57: Paul Smith: The Stories Great Leaders Tell

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In this episode host Jim Karrh welcomes Paul Smith to the Manage Your Message Podcast.

Paul is one of the world’s leading experts in business storytelling—and author of three bestselling books: Lead with a Story, Sell with a Story, and Parenting with a Story. Paul has a new book, The 10 Stories Great Leaders Tell. He was named one of Inc. magazine’s Top 100 Leadership Speakers last year. Paul holds an MBA from the Wharton School, and he got into this whole storytelling thing following a twenty-year career at Procter & Gamble.

Jim speaks with Paul about a number of leadership topics—drawing from his new book as well as his previous work—including:

  • Paul’s rationale for selecting these ten types of stories (spoiler alert: the criteria included noticing the things executive clients most ask for, thinking through the stories most useful across functional disciplines, the most obvious areas for leaders to influence across an organization, and considering the stories that need not be changed very often)
  • The storytelling areas where leaders are most likely to already have a head start
  • Where to find stories within your organization, and how best to screen them
  • The characteristics of a good executive storyteller
  • The leadership conversations where stories most belong (and don’t)
  • Tips for crafting good stories


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