Stories Are Data With a Soul

Stephen Fells

Stephen Fells

I was recently on a business call, talking to someone I had never previously spoken to or met, and she surprised me by saying:

“I feel like I know you so well!”

She felt this way having viewed my Follr Website, my digital story. The comment made me think of ‘strategist, linguist and author’ Valeria Maltoni. Valerie designs service and product experiences to help businesses rediscover the value of promises and its effect on relationships and culture and she states:

“We connect with stories because they are about people and are rich with emotional data.”

I’ve often said that people connect with people and not businesses. This is especially true with women who network differently than men as highlighted in the book “Business Networking and Sex” co-written by my good friend Frank De Raffele.

Emotional NetworkingBased on deep data the book talks about how women network with stories, anecdotes and experiences, connecting on a personal level. Men on the other hand network using milestones and achievements and pick up lines. Interestingly the data also shows that despite the fact that women spend less time networking they are more successful at it.

Maltoni adds:

“Some necessary ingredients are the ability to empathize and the courage to be authentic.”

And so to this fantastic, funny, moving and inspirational Ted video from BrenĂ© Brown; “The Power of Vulnerability.” It may seem unconnected to Follr but it isn’t. Brown talks about the emotional side of connecting including the need to demonstrate courage, compassion and especially vulnerability. She also talks about being authentic, being real and letting ourselves to seen, deeply seen.

My favorite line is “stories are data with soul” which leads to questions. What is your story? What is your online story? Is it authentic? Most importantly, does it help people feel like they know you?