BGBS 016: Barney Waters | KSWISS | CEOs Wear Sneakers

BGBS Episode 016: CEOs Wear Sneakers… Barney oversees all aspects of K-Swiss, the global sneaker brand, having taken over as President at the beginning of 2016 with a goal to bring the 50 year old brand back to prominence and profitability. Barney has driven fast change both internally and externally, and created a breakthrough brand […]

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BGBS 015: Maxine Clark | Build-A-Bear Workshop | Everyone Needs A Teddy Bear

Maxine Clark is the founder of Build-A-Bear Workshop & Chief Executive Officer of Clark-Fox Family Foundation. She’s made many impressions with her skills and abilities to have the vision of the consumer and her unique strategies when it comes to branding. While working her way up the chain in her career path, Maxine, at age 48, successfully managed to structure, build, and grow her billion-dollar company based on hugs and love… […]

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BGBS 007: Brian Smith | UGG | Living Joyously As a Tadpole

  What do goosebumps, surfing, Pink Floyd, and sheep have to do with building a billion-dollar brand? Well, for UGG boots, just about everything! You see them everywhere – the beach, mountains, cities – wherever there are chilly feet. The fashionable and functional UGG brand was founded by 70-year-old Brian Smith, who has a youthful […]

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What Do Your Business, Your Employees, and Your Customers Believe In? – Business Belief Statement

“Are you beige or are you someone or a company I can some of myself in? Is this for me?”

That is the first, subconscious question your customers and prospects are trying to answer in the moment it takes to draw in a breath.  It’s the question we all try to answer for just about everything in our lives.

The simple fact is that people across this globe want something to believe in. Brett Michaels was right about that for sure! Look at our thirst for sports in this country. We want, no we need to believe in something. The Detroit Lions (I’m afflicted), the UM Wolverines, and whatever your favorite team is. We need to be in a stadium of 70,000 other people who believe in what we believe. It inherently feels right — because it’s a basic human need… […]

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Am I Telling a Narrative or a Business Story?

A common mistake is to assume everything is a story.  A story is a series of episodic, influential, connected events that changes a person’s life.  More simply put, a story is a journey.  And a journey has conflict and energy and obstacles and stakes and things that create a struggle between the dynamic positive and negative changes of life!

We will break down this definition in a later post but let’s assume for the sake of our discussion here this definition is in deed accurate. The key point to understand here is that a story revolves around change. Positive change and negative change. If there’s no change, there’s no story. […]

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Top 13 Books for Business Storytelling

“What are the best books on storytelling for my business?” 

OR

“I’m discovering how powerful storytelling can be for my business, but I want to learn more. What books should I read?”

I’ve been hearing these questions more and more.  The challenge with recommending books always comes back to a question of my own, “What do you want to know about story? The science, the structure, what stories to tell, how to tell a great story, how to use them in your business, etc?”  The study and practice of story is a science, art, craft, and passion. Just like if I asked my favorite musician to recommend the best books on music, I’m sure they’d have a list of their own questions and a laundry list of books to recommend. […]

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I Don’t Believe in Story Formulas & Neither Should You

Look, there are a lot of people running around talking about story and story formulas.  They reference the hero’s journey and promise a formula to make it as easy as filling out a Mad-Libs book.  I see the ads everyday on Facebook or in my inbox: “Follow this 5 step formula and you’ll be an amazing storyteller!”  Sound remotely familiar?

Sorry, but it’s not happening.  I don’t believe in story formulas and neither should you.

A formula – is something that gets a guaranteed result every time.  

And I hate to be the one to say it, but in storytelling there is no such thing as a formula. […]

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