28 Sep Who’s your hero?
Teaching clients who aren’t always ready to learn
If everybody is the hero of his or her own story, who’s yours? And be careful. The right answer may not be the answer you want to give.
When we say everybody is the hero of his or her own story, what we mean is we all like to see the world through our own eyes with an understanding of what’s important to us. We see ourselves as the expert. With the best product. With the institutional memory of how that product was created and developed. How that product is going to change the world. We like to see ourselves as the hero saving the day.
But we’re wrong. You’re not the hero. You’re the guide.
But to succeed in any business where you’re selling a product or a service to customers, your own perspective can’t be the only one you pay attention to.
It can’t truly be trusted.
It cheats you and betrays you for its close proximity to you and your own emotions.
Frankly, it should never be the primary perspective.
Because, in business, you are NOT the hero of your own story.
It’s hard to hear and even harder to believe. But it’s true. And the quicker you come to understand it, the better off you’ll be.
Customer = Hero
Your customer is the hero of your business story. Your customer MUST be the hero of your story.
What are you?
You are their guide.
In classic western storytelling — the type of storytelling we understand best as human beings — every story has a character, a hero, who encounters a problem, a challenge, who meets a guide who teaches them a plan and calls him or her to act. In the end, the hero experiences success, avoiding failure that leads to a transformation in the hero. A “win” that transports the hero on to the next story.
When you’re telling your story, you need to refocus yourself to understand that YOU ARE NOT THE HERO. You… are the guide.
Most clients, when you take the time to explain this to them, get it, but their natural predilections almost always take over and lead them back to a “We’re the Hero” moment.
It takes time and persistence to lead them… to guide them to an understanding that the guide is the more important role. It make a bigger difference. It makes them more important than the hero will every understand.
Stick with it.
If you do it right. And they are the right client. They’ll eventually get it.
And you’ll feel like the hero.
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