USE CASE STORIES

 

EXPORT DIRECTOR

Andrzej Kolasa
Multiserwis Sp. z o.o.

I tend to be a realist in my daily life, so I always look for opportunities for using the knowledge I have learned. Just a few days after the workshop, I conducted a couple of interviews where I used the Story Seekers® approach. But what’s most important to me is to apply the knowledge in communication with my teenage son. Even though it will take some time to see the effects, I believe that building trust through stories will bring me a lot of value.

CEO

Paweł Piotrowski
Tryumf.com.pl

Mike Bosworth’s workshop was one of the best workshops I have ever attended. What I found particularly valuable was that we spent most of the time on practical exercises and we could learn in action. There were plenty of interactions rather than one-way communication like during most of workshops. That helped the group integrate fast, which proved yet another value. I met interesting people and I could hear how they do business. As regards to using the methodology in my company, I can see at least several directions. Building trust in telemarketing is just one of example. As we have been focusing a lot on selling recently, I think we are going to use storytelling to build cutting-edge, effective marketing. We have lots of new ideas after the workshop.

GENERAL MANAGER

Anna Makowicz
Green Luck, Magill

I believe developing interpersonal skills is very important and it becomes our duty when related to the development of our business. The workshop with Mike Bosworth showed me that the skill of telling stories is not so “soft” and it requires hard rules. I’ve always thought I was too weak, too delicate, and too open… and now I know that these are my strengths.
The workshop was like a spa treatment for my inner self. It gave me a lot of energy. I think I will soon use Mike’s techniques in my daily work, in building sales techniques, in PR and CSR activities, and also in daily conversations with my family.

CEO

Jonathan Gallagher
Coastal Payroll Services
San Diego, CA

I wanted to give you some feedback as to how Storyseekers as benefited me and my business. As you know, I started my business from scratch with my business partner. The first year of our business was more challenging than I could have ever anticipated. Above and beyond the challenges of growing a business, starting with zero clients, my wife became pregnant 1 month after the start of the business and she lost her pharmaceutical sales job 1 month before her due date. To make matters worse, her employer took the company car and our health insurance. I hadn’t taken home a paycheck yet. You can only imagine how petrified and motivated I became towards the end of our first year in business. 
What I thought was terrible luck and misfortune, turned out to be a blessing and amazing story to those with whom I came in contact. Prior to the Story Seekers Workshop, I had begun to leave the details of the challenges that we faced out of my presentations and stories. For a while I noticed that my conversions were going down and I felt less connected to my audience. After attending Story Seekers, I never left out the challenging details of that first year again. Those details create drama and help build connection and empathy with my audience. They make me more “human” and in some ways more trustworthy and admirable. We had the largest growth of our company last year and I feel a revival in the culture of our company. I enjoyed every minute of the workshop and I am a better person as a result. 
PS, I am a much better husband and listener. Life is great at home! Thanks Mike!

COLLEGE BUSINESS PROFESSOR

John

The participants in our workshops shared with me an unexpected benefit of our StorySeekers™ training – breaking down the silo walls existing within their organizations.
This “silo-busting” capability came through one of the pre-workshop homework assignments where each participant must come to Story Seekers prepared to share a personal story about how an event or situation caused them to change or reframe their values.
In our first breakout exercise, each person shared his or her story within a small group. During this exercise, participants hear amazing about overcoming personal adversity, dysfunctional families and other pivotal events in their lives.
“What we discovered during the feedback session after the exercise is, when asked, people stated the stories shared helped them have a higher level of appreciation and empathy towards people they already know. They were better connected as humans!
“I’ve been amazed how people working together in the same company for many years have no clue about the problems or personal challenges others are experiencing until going through our training.
“How do you measure the value of this experience?
“I’m not sure. What is the value of human connection in a business organization?
“It is difficult to scrutinize to an ROI analysis.
“All we can suggest is that human connection is real and that you will feel and see a difference in your team’s performance.”

PRODUCT MARKETING DIRECTOR

I want to thank you and the workshop coaches for an amazing session last week. I went into it with an open mind, and as a result, I gained a tremendous amount of knowledge –
And confidence. I learned that every story – and every relationship – needs a hero, and that heroes are all around us every day if we look for them. And, you were right about the art of storytelling working with tweens/teens; I used it this weekend to diffuse a situation with my 11-year-old son!
I look forward to working with you and your team again. Thank you for taking the time to help me be a better professional, friend and mother! Have a great week.

“I attended the story leader workshop and it was a journey of self-discovery and understanding how to truly build relationships with honesty and vulnerability. Showing our humanity and relating to others through stories allows the listener to go on a journey with us and then relate at a core level. Stories allow for openness and they are a way to remember others in a fun, compassionate and deeper level.
 
“I believe that all professions benefit through storytelling. They are cornerstones of who we are, as our experiences are our stories. This was a wonderful experiential workshop.”

ENTREPRENEUR

Joyce


As the Director of Dealer Sales at AMSOIL INC, I can tell you that my experience with Story Seekers has been absolutely eye-opening from a number of perspectives. Allow me to tell my short story.
I have been in sales for over 25 years. I started employment at AMSOIL as a regional sales manager for the Southwestern US and was promoted to Director of Dealer Sales in September of 2008. My main role and objective is to help AMSOIL Dealers grow their business by providing sales tools, motivation, inspiration and general sales advice. I have never had much of a problem engaging in conversation with people that I don’t know, and like many others in sales, it was attributed to my “gift of gab.” But there were some problems when it came to connecting with many AMSOIL Dealers. Dealers didn’t trust me right away. AMSOIL Dealers are independent, self-employed people who wondered many things about my position within AMSOIL and were leery of me and my objectives when providing them with advice. In the beginning of my tenure at AMSOIL, Dealers didn’t want to believe that I was there to simply help them grow their business and therefore the trust factor was very low. One of the actions I took to change this was to attend a Story Seekers workshop. From this point, I convinced AMSOIL INC to bring Mike Bosworth in for a private 2 1/2 day workshop that involved over 20 co-workers. This workshop really made me aware and confirmed some things that I had done as a salesperson, but the challenge was that I had done them unconsciously. I have always been a storyteller, even in sales, but now I started to understand why engaging and connecting with people in conversation was not a problem for me. It was my ability to connect through the use of story. The great thing about being conscious of this ability to connect is that I now can use it on demand and I can teach it to others! That is what I am doing now in my conversations with AMSOIL Dealers. Helping them learn how to connect with their customers so they reach a level of trust much, much quicker. I have been able to construct the AMSOIL story so that it is concise, yet very compelling and I have taught it AMSOIL Dealers. All of this helps AMSOIL Dealers increase sales and grow their business. Having a story board to follow when building a story, which is what I learned from Story Seekers, has been very valuable and is another great tool for AMSOIL Dealers. The learned listening skills also acquired have been extremely valuable not only in my professional life, but in my personal life as well. In fact, the listening skills I have learned through the Story Seekers workshop are arguably the most valuable skills learned . 
I have always been very proud of being in the sales profession. I think it is a very honorable profession and can’t think of a better career to have than to help others be better sales professionals, so they can help others with their products and services and reach the goals they have set for themselves.

DIRECTOR OF SALES

Rob Stenberg
AMSOIL INC


“I’m a 23 year old recent college graduate, now in an entry level software sales position. I had met Mike through a mentor while in school, learned about his course, and signed up for one of his public workshops.
 
“It was a life changing experience. It was amazing to watch our group go from being complete strangers to trusted friends in the course of 2.5 days, all from sharing stories with each other.  The biggest learning experience for me was how well we can make connections with people when we show vulnerability. It was something I had read in his book, but seeing it happen in front of my eyes was totally different. What I learned has not only has helped at work, but in my personal life as well. I would recommend it to anyone.”

Software sales

Nick


At the beginning of the workshop with Mike Bosworth I was asked about my expectations. I wrote my own question: “Why do we need to meet again every 3 or 4 years to talk about the same issues that everyone had identified and agreed upon, but no one respects?” Thanks to discussing and applying the Story Seekers® storyboard methodology, I understood that the client is not the key element in my organization for all employees which makes them use different priorities and values in their decision making. Even though I don’t know how to solve this problem yet, the next step will be to answer the question if we have a common priority – this should help us reduce the frequency of such training sessions.

Business unit director

Jarosław Ślusarski
VPS Jabil


I’ve used storytelling techniques in my work for the past three years, but this was the first opportunity to meet the author of the Story Seeking® methodology. So far I’ve been doing it only intuitively. What I lacked was structured knowledge of Story Seeking®. During the inspiring workshop, I had a chance to observe how incredibly fast you can build trust thanks to Mike’s methodology, which is extremely important in my day-to-day work. I will undoubtedly use the Story Seekers® tools in daily work situations, both to inspire and build committed teams, and to work with clients at various levels (technicians, salesmen). The positive message coming from this form of dialogue reduces stress and encourages the other person to reflect, which is, in my opinion, key to effective performance.

managing director

Mariusz Megier
ORGADATA East Europe

Sp. z o.o.


Mike Bosworth’s workshop was one of the best training seminars I’ve ever attended and an invaluable experience to me. Presented materials, working in groups, and exchanging experiences with other participants – all this will enable me to continue to use the Story Seekers® tools in practice. During the workshop I could test and have a firsthand experience proving the effectiveness of the methodology. Now it’s time to put it in practice every day.

board member

Dawid Wrona
Representative in the DOM 3000 project
Dom Development S.A.


“I first met Mike 25 years ago when he needed some professional business advice for what was then a relatively new business, and we’ve worked together every since, so I’m happy to share a few thoughts.
“If you’ve seen the recent “Lincoln” movie or read any biographies about him, you probably know that one of his legendary strengths was his ability to tell engaging stories that made it easier for him to persuade people to consider his beliefs and positions. Flash-forward to modern times and think about the movies that have affected you and stayed with you over the years; they probably all have in common the ability to tell a great story well.  Apparently there is something about a good story told well that opens people up to listening.  Mike has studied the brain science behind this phenomenon and has cross-matched it with the ability of successful salespeople to naturally communicate with their prospects to figure out how we can all communicate better by learning to tell better stories about who we are and who we work for/with, as well as how to engage the person on the other side to tell us their stories. Committing to a 2+ day program originally seemed like a pretty high hurdle to overcome, but it was intriguing, stimulating and entertaining; plus it went fast and was in the final analysis very worthwhile.  Even after almost 35 years in business, I learned quite a few new tools that I have been able to immediately put to use. ”

IP ATTORNEY

Dave


Does StorySeekers work? For any CEO, that’s the core question since many of us have been exposed to NEED-SAT Selling, Zig Zigler, Sales by Objectives, etc. Let me explain how I am using StorySeekers here at GPM, Inc.
Our 38 year old company sells large slurry pumps to the mining, paper, power generation, and heavy industry where process water is used. These pumps range from 15HP up to 500 HP and are by in large, a Cap X investment for the buyer. We have stiff competition from many companies but our unique point of difference is our submersible motor technology whereby you can put our pumps right into the slurry pits and they will pump 70% solid solutions. Some pumps have been on the job running 7-24 for over 15 years? Amazing. Some pumps run in such abrasive conditions, that the expected pump life was 6 months and our pumps have been running non-stop for two years! Again Amazing. 
What’s really amazing is that we were not telling anybody. Like most of our competitors, we were focused on features, benefits, technical specifications and pricing but we were not telling our stories. In short… we were executing well on two out of the three interconnecting circles required to create trust with a customer. What was missing? You know the answer… “Connectedness”. Starting with the basics, we’re putting together a series of stories as case studies. I am visiting with all our sales people and asking for them to give us the best of the best of personal stories of how they have helped a customer solve a problem or reduce their costs. These will also be published but more importantly, I want these stories learned by our 16 sales people so that they are equipped to not only talk about their own personal stories, but to be able to visit with customers about success stories in applications. And, of course, training our people to tend the stories of our customers, but building strong personal relationships with new customers as well as reinforcing relationships with new stories for our long-term customers.
Will it work? It already has. We’re putting together and winning new quotes with this technique. It’s simple, honest, compelling and effective. I fully expect to increase our revenues from $20.5 million ending in 2013 to $27.0 million by year end.

CEO

Rob West
GPM, Inc.


The form of the workshop, opportunity to work with people outside my organization, and the great atmosphere made it a great experience for me and I would recommend the workshop to anyone. I’m going to use the Story Seekers® tools in my work as a leader, especially to build trust, in coaching and leading teams. I understood the great significance of empathy and ability to listen in building engagement. The storytelling methodology is a way to deal with sensitive situations, and adding the human dimension to an organization is an excellent idea to unlock team potential in hard times.

sales center manager

Witold Kwak
Coca Cola HBC Polska Sp. z o.o.


During the workshop with Mike Bosworth, organized by ICAN Institute, I managed to do several incredible things. I gained authentic, vital knowledge about building effective relationships by telling stories (we, Poles, we don’t have a natural talent for structured storytelling, sharing experience and opening up – the skills that we should learn). Moreover, we managed to build open and honest relationships in a group of total strangers, which is extremely valuable and rare. I generated high levels of engagement and got something extremely practical. I will use the knowledge and experience gained at the workshop in many aspects of my life, not only work. I see the workshop as a new, unexpected opening to unconventional forms of education on the part of ICAN.

CEO

Robert Kamiński
President Fitness Association


Last night I tended my wife’s stories on how her week went then told her about our sales training. She said this has been the best sales training I’ve received thus far and pointed out what I was like following previous sales training courses. After I did Spin Selling she said I never listened and only focused on the next thing I wanted to say (often a question). After Challenger (initially done in 2012) she said I came off too strong and failed to understand her side as I was only focused on mine. After I worked for someone who preached the old ABCs of selling, she said I became impatient and always wanted to quickly conclude discussions. After this training she said I truly listened/understood what she was saying and was thrilled the course addressed a lot of bad habits I had picked up over the years. As a side note, the open-forum format was incredibly helpful in addressing these bad habits because we shared many of the same problems.
Thank you for helping arrange this course. It’s one thing to read a book about new and helpful concepts, it’s another to have it contextualized and practiced in a setting like what we had. Since this course is already making a positive impact on my personal life, I can’t wait to see how it affects my professional one.

sales manager

Herrick Griffin
Sonus


“I attended his seminar on Story Seekers last month and it has changed the way I do business!  I had always been a “listener”, but now with Mike’s seminar, I have a framework to help draw out my client’s story and truly try and understand (without thinking about my own thoughts or hopes!) and focus on them!  I also have answers to the questions that people always ask me such as “Your in real estate?”  or “How did you get into real estate?” or “What’s going on with the market?
 
“During and after Mike’s seminar, I developed stories (with his framework) to answer these questions and now, I don’t flinch when people ask me these questions!  I came up with 30, 60 and 90 sec versions.  Honestly, the best part for me was the story seeking part where I learned to hone my skills as a story seeker and it has been truly an awesome addition to my business and my personal life!
 
“I hope you attend the seminar!  It was truly moving!”

REAL ESTATE BROKER

Stacy