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Business of Story

May 21, 2017

What do you think is the most valuable survival tool in an arctic expedition? A nice winter coat? Snowshoes? Warm hat?

For a 900 mile trek through one of the most dangerous places on earth, over hidden crevasses, calving glaciers, and frozen landscapes, one of the most critical tools is the ability to communicate the right story.

Joining us on this edition of Business of Story is adventurer Robert Swan, the first man to journey across both the North and South Poles unaided.

His dream of traversing the ice caps began in his childhood, and when he was an adult, he was ready to go, but he couldn’t do it alone.

For the next seven years, he worked hard to find sponsorship for this journey, and through the many rejections, he could learn from his mistakes and refine a compelling story to gain support.

Robert used these very same storytelling techniques to inspire his fellow arctic companions and survive the ice. Today, he is one of the leading experts in the field of sustainability leadership, bringing students from around the world to visit the ice caps.

Decades of experience has taught Robert the necessity of storytelling in leadership roles. To be able to craft a narrative, convince people of their own personal gain, and trust in those around you is the mark of a good leader.

In This Show, You’ll Learn:

  • How great leaders use storytelling to rally support
  • Importance of credibility in your narrative
  • Telling your story through someone else’s point of view

Key Quotes

  • “Trust yourself. If you don’t trust you, who is going to trust you?” – Robert Swan
  • “Every time I was told no, I listen to why these people told me no.” – Robert Swan
  • “Trust will inspire people more than anything.” – Robert Swan
  • ‘You really connected with their legacy, they didn’t even realize they were part of these expeditions.” – Park Howell

Mentioned in this episode