The June issue of Director magazine is out now. Editor Lysanne Currie previews what’s inside…
Back in 2008, I interviewed Paulo Coelho (pictured below) author of The Alchemist. He had just been made a United Nations Messenger of Peace. Asked how he saw his role, he talked about using culture, particularly “storytelling”, to reassemble people in a divided world.
He said: “If we still can understand the stories and legend of our neighbour, even if we don’t understand anything else, we will realise that we are not strangers, and we share a lot of values in common.”
Of course, Coelho was talking about storytelling as a way to bring peace, but I remember being surprised at the use of the word. Back then, it was most commonly associated with children.
Seven years later, storytelling and its close relation, content, are common business parlance and seen as essential for connecting both externally and internally.
Over the last few months, we’ve been thinking about this. We have talked to business leaders who tell a great story (remember the Innocent legend?) and to content experts who have helped everyone from FTSE chief executives to start-up entrepreneurs craft their story.
This month, on p54, Nick Scott looks at the science behind strategic storytelling – is it just a new buzzword or could it really make a difference to your bottom line? I hope you find it useful.
One man who understands the importance of great stories is this month’s cover star, UKTV chief executive Darren Childs. Three days before this issue went to print, his firm reported record results – audience share was up and operating profits had risen by nine per cent to £72.2m. Hear his views on how to marry commercial and creative streams on p28, and watch a clip from UKTV below.
One of the unique things about working for the IoD is that every day we meet a diverse range of business leaders and hear about their, sometimes hairy, journeys from start-up to current position.
I first had coffee with Curve co-owner Lyndsey Simpson three years ago and am delighted we’re now telling the tale of her Northamptonshire business – including how it recovered from losing two-thirds of its customers when Lehman collapsed in 2008. Read Curve’s story on p36 and do keep telling us yours.
I hope you enjoy the issue.