“Rocket Science” Strategic Narrative Consulting
Raise the standards of your comms teams, improving how they engage with emotionality, dynamism and impact
“I’m grateful for the careful way you led me on my transformational journey—and for the new level of leadership you’ve helped me achieve.”
~ Matt Landau, CEO, VRMB
Introducing Strategic Narrative Consulting
In business, storytelling has moved beyond expressing a message with a beginning, middle and end. Today’s leadership storytelling must also include a “vibe” of authenticity, innovation and a perspective on the changing world that is expressed as much in words as in feeling. Strategic narrative consulting is a new way of approaching corporate communications to achieve a more significant impact on audiences, enabling the messaging to move as dynamically as the strategy.
Who We Help
- Executive Leaders
- Functional Leaders
- Entrepreneurs & Start-ups
- Thought Leaders
Our Approach to Strategic Narrative Consulting
One of the oldest ideas in storytelling is “form follows function.” It goes back more than 2,000 years to Aristotle—and probably further.
“Form follows function” tells us that a message is always more than it appears on the surface. In a world defined exclusively by form, a flag is just a bunch of colors and stripes, a logo is just a cute picture and everything a leader says can be understood at face value. When we expand our definition of communication to include function, and not just form, we can unearth a more sophisticated understanding of what’s being communicated.
In businesses, strategic messages are based on a bedrock of logic and data. They are also founded on emotional and relational dynamics like trust, perspective and belief. In the new world of business, these dynamics must be integrated in order to achieve the agility, purpose and engagement required for today’s operational goals.
Working at this level requires new skills; it also requires new mindsets and planning processes. Together, these can enable communications teams to break out of the old moulds, infusing their messaging with greater clarity, emotionality, dynamism and impact.
In our strategic narrative consulting practice, we help our clients bring these new functions into their forms. We work with functional teams and organizational leaders. Our work helps them:
- Raise the standard of their comms team, improving their ability to generate more effective and efficient “business storytelling”
- Reveal underlying obstacles to effective business storytelling (e.g. existing systems, legacy habits, biases and perspectives) and find innovative solutions to address these obstacles
- Integrate new foundations, frameworks, systems, etc that will allow the team to sustain the desired transformation
- Work collaboratively and intimately to overcome fears of change
- Adjust their overall direction and strategic narratives as desired and required
How Strategic Narrative Engagements are Typically Structured
Our strategic narrative consulting engagements are by nature a collaborative and dynamic process.
Phase One: Discovery
Engagements always begin with an initial Discovery phase. Discovery begins with:
- An evaluation of skills and goals to assess/reveal underlying obstacles
- Reviews of existing comms and systems, 60 min 1-on-1 “sessions” with team leadership and backgrounding interviews with stakeholders as required.
- Review of underlying emotional and relationship dynamics
Based on what we hear, we create a summary in simple language that highlights commonalities as well as conceptual differences across the leadership.
As an outcome, Discovery generates consensus between us and you about what needs to be changed. It sets expectations about what results those changes are likely to generate.
The results of Discovery also focus key metrics to be improved or optimized, providing data-driven evidence of success.
Discovery culminates with a presentation of key insights to leadership, following which we integrate client feedback.
Phase Two: Instigating Change
Discovery is followed by an instigation phase that is tailored to the scope and circumstances of each strategic narrative consulting project. In larger teams, this typically includes an “Intervention” stage, which allows leadership to discuss and integrate the learnings from Discovery.
Often this phase includes facilitated workshops, design thinking-style sessions and other interactive exercises that enable the senior leadership team to address and overcome fears of change together.
For entrepreneurs, this stage often includes 1-on-1 coaching sessions that peel back the layers, empowering greater confidence and creativity.
Phase Three: Innovation
The Innovation phase interrupts existing systems and generates space to design new solutions:
- With our support, teams begin shifting behaviour, systems and strategy, using our foundations and frameworks
- When new systems are needed, we work collaboratively as a creative partner, guiding clients to innovate as appropriate
- At each step we help clients pause, re-evaluate and course correct. We provide both tactical guidance as well as more intimate coaching that strengthens leadership ability to communicate emotionally and dynamically.
Phase Four: Integration
Our strategic narrative consulting engagements culminate with integrative tools that allow clients to sustain the transformation. These tools include frameworks, foundations and practical systems, as well as the qualitative changes to mindsets, trust and strategic direction.
In this way we help you improve the systems that help your team sustain greater emotionality and impact in your communication, while also helping you and the overall team develop the confidence, mindsets and creative processes that this requires.
This dynamic and ever-evolving process is the essence of our approach to strategic narrative.
Introducing Rocket Science
As a strategic narrative consulting partner, Rocket Science begins with an in-depth analysis of a client’s business infrastructure, revealing a vast Ecosystem of functional and relational dynamics. Understanding this interplay empowers leaders to find and address where the Ecosystem is out of alignment. Through decades of workshop, speeches, consulting and 1:1 coaching, we’ve helped clients consistently supersede their previous possibilities, expectations and goals.
Jordan Bower (Co-founder)
Jordan Bower is a systems thinker, creative leader and expert business storyteller. After graduating from the Richard Ivey School of Business, Jordan spent seven years traveling the world, including a 316-day solo walk from Canada to Mexico. (It took three pairs of shoes.) In 2013, Jordan began delivering storytelling and creative leadership workshops for a global roster of clients, Jordan is a skillful facilitator and insightful coach, who can balance big-picture thinking, practical implementation and deep-rooted emotional intelligence.
Erwin Pearlman (Co-Founder)
Erwin is a gifted personal and business consultant whose expertise defies conventional description. Over the last 40 years, Erwin has developed a brilliant series of healing techniques that unite the outer and the inner. He has conducted more than 40,000 individual sessions, working with renowned experts in business leadership, science, politics and entertainment. Erwin has served on the board of various humanitarian non-profits and previously owned a high-end catering company. The quality of Erwin’s awareness and insight is extraordinary.