Forbes online interview about story

Why Something You Loved as a Child is Your Key to Success Today

Forbes Online   3/12/2015 @ 8:56AM 5,808 views

William Aruda – Why something you loved as a child is your key to success today

William Arruda Contributor; I write about personal branding.

(Opinions expressed by Forbes Contributors are their own.)

Remember how riveted you were when your mother or father read you a bedtime story? Remember how much you looked forward to it?

Well, stories are powerful – and not just to five-year-olds.

We hear a lot about storytelling these days. Companies are hiring storytelling experts to help them engage customers. Leaders are bolstering their storytelling skills to engage their teams. Career-minded professionals are seeking out the ideal formula for building and delivering a powerful story. Yet effective storytelling requires a lot more than plugging content into a formula.

To truly understand the power of story and all its business applications, I reached out to one of the world’s leading experts in story, Lani Peterson.

Lani has been working in the field for two decades and brings her expertise as a psychologist to her story work with Fortune 100 companies, the homeless, prisoners, doctors, architects – the list goes surprisingly on. And although her work is vast and varied, her approach can yield solutions to many of the challenges facing individuals and companies today.

I asked Lani for some advice we could all use to become more impactful storytellers. Continue reading

When a Homeless Storyteller Came to Church

Tom Monahan 02.22.15Through my work with Public Voice at City Mission Society (, I have been privileged to join Boston’s clergy in their response to the homelessness crisis in Boston. Following the closing of the Long Island Bridge last October, Boston’s homeless lost access to 600 shelter beds and two important detox programs. Since then, Boston clergy have been meeting cross-denominationally to discuss and respond to the growing needs of Boston’s homeless citizens through this ruthless winter. The result is “Boston Warm” (

As one of Boston Warm’s initiatives, Public Voice has been providing story support and outreach to “guests” who have been utilizing the newly formed day shelters temporarily set up in the basements of two Boston churches. Through storytelling training, Public Voice has been supporting “guests” to tell their stories and share them with area congregations who have been generous with donations. The goal has been to put a human face on homelessness. For those who share their stories, it is a chance to be witnessed, heard and know that their stories matter.

To see the impact of a homeless storyteller on one congregation, please enjoy the following blog written by Reverend Phil LaBelle of the St. Mark’s Episcopal Church in Southborough, MA. You can go to: or continue to read below!

Continue reading

A Story Listener’s Credo

  • Story listening is an act of generosity; it calls for full presence and engagement.
  • Story listening is an act of trust; allowing another to guide you on the story of their journey may bring you deeper into your own.
  • Story listening is an act of growth; being open to new thoughts, feelings
  • Story listening is an act of courage; allowing yourself to be touched and changed by the words of another.
  • Story listening is an act of surrender which may involve a reversal in the power/privilege differential; accepting another as expert in their own
  • Story listening is an act of responsibility; being witness to another’s story is one of the most powerful and empowering actions you can be engaged in.
  • Story listening is an act of social justice; gaining insight, understanding and empathy, being moved to action.
  • Story listening is an act of love.