather wallet that you keep your credit cards and your money in with your cash clip on it or whatever. And so it may have a slightly different meaning to you.
And so just make sure you embellish it a little bit or use some other verbiage around it, so that it’s clear what you’re communicating.
That’s really great, helpful feedback. Thank you.[00:43:00]
Yeah, I just want to add, I do want to say that I did, I don’t know anything about cryptocurrency and I did understand that it was a physical product to keep this information safe. I did not understand what type of product, but I think the feedback Paul’s already been really clear about that. Um, I do want to say that I wish you would have like, given us like a call to action, like what’s next?
How do we find this product? Where is it? Um, uh, you know, like what comes after you telling this story?
Yeah. Thank you for that. That’s um, that’s a question for me too. Um, I’m good at making this stuff and how to get it out there is, uh, where I’m having trouble. So I’ll take that to heart. Yeah. Um, maybe get someone who’s lost a lot of money from crypto. There’s a few [00:44:00] notable cases of people who had their wallets and money stolen and getting them to endorse your product after they’ve lost their money the old way.
But anyway, that’s just a thought. Thanks. Thank you Dean, for playing lead with your story. Let’s go to Evie next. Um, hope I pronounce it correctly. When you start your story, I’ll start the
Eva. Are you there? If you’re there on mute yourself? Yes, I’m here. My apologies. I, um, worked with a lot of companies. Uh, I, didn’t not like I worked Q startups. I hated the fact that, I mean, you work with really big companies pretty much, and they just take your ideas pretty much [00:45:00] and parade themselves. And I hated that.
So maybe this my ego. So I decided that I started to program, uh, Ruby on rails and Python. Then I create a chat bot
and the chat bots, basically, it’s actually a big deal. I’m really good at forecasting. So one of the things that people thought like, oh, you cannot sell chop bots because you’re cutting people out of jobs. And my head was like, no, I actually. Told them? No, we actually, basically, we’re kind of, uh, you know, how, like, instead of printing papers, we become pretty much, [00:46:00] uh, people who actually pushing papers for people.
And it’s very, it was, it was a very difficult just to solve this idea to other people because of chatbots with like dating apps and everything. So there’s that huge issue that we had to push out. Um, sorry. Uh, it’s, it’s, I’m dealing with a lot of that. Uh, But, yeah, that’s my story. Pretty much. I’m done drop the mic.
You have about a minute left. If you wanted to add anything and maybe some sort of oh, okay.
Yeah. Does it matter depending on where you’re from. Okay. So, um, I’ll go with EVI. Um, so what I would love for you to [00:47:00] do is take, um, so one of the things that’s really important to do when you’re going to go tell a story is to find that. Who your audience is, what the problem is and how can you solve it for them.
Those are kind of three things that are going to be really helpful for you in creating a story that’s compelling and is going to drive people to be engaged with it and to want to engage with you. So if you can answer those three questions because I’m, I wasn’t able to answer them from what you provided to us with this, with your story.
So if you can answer the question of, you know, who is it you’re talking to, what do you want them to do? What problem do you solve for them? Sorry, that’s the second one. And then what do you want them to do? Um, that would be helpful in putting together a framework for your story that I think could be more valuable for you.
That makes sense. Yeah. I [00:48:00] was just, um, well of course I agree with Sharon. I was trying to follow along. Right now, I don’t, I’m not sure what you want people to know about what you do. So the, the, those questions that Sharon just shared, I think are going to help you clarify that and bring it down into words that we’re all going to be able to understand.
And, and even if we’re not in your industry or your market, we’re still be able to understand
one other point of the, I do think that I did hear the, I hear frustration and I’ve, I’ve heard that before from other people who come up and they tell their story, you know, uh, even Dean was saying that that he’s frustrated and being able to communicate, um, to people and get them to, to buy his product.
So, um, there’s a F there’s one thing that’s really, you kind of have to be very careful with that frustration and [00:49:00] make sure that it’s not a frustration. That sounds. You’re having the first station, but it’s a frustration you’re understanding that other people have, if that makes sense, because yeah, you want empathy.
You want people to be into in, you want people to get engaged in what you’re saying, and you want them to say, oh yep. That’s me. I’ve been there and they’re not shaking their heads. The whole, yeah. They’re shaking their head the whole time. And the more they shake the head by the end, they’re going like, oh yeah, you got me.
So now what can I do? What, how will, how can I sign up with you? Where can I find you? How can I follow you? And the, all that head shaking leads to them saying yes to you, Sharon, I really liked that. The head shaking thing is really cute. I really liked that.
And I think that the EVI, the passion that you just expressed and the little laugh you [00:50:00] had when you talked to Sharon, just there, if you can bring some of that. Into the telling of your story, some of that life liveliness and energy, um, that would help a great deal to like you understand the problem and the frustration and you’re the solution.
So, amen. Well, thank you, Abby. I hope this was helpful. And for everyone, you know, who told this story tonight, we welcome you all to come back, you know, in a future week and, and tell this story again, or tell a different story. Cause practices is what it’s all about and clubhouse and rooms like this. Give you a great opportunity to practice telling your story.
And that’s really what we’re here for. Thank you, Sharon. Thank you. Thank you. We’ve got a few more minutes left. So we have Byron and Knorr on stage. So we want to give them a chance to tell their story. And if you didn’t make it on stage tonight, because we run out of time, um, please do come back another Monday night at [00:51:00] 6:00 PM for another edition of lead with your story.
And we’ll be sure to get you up on stage with that Byron. Um, welcome. And when you start telling your story, I’m going to start with. Thank you. Hi, I’m Byron Davies. I’m a founder of black Swan learning whose mission is to discover and develop impossibly powerful methods and software that enable people to learn as quickly reliably, persistently, and joyfully as possible.
After Korea career in software, R and D at Caltech, MIT, Stanford, big tech companies, and several startups. My children inspired me to become deeply interested in learning and learning technology. My first black Swan of learning was a language teacher, Michelle Thomas, who could teach a new language in three days.
Yes. Three days. This is of course it’s unknown to most people. It hasn’t been ignored by the educational establish. And a decade of research since I’ve discovered many more black swans of learning people who developed instructional methods that far exceed standard practice. Another example is [00:52:00] Siegfried Engelmann who designed methods for teaching children’s reading and arithmetic in the largest government funded educational experiment ever $700 million in 19 $70, his methods beat standard practice and 20 competitive methods by a mile.
But the government then refused to announce a winner. Sadly, these methods have had negligible impact on the real world of education. For example, in the U S 50% of kindergarteners spend four years not learning to read. Similarly, half of middle school students spend several years not learning algebra and generations of high school students who spent four years not learning a second line.
To begin to counteract this. Our first product is an online reading tutor based largely on a black Swan instructional method developed over the past 25 years by my co-founder Judy Ramirez. Our initial target market is the parents of two year old children. Let me know if you want your two year old to learn to read before they’re three [00:53:00] that’s Byron had black swanning, black Swan learning.com.
Thank you, firing. That was great. And it’s good to hear your story again. You have a minute and a few seconds left. So one thing I’d say is, um, you came out of the gate at a very fast pace, and clearly you have time to tell the exact same story you just told at a little bit slower, more comfortable pace, so you don’t need to rush to fit it all in plenty of time to cover everything.
But I thought you did a really, uh, a very good job of introducing and making a much more. What, um, black Swan is today, Sharon, what?
Oh, sorry. Um, yes, I do remember your story Byron. And I see you, I think you adjusted your logo. Did you
buy glasses on this one? [00:54:00] Yeah. Um, so yeah. Um, so one of the comments, um, I would, or one of the suggestions I would offer is when you bring up the idea of the black Swan, that might not be. Um, it might not be something someone is familiar with, so there could be some help in trying to communicate what that blacks one means.
Um, and so I could take my pickup my other minute. Well, you don’t really want to go into like, you know, the logistics of it’s very specific to being a black Swan, but you want to make the connection between, you know, the idea and I believe, um, from the other time you were in one of our rooms, I think it was the idea basically that a black Swan is very rare and unusual.
Is that correct? Right. In fact, it’s so, so unusual that people don’t believe it exists. Exactly. So that’s exactly, that is the beautiful little hook that you could have at the [00:55:00] very, very beginning. Black swans are so beautiful and unusual people don’t even know they exist. Can you imagine if your two year old could read at a kindergarten level?
Like, there you go. There’s your hook and there’s your lead in. And then you can go and start to unfold, specifics of your, um, in as necessary. Um, and you know, it takes you from the idea of what blacks want is, and then what you offer and then can take you all the way through the process. Even if you’re, I know you kind of use the call to action at the end, but you could sort of wrap around that call to action by giving, uh, as something that’s so unusual that you don’t expect it’s going to happen.
And then at the very end, you know, would you like to sign up your child today, or maybe not that direct, but you know, that.
Thank you for that, Byron. [00:56:00] Thank you, Sharon. So we have time for, for our last storyteller tonight and again, sorry for those who didn’t make it up on stage tonight. Feel free to back channel, um, Sharon, Olivia, or myself, let us know that you did not make it on stage tonight and then next week, if you come, we’ll be sure to bring you up right away with that.
Let’s go to nor nor when you start speaking, I’ll start your timer.
Hi everyone. Um, my name is Nora today. I’m founder and CEO of a digital health company. Uh, I started, uh, this latest startup last year. Um, We have a market traction of around over a hundred thousand market traction. And now we’re doing early adopters, mainly in Hawaii. We are Hawaiian based company. So the story of this is three years ago.[00:57:00]
Um, I was flying in the Alps in the French Swiss Alps. I’m a red bull paraglider athlete, and I crashed into a house at, uh, lake Annecy, which is in the French side of the Arabs. And, uh, luckily I go to the hospital right away and I’m not handicapped for the rest of my life. I’m back running and fighting.
And now I’m in Spain. I had the great flight today with my friends, uh, at the same time. Um, my friend, John in Hawaii had similar accident in this sport and he’s handicapped for rest of his life. It’s, uh, same injury, very different outcome, mainly because. I was in France and he was in Hawaii and access to care is critical, especially when you’re in urgent and you need to see a specialist.
Um, so I dictated my life when I had that accident. [00:58:00] Well, when I had the accident and it wasn’t the ground, I’m like, this is game over and this is a real story. It was a deal I made with life that I’m going to dedicate my life to help all people with health access to care. Um, I was parked in California, medics, and they sold that healthcare company to quest for 168 million.
So I, I know what it takes to build a startup and team and technology. I come from technology background. So that’s. How the story of my accident and my sport led for me to focus a shift, being a programmer, working remote, which is awesome life, but change that to kind of homeless, building a team, putting his money into other people’s salary and running a low rate to build the dream, the passion he has and the deal he made his life.
So [00:59:00] that’s me. Um, now we are 11 members and again, we have a hundred thousand dollars. Plus with market traction, university of Hawaii is probably our biggest client soon. And my call to action is I need, I raised over 150,000 so far, and I need a bit more money to convert this market traction and sales and ACI.
I have five seconds. So thank you so much, Don. Good job. You are watching the clock. You were exactly right. When you said five seconds were left, there is your five seconds. So, um, good job.
Well, thank you for sharing your story with us. And, um, you know, w we’re happy that you were safe. Um, unfortunately your friend didn’t have the same outcome as you, um, which is, you know, our heart goes out to him as well, but, [01:00:00] um, so comments for you. I think that would be helpful as I actually was running my own little clock and I thought your story started about 30 seconds in.
So when you listen back on the replay, maybe take a look and see, um, a lot of times when, when people come up and tell a story, um, they start with a lot of the very specific general details about who they are and what they do. And those. Put inside the story, um, and made to make a connection because ultimately every story that we tell, we want to make a connection with the people that are listening to that story.
And so, um, using those details and weaving them into the story is going to be more helpful to you. I think then, you know, taking part of your time to, to tell specifics, um, also I thought that you had, you know, this compelling sort of segue between what happened to you and what happened to your friend and [01:01:00] how you made this decision.
Uh, you know, this, um, don’t want to put words in your mouth, but like pact with God or who whomever you believe, um, to take on this access to care, uh, Your sort of life mission, and therefore you’re taking that and moving forward from there. So I think that’s a very compelling story. And if you use that story, um, people definitely will connect with it because people have had experiences in their lives.
Obviously, again, we’re going back to the sort of head shaking idea, but when someone has an experience, you know, they may have had a terrible accident or may know someone of had had a car accident or who had a health scare or something like that. And if people can, can make that connection, if it resonates with them, that your personal experience can be a universal experience to them, it’s certainly helpful.
And it can help you to build rapport with them. And when you build [01:02:00] rapport, then obviously you’re getting buy-in. Um, and the other comment that I had was about using numbers sometimes, um, we feel like we need to. Bolster our story with numbers. And I always just caution people to only use the numbers that they think are going to be that are going to resonate with people or that are going to be important for them to know.
So if you’re looking to tell your story to investors, you might want to weave that in towards the end about, um, you know, number of users or whatever it is, um, in, in laying out the framework for the call to action, if that makes any sense. So you’re basically saying like, you know, we’ve done this, we’ve gotten to here and we need to get to there, and this is how we’re going to get to there.
And that there is coming from someone else giving us an influx of cash or helping us build the [01:03:00] market or build our platform or whatever it is. I hope that makes sense.
Yes, it does. Thanks. Thanks. Thanks. Olivia. Did you have any thoughts? Um, nothing that I can add on top of Sharon’s feedback, I was just going to say that I love listening to people’s whys and, and the behind the scenes. And I just, that I thank you for sharing your story and letting us understand why you do what you do.
Yeah. I think I’m north. I agree with what Sharon and Olivia said. The one thing I might add too is I know you introduced your company, um, in the very beginning as Sharon noted, but then by the time you got to the story of your journey and what inspired you, the promise you made. To help others. I kind of lost sight of what the company actually does.
And I think after telling the [01:04:00] story very well about how the difference in your outcomes was because you had easy access to care, whereas your friend did not, it would have been a great moment to, to really explain at that point what your company is doing specifically, um, to solve that problem. It is how does your company make care more readily accessible?
You mentioned that that’s the goal of the company, but I don’t recall, um, getting an understanding of, of how you’re attacking that problem or how are you doing that? And I think that would have made it a whole story more impactful. If that meant. If I could add, um, something that maybe it will help you, we usually write brand statements, starting with what you do, why you do it and then how you do it.
So then it’s an easy structure for you to follow when you’re writing.
Yeah. Fantastic. Um, so yeah, because I’m pitching a lot of [01:05:00] investors and you usually lead with attraction that your startup has. Uh, that’s the only reason why I started with attraction. Um, otherwise I will just go with the accident story and the different outcome and how I’m cutting the wait time patient has to go through, uh, they see a specialists here in the U S it takes weeks, sometimes months, and Montas from the energy’s almost game over.
Um, so cutting that sort of on a wait time with, uh, this telehealth based on telehealth, um, but, uh, fantastic, fantastic to be here and next week, apply your feedback. Super. Thanks guys. Yeah. And do you remember that? Um, I know it comes up frequently, uh, in this room and another rooms I’ve been in, but remember that when we’re telling our story, we’re telling it from a personal standpoint and we’re also telling it [01:06:00] to another person, even if they’re investor, you know, there’s a lot of times we, like, we try to think of people as, um, the job they do, but ultimately they’re a person.
And the reason that you’re going to connect with them is going to be on a personal and emotional basis. And the reason that they’re going to invest in your company or their. Buy your product is really because you’ve made some sort of emotional connection with them, or you’ve made a transformational connection with them, not a transactional connection with them.
And so I always encourage people when they’re telling their story to really lean into the emotional bits, because, and I’m not talking about, you know, like we want full waterworks going on by the time they’re finished with their story. Um, but you know, you want them to feel something if they don’t feel something, they just walk away going.
Okay. Like that was an interesting story or, oh yeah. Okay. That happened to this person or, or maybe nothing. [01:07:00] Maybe they make no connection whatsoever. So I’m always. Try to find that emotional connection within your story and go ahead and use it to your advantage. Um, and I know that we’re at the top of the hour here, almost finishing up.
So I just wanted to say that, you know, if anybody, again, didn’t get to come up and would love to raise their hand and come up the next time. We’d love to see them see you here. Um, and if anything we’ve said is a value, please go ahead and follow us because we do run a couple of other rooms, um, and also would love to give feedback in other venues.
Um, but if you also follow us, you’ll get to see the other things that we’re doing around clubhouse. And so we’d love to, to see you in another room. Thank you Sharon. And thank you everyone who shared their story tonight. Um, this is Lee Ruth, your story on startup club. Um, this show is recorded and also we have our replays turned on, which is the awesome new [01:08:00] feature.
The clubhouse is added. So you can find the replays of this episode and listen again at startup club here in clubhouse, under the replays tab. And you can also go to startup.club, which is the website for startup club and find recordings of this show. And many other shows email@example.com, and you can join our mailing list, excuse me, to be kept informed of special events and other speakers of note who will be appearing here on start-up club.
So, thanks again. Thank you, Olivia. Thank you, Sharyn. Thank you everyone who shared your story? We hope that you will lead with your story with us again. Bye everyone.