To Tell a Story…

Who invests in stories any more?

Anthropologically, stories are very important to us as being the human animal we are the only species which possess the ability to communicate complex social concepts from generation to generation.  As while the greater animal kingdom provides mechanical means to transmit stories say in the way of the ant which secrete pheromones to pass information or the dance of the bee.  The message is not embedded with emotion and neither is it passed via generations building a knowledge base for each proceeding generation to leverage verses relearning.

As this is a key aspect, the ability to not need to re-learn critical pieces of information, as for example just think if man had to keep (generation over generation) relearning to create fire as well as its value?  Instead, the next generation can be “taught” the rote fact and focus the extra time on creating improvements and embellishing upon the prior learning’s again passing these along via story.

In these stories, we also interweave “emotions” which assist in embedding the “rote” learning by tickling our fancy if you will as when we bridge the world of non-fiction with that of fiction we develop a powerful duel hemispherical combination of synaptic significance.  However the point here isn’t so much the importance of the art of storytelling, however the way the telling of a story is changing in our modern digitally driven world.

As we forgo the printed media of the past for our new fangled digital gadgets with all their bells and whistles are we forgetting the “story”?  As you see every day venture capitalists doling out money for tech start ups which have no clue how to make money on a repetitive basis.  Yet how many invest in the art of storytelling, as if anything this appears to be heading backwards as the common man enters the story telling world the “value” of the word is changing drastically in fact one could say it’s in a economic free fall with no bottom in sight.

While in a way this is a good thing as the old machine limited the message and Marshall McLuhan said so insightfully some five decades ago, “The Medium is the Message” meaning you can say what you want however it will still be shaped by the medium in which its delivered to the consumer.  As radio with its medium limited only audio words, left the individuals mind to paint its own picture, while television on the other hand robbed us of that individual enjoyment by providing us with not only the word but also force feeding us a common set of images.

Now with the Internet we have the printed word as in the book, the spoken word as in the radio and the moving pictures as in TV, all like with the ability to actively change these at our will taking another truth (story) and reshaping to our remix if you will.  However again who is investing in the story itself as the old word Media Barons implode fewer seem to be seeking the formal world as way of life as instead it seems to be, becoming craft of a second class nature and while digitally we may be all dressed up, we assuredly be lacking some place to go unless things change…


About Joseph Campbell

As a strong believer in the fact that "people work for people", it has been a life driver to better to understand the complexities of the various aspects which drive efficiency within this axiom, especially the concepts of leadership. Supporting this, I have been fortunate enough to having experienced this as leader on a global basis over the last decade and half. During this time it has been clear there are three core drivers being Life, Leadership and Economics.
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