I was talking with a friend the other day about their career aspirations. To their credit, they were REALLY clear about their bulls-eye, what they are looking for and why, which is great. I am an advocate of casting one's net narrowly and specifically, something I call a "narrow net" strategy.
But one thing that I noticed as my friend was talking was how little of their peronal narrative was focused on the selfish goals of the company that would hire them.
This underscores a fairly common truth that many struggle with. We love to hear ourselves talk - especially about ourselves. This explains why most of us are great self advocates.
But, here's the rub. Other people are focused on THEIR aspirations and their narratives.
Hence, understanding this essential truth is often the difference between getting the:
- Girl (or Guy)
My advice then is this. Work backwards from the "selfish narrative" of your audience, be it prospective employer, customer, new hire, publicity target or love interest.
Ask yourself: what are the selfish narratives that speak to them most clearly, compellingly and why?
What kind of story can you tell that credibly expresses that that's you?
After all, empathy and understanding are not just about being good. They are also about getting the outcomes that you want.