I just discovered an interesting article on Jimmy Buffett, who by any measure is a skillful and wildly successful storyteller. Many songwriters are great storytellers, of course, but few have careers as enduring as Buffett’s.
Written by Karen Dietz, a colleague of mine based in San Diego, the article is based on an interview she conducted “years ago” when working for a national magazine. Describing Buffett’s diverse talents as visionary, businessman and airplane pilot, she elaborates on his top criteria for developing good stories:
- Spend most of your time listening to others
- Take time to develop interesting characters
- Remember that the objective is to paint pictures with your words
- Have fun!
In summary, Dietz says corporate storytelling can be challenging, but it’s easier if you follow Buffett’s advice. She says “the last piece of advice that Jimmy gave me…(was, ‘No matter what you do, just don’t forget to have fun with it. If you aren’t having fun, it makes for really long, boring days. And no one needs that.’ ”
The entire article is at http://tinyurl.com/77s5usb