Evan Hackel

By Evan Hackel

Why Telling Your Company Story Adds Depth to Your Training

Why Telling Your Company Story Adds Depth to Your Training 1024 683 Evan Hackel

If you were creating a training program for Apple, would you fail to mention Steve Jobs? If you were designing training for Walmart sales associates, would you forget to mention Sam Walton – the visionary company founder who reinvented customer service? And if you were training personnel to work at Disney theme parks, would you leave out Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse . . . or Walt himself?

Of course not. Their stories are part of the DNA that lives on in the companies they founded.  And what about your company’s DNA? Who was your founder, for example, and what prompted him or her to start the firm? Every company, including yours, has a story. It was started with a purpose, it has a reason for being and it has a story that should be told.

If you take even a little time to talk about your founders and your history – especially when training new employees – your training immediately improves, for some very practical reasons.

  • Employees immediately become a team. They’re no longer people who just show up and start working. They understand that they are part of something that is bigger, and that adds conviction to what they do.
  • They immediately learn important lessons about company values and priorities. Maybe you work for a bank that was founded after World War II to help returning soldiers buy their first homes or open new businesses. Or perhaps 150 years ago your founder invented a piece of equipment that turned your region into a center of agriculture. Or your founder is a social activist who launched your company with a big idea to help the world. Those are important stories. Whatever yours is, why not take a little time to tell it in your training? The lessons people learn are more than nice to know – they train employees how to make practical decisions that are in line with company values and ethics.
  • They gain a repertoire of stories to take out with them into the world. Salespeople gain the ability to talk about your company, its founders, and what you stand for. Executives can talk about your company with pride when they interact with leaders of other companies. Even customer service representatives and other front-line personnel can project deeply held company values and attitudes.

And here’s another training tip . . .

Why tell your company story with words alone, when historical photos of your founder or early company facilities can give trainees a compelling sense of how your firm got started? Images offer a powerful way to turn “dry history” into more powerful training.