“The creative person basically has two kinds of jobs: One is the sexy, creative kind. Second is the kind that pays the bills. Sometimes the task in hand covers both bases, but not often.” — Hugh MacLeod in “How to be Creative”
The quote above, also known as Hugh MacLeod’s Sex and Cash theory, says it clearly: you need a job to earn your living, and “being creative” is not always on top of the list of an employer’s expectations. The ideal occupation, of course, is when you can follow your passion, leave your mark on the world and at the same time make money. But, there’s some good news for the creative among us…
A study carried out by the French ManpowerGroup has identified three emerging job profiles for the future: the Protector, the Optimizer and the Storyteller.
The latter one, the Storyteller, is described as a “craftsman of engagement”. He or she gives meaning to (or renews) the company’s engagement in times of crisis and communicates with all stakeholders through dialog and social media. In today’s organizations we often find these creative people in marketing and communications functions such as “Content Marketer”, “Digital Brand Manager” or “Community Manager” and in business supporting roles, including “Innovation Valorization Managers”, “Business Evangelists” and “Cultural Engineering Consultants”.
Although I have met only very few people with “Corporate Storyteller” on their business card (some companies have seen the light, and e.g. SAP hired “Chief Storyteller” Julie Roehm about 20 months ago), storytelling is becoming the new gospel of business. And those creatives who can create compelling stories, get their message across, and inspire audiences’ passion will stand out in the new era of content and meaning.
Other articles about this topic that are worth reading:
- Hugh MacLeod’s “Sex & Cash” Theory (by Megan Power)
- What Audiences Want: Study Uncovers Possible Futures for Storytelling (by Kim Gaskins)
- This Will Be The #1 Business Skill Of The Next 5 Years (by Shane Snow)
- Why every company needs a chief evangelist (by Theo Priestley)
- CEO of SAP recruits a Chief Storyteller- why? (by Michael on InsightDemand)
- IMS NYC 2013 Keynote: Julie Roehm (by Jennifer Videtta — with video)
- How Behemoths like GE, Adobe, and SAP Tell Their Stories (by Alex Shipillo)
- The need to be authentic in your company’s storytelling (by Brandon Hoe)
- It’s the story, stupid (by me)