Last week, I sat in my new office space in NE Minneapolis around at the room full of new people I’d yet to meet. I wondered to myself how I might change-up the experience meeting new people. Change-up the story I typically share. That day, I introduced myself with a different story meaning – used a new setting, even changed the villains in my storyline. The result was a new experience – one that paved the way to another story shared from my new associate. The experience we created together connected us in a more significant way than before we had the interaction.
The Experience Economy
The “Experience Economy,” is something that was first written about as far back as 1982 – before the millennial generation was even born. The idea of experience as an economy was expanded on in 1998 shortly after the first millennials were being born in the Harvard Business Review called Welcome to the Experience Economy by Pine and Gilmore and was defined as providing a commodity – different from goods or services. Now in 2015, some of the first millennials are making money and are the first creatures to spend more of their income on experiences than products.
Why is the Experience Economy important to your life?
The way I like to view every interaction – from informal meetings to formal speaking engagements — is a shared experience in story. In this way, we view coffee and succession planning meetings, lunches and weekly EOS meetings, as building and sharing a story experience together. The story experience we build into every interaction connects us closer to our co-workers, customers, clients, and communities by making memories that can be reflected on afterwards – moving us toward new insights and maybe even toward transformation.
Last week we looked at how to invite your listeners to a story. Today, we focus on how to build the story experience itself. How do we make all of our interactions a commodity in “Story Experience?”
The way we move to sharing Story Experiences, is by being purposeful and thoughtful about the stories we build. The story experience can’t be built haphazardly – even while some of the best story experiences happen spontaneously – prior thought into how we build and structure meaning into these spontaneous interactions has already happened.
Gretchen Rubin, author of Better Than Before: Mastering the Habits of our Everyday Lives writes, “Habits are the invisible architecture of everyday life.” She challenges us to be thoughtful and purposeful about the structure we build into our everyday. As she points out, the single repetition of our daily behaviors become the sum of our lives. In the same way, I challenge us to be purposeful about building and sharing story. The singular stories we share on a daily basis become the sum of our shared lifetime experiences.
Are your Story Experiences a sought after? What types of Story Experiences do you want to be known for sharing? How will the consumption of Story Experiences you personally build into your life increase your revenue?