In the early days of Anecdote we believed the key purpose of story-listening was to gain insight.
Shawn wrote in a 2005 blog; "Listening to stories is one of the best ways to understand what is happening in a complex and dynamic situation ... Stories clarify the emerging patterns upon which effective interventions can be formulated."
What we have now come to realise is that, although stories do provide huge amounts of insight, the more important outcome of undertaking story-listening is that working with stories inspires action.
We see it time and time again. The energy changes in the room when people are immersed in stories from their own organisation.
The move from being spectators on the terraces to players on the pitch.
Our biggest challenge is sometimes stopping them leaving the workshop there and then to go and make some changes back in the office!
Credit: Anecdote Newsletter
This was how Anecdote opened their February 2012 newsletter. It resonated with me as I find the same with my Knowledge Cafes. After all, the KCafe is as mcuh a platform for telling stories as it is anything else. Yes insight and improved understanding is important but being inspired to action more so.
Its all keeps coming back to that favourite quotation of mine
The mind is not a vessel to be filled but a fire to be kindled.