Friday, July 20, 2007

Storytelling in the Workplace

I'm reading "Restorying a Culture of Ethical and Spiritual Values: A Role for Leader Storytelling" in the Journal of Business Ethics. I've talked about what stories we hear and tell in the workplace before, but not read anything scholarly on the issue. Stories in the workplace are an avenue to understanding workplace ethics and workplace culture. I pay attention to workplace stories. They are extremely important. Here's a brief excerpt (without references sentence by sentence) from the article:

Organizational storytelling

It has been said that organizations are made up of many stories and competing story interpretations. The stories that are told in an organziation allow researchers and practitioners a way to understand and try to bring about change in an organizations's culture. It is not surprising then that much of the storytelling work in organization studies has direct links to the organizational culture literature. Specific applications of organizational storytelling that have been outlined in the literature include, among others, confirming shared experiences, generation commitment, renewing a sense of purpose, co-creating a vision for the organization, engaging emotions, driving strategic change, and faciliating sense-making.
The article continues to suggest that inspirational leaders not only communicate stories, but actually embody them.