Memory is a fragile thing. In fact, neurologists are still figuring out how the brain and memory work. They have a good idea, but are not 100% about it.
Generally, when we remember something we are creating copy of what we think we remember, not accessing a file like on a computer that’s been in storage for a while. That copy presents itself as reality and often is different is some way.
One way to connect your message to others is through telling a story.
The reason why stories are powerful is that they can more effectively connect with an audience and evoke an emotional response, which in turns strengthens the likelihood of something being remembered.
I can’t remember what I had for dinner three nights ago, but I can remember the high and low points of my life because I have an emotion connected to it.
If you want people to remember you, your idea, your product or service, work toward having them remember your story. The rest will take care of itself.
I showed my kids recently a 3.5″ floppy disk. They had never seen one before and didn’t know what it was or how it was used.
One day, kids will think we were weird for carrying around these mini computers with a slab of glass on the front of it that you have to touch with your fingers. My first cell phone was a bag phone that stayed in the car with a cord connected to it.
The world is constantly changing.
Businesses know this and they adapt or die (hello Blockbuster). The same is true for people. We must continually adapt to the changing world or risk being left behind.
We are hard-wired for two things: pleasure-seeking and pain avoidance.
We avoid pain when possible.
The problem is that growth happens in pain because we have to expend effort. This is why your muscles ache after a workout. This is why your brain is tired after studying. This is why you feel uncomfortable doing something you’ve never done before.
But, that temporary efforts leads to something better down the road. Somewhere where we are accomplishing our goals and achieving the best version of ourselves.
If you are a Star Trek fan, you know exactly who Capt. Kirk and Capt. Picard are and what they did in the Star Trek universe. I find a LARGE portion of my students nowadays have no idea who I’m talking about (sign I’m getting old or TikTok is winning the culture war over scifi).
Kirk was an aggressive leader.
He would jump right into the center of danger and go after the enemy. He was a brilliant tactician. He thought a few “moves” ahead and always managed to outmaneuver his opponents. He was brash and arrogant.
Picard was a measured leader.
He tried to avoid confrontations as much as possible. He took an ambassadors approach to dilemmas. He worked to get everyone involved in the decision-making process. He was paced and thoughtful in his approach.
Two different leadership styles. Both were captains of the Enterprise. Both were effective leaders.
Leadership comes in different shapes and sizes. What matters is how they treat their people and the outcomes they create.
What does art look like? What does love look like?
Like resume writing, leadership is both an art and a science.
I heard a colleague years ago remark that they did not see the merit in studying business and leadership. There is tremendous utility is studying both. Every organization has a business concept within it. Organizations, businesses, and people need leaders.
Leadership is a something that if I asked 1,000 people to tell me one word they associate with leadership, I’d get a large variety of words, with a few themes emerging.
When I ask students a word they associate with leadership, they say: strong, honest, powerful, integrity, empathy, and dozen of other traits.
When I ask you what does leadership look like, who is the first person that comes to mind? Why that person? What makes them a leader?