Discover more from Winning Strategy
Mastering the Art of Storytelling in Agile
Enhance Communication and Collaboration with the Homework for Life Framework
👋 Hey Friends
We've all been there - trying to explain a complex idea or concept to our team or stakeholders, and it just falls flat. It's frustrating, but don't worry - there's a solution!
Think about it - stories have been used for thousands of years to convey critical information, ideas, and lessons. They're engaging, relatable, and memorable. That's why, as leaders in the world of Agile, we need to be using stories in our day-to-day work.
I recently came across a book called "Storyworthy," and in that book, there's a daily reflection exercise that I believe could change the way you approach your work. It's called Homework for Life, and the idea is simple.
At the end of each day, spend a few minutes thinking about "What's the most story-worthy thing that happened today?" Then, make a record of each of these moments - a spreadsheet, a Notion page, whatever works for you. Over time, you'll build up a collection of stories that you can use to explain complex concepts, ideas, and lessons.
I once worked with a Product Manager who was working with a cross-functional team to develop a new product feature.
The team was having trouble figuring out why to incorporate feedback from different stakeholders into the product roadmap.
The Product Manager realized that she needed a fresh approach to getting everyone on the same page.
So, she shared a story about a time when she was a child, and her family took a trip to an amusement park.
They all had different ideas about which ride to go on first - some wanted to go on the roller coaster, others wanted to go on the spinning tea cups, and some wanted to go on the carousel.
They were all pointing in different directions and couldn't agree on a plan.
But then the Product Manager's mother had a brilliant idea.
She suggested that they each take turns choosing a ride, with the understanding that everyone would have a say in the final itinerary. By the end of the day, they had all gone on each ride and had a blast.
The Product Manager ended her story by saying,
"Just like that day at the amusement park, we need to find a way to incorporate everyone's ideas and feedback into our product roadmap. We need to be flexible and make sure everyone has a say in the final plan."
The team was able to relate to the story and understood the importance of incorporating feedback from different stakeholders in a new and memorable way.
That's the power of storytelling in action!
Here's the thing - this practice, the Homework for Life, is about more than just collecting stories. It's also about reflecting on your day and keeping track of events that would otherwise slip away.
It encourages you to focus on memorable moments and see the world through a lens of stories.
So, I challenge you to join me in this journey and take on Homework for Life for the next 365 days (or more!).
Make your own spreadsheet or Notion page, and start reflecting on your day through the lens of stories. I promise you won't regret it.
Let me know if you're up for the challenge, and if you have any stories to share, I'd love to hear them!
📌 Things I loved this Week
This is still one of the most encouraging articles I've read in the past few years. It's funny, awesome and full of learning.
2 - Podcast - Cal Newport: Our Tumultuous Relationship with Work.
Cal made a great episode about how our ideas about work have changed over time. Especially talks about the pushback against 9–5 work. Highly recommended.
✍️ Quote of the Week
“There’s a secret that real writers know that wannabe writers don’t, and the secret is this: It’s not the writing part that’s hard. What’s hard is sitting down to write. What keeps us from sitting down is Resistance.”
“I share things I wish I knew in the starting years of my career in the corporate world"