” All the data in the world won’t help you if you don’t have a clear understanding of the story you are telling.”
– Ty Montague
This recent post from the HBR once again highlights that you can survive without a story … but you may not be achieving the level of communication and persuasion that you want. There seems to be an inbuilt distrust in large swathes of the Australian IR landscape for talking up any of the right brained aspects of how your company presents itself at IR events. The prevailing logic (no pun intended) says that analysts, fund managers and press are immune to be swayed by anything other than ‘the facts’.
Well the numbers of a FYR for example are unarguably the numbers … after the CFO has had at them at least. But the story behind the numbers is very much up for grabs and to a variable degree able to be represented for better or worse reception to those audience members.
As Ty outlines in his article it is the power of a story that makes the difference between Nike and Reebok to consumers, but here at ireport we think that’s directly comparable to your company’s brand as well. If you are one of a dozen mid tier gold miners all jostling for attention and love from the market, what makes you different from your peers ?
If you are a listed retailer suffering the effects of low consumer confidence what is your story to the investment community on framing the results in the context that you believe is correct. What are your plans for coping with current conditions and what is the roadmap for the future as you see it.
Looking at a typical FYR PDF file as uploaded to the ASX, it seems to us that many of them are long and facts and figures, but very short on story.
Of course first you have to have a story (that’s your problem) … and then telling it in a compelling fashion is the flip side of the same coin (that’s where we come in)
Too often we see the same mistakes being made over and over from HYR to FYR to AGM year after year …. it’s easy to simply present the ‘facts’ instead of telling a story. Extremely dense, detailed complicated ‘documents’ (made in Powerpoint) which do little to help tell a simple compelling story.
Every interaction between you and your stakeholders is a chance to re-inforce the real story behind the data.
If you feel the same way, then let’s talk.