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Do you want to impact with stories? Choose good metaphors

For thousands of years, metaphors have helped make the most complex ideas available to everyone.

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For thousands of years, metaphors have helped make the most complex ideas available to everyone.

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February 24, 2021 9 min read

This article was translated from our Spanish edition using AI technologies. Errors may exist due to this process.

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  • Your business storytelling will improve if you master metaphors and use them to your advantage.
  • Sketches, analogies and allegories bring various benefits to your presentations.
  • Learn when it is most useful to use them and some tips to generate them.

Although there are different languages in the world, the phenomenon of metaphors is universal. Everywhere and everywhere, from the epic of Gilgamesh to the holy books or social media, humanity has conveyed complex ideas through simple meanings. Mastering this storytelling resource can help you make a difference in business.

What is a metaphor

First of all, we are talking about language tools. And, specifically, of rhetorical figures. Metaphors are ways of creating comparisons and similarities between things of a different nature. For example: we can assimilate the behavior of a person with that of an artifact when we say that someone “turns more than a fan.” Obviously, nobody is a fan, but when the person has been walking from one place to another for a long time, that mental image is worth a thousand words to us.

Metaphors help the recipients of our communication to be on the same mental plane and to understand the message more clearly. Metaphorically speaking, it could be said that they help “to put us all on the same page in the book.”

Business metaphors and storytelling

In an unconscious, though not innocent way, business language has been filled with metaphors, portraits, analogies and allegories in the last hundred years. This has happened because it is a way of making communication more efficient: by saving words, we also save time and resources.

How many times have you heard of the elevator pitch ? In itself, the concept is already an analogy. And it is understood much faster than the statement of its definition: “everything you can tell your boss about your project in the time that the elevator travels.”

You have also heard of ” data mining .” Another analogy. Everyone knows that data is obtained from observation and calculation, but never from mining in the strict sense. Again, a mental picture is worth a thousand words.

Types of metaphors

According to the American specialist Doug Rose , we can talk about three types of metaphorical figures common in the business world:

The semblance , which is defined as a “comparison between two objects or actions” posed with a phrase like: “more ( _____ ) that ( ______ ) ”or“ as ( ______ ) as ( ______ ) ”. Remember the previous example: “a person who turns more than a fan.” This is a quick think and speak tool. Help break the ice or reconnect with your audience. Sometimes you can use it as a joke (or even as a vicious criticism). The analogy , which is defined as “a prolonged comparison between two different objects or actions that are similar in more than one sense.” The goal of the analogy is to show two elements compared (one simple and the other complex) that have many things in common. And by explaining the simple, you discover the complex. An example: sometimes high-performance professional teams are compared to soccer teams in more ways than one. First: all its members play a role. Second: the goal of both teams is to win the competition. Third: all members must play in coordination. Fourth: there are always one or two “cracks” in each team … And we could continue indefinitely. But if you want to educate a high-performance professional team, it may be worth telling them about things that happen on a soccer team. Everyone will understand and better assume their role in the company.

The allegory , which is defined as “a fictitious story, a poem or a portrait that brings us a message or life lesson.” In this area I place the parables of Jesus of Nazareth in the New Testament, or the fables of the Greek Aesop , or the reflections of Paulo Coelho, among many others. In this resource lyric and poetry are often used. Truly, there are very beautiful allegories. The famous book “Who has taken my cheese? ”Could be an example. When to use a metaphor

Whether in internal or external communication, interpersonal or collective, there are many occasions in professional life where metaphors can give you an advantage. I share two very valuable moments for me: the reframing of complex problems and the communication of feelings and emotions.

Reframing : Imagine that you are launching a new product on the market. You have discovered a need that no one else has seen and you see yourself able to satisfy it. But there is a problem: that need is not immediate and will not be visible for a couple of years, so there is no way to demonstrate it with data now. And that has its consequences: you are not getting your investors to support you because they do not see the need as you see it.

If you are faced with a complex problem that you cannot argue with data and that is also difficult to communicate, you can develop a refocusing. As Nadia Goodman explained on Entrepreneur.com, the reframing (or refocusing) technique consists of creating a new perspective on a problem from which you can observe, analyze and explain it more comfortably. With reframing you can, for example, find an analogy with which everyone understands you.

Do you want an example? When Steve Jobs launched the first Apple iPod in 2001 , he could have explained his idea with slang and complex words. He could have said: “we have connected a lot of chips and cables so that people have a cool device” or “we think there will be so many people who will buy the product if we sell it to them for so many dollars a piece.”

But he avoided all that. Instead, he preferred a metaphor to fix the attention of his audience: “What if we get everyone to put the entire disco at home (CDs, records, cassettes … ) in their pocket?” Today the concept seems obvious to us, but 20 years ago it was something revolutionary: pure analogy.

Communicating feelings : more and more organizations want to be excellent in their processes. They strive to put people at the center of their operations, taking into account the expectations of all stakeholders . But to do this, they must begin by understanding well how all these people feel and thus resonate with those feelings. And that is difficult.

Personally, I think that one of the most complex things to talk about in life is feelings. If I say “anger”, “sadness” or “joy”, surely you know what I mean. You know it, yes, but you don’t feel it. Instead, I can increase the impact of what I want to tell you by using metaphors.

An example: I once had a boss who was always grumpy. I could describe it to you in two ways, one long and the other short:

  • Extensive: “My boss was a person who felt a lot of anger inside, but who took great care of his external forms. So your first impression with him was always favorable. But once you treated him daily, you saw that he was a bitter person. ” (42 words)
  • Short: “ My boss was like a volcano covered in snow. ”(9 words)
  • The second way is much shorter and is sure to create a more lasting image in your head. Therefore, it is more efficient: you accomplish much more with much less. Companies that want to be excellent could benefit by promoting a culture of metaphors that help them better convey and understand the emotions of their internal or external audiences.

Four tips to master your metaphors

If you want to enhance your business storytelling with metaphors, I recommend that you follow these four tips:

First : read and listen. A lot of. Read from others. Especially from novelists and authors who use those rhetorics that make you feel connected to their message. And listen to people who speak well and who make you feel better.

Second : observe the things that happen to you and the situations that surround you. If something reminds you of something different, think why. You could be facing an interesting metaphor.

Third : take notes of your readings, listens and observations. Many. Do not forget to carry a notebook with you at all times. There you will collect those ideas that resonated so well in your head. When in doubt whether to keep listening or score, score! Everything that you do not write down the moment it resonates with you will be a forgetfulness.

Fourth : practice. A lot of. As the months go by, your notebook will be full of metaphors. Analyze them, group them, meditate on them and, finally, apply them in your formal, informal, verbal and written communication. If they are successful, save them. If not, look for others. You will learn a new descriptive power. And your business storytelling will improve substantially.

Source: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/entrepreneur/latest/~3/-ur4JmVaobo/365987

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How Success Happened for Josh Harris, Co-Founder of Apollo Global Management and Co-Founder of Harris Blitzer Sports & Entertainment

Harris has a knack for building and growing forward-thinking ventures.

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July 13, 2021 5 min read

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Josh Harris has a short resume. For nearly his entire professional career, he has held only one job, sitting at the helm of Apollo Global Management.

Since co-founding Apollo in 1990, Harris has spent the last 31 years building and shaping what has become a leading alternatives asset manager. But even with 15 offices globally and over $460 billion in assets under management, Harris has found time to pursue passions outside of the financial industry. With an eye for uncovering potential value, the investor maintains a robust family investment office, is an active philanthropist through family foundation Harris Philanthropies, and has successfully launched a premier sports and entertainment platform, Harris Blitzer Sports & Entertainment, which has grown to include the Philadelphia 76ers, New Jersey Devils and Prudential Center in Newark New Jersey.

Related: Check out recent guests Josh Harris and Thomas Tull on the How Success Happens podcast

Harris credits wrestling for unlocking his internal drive. After participating in wrestling at summer camp at a young age, he was hooked. The intensity of the sport and raw physical strength it demanded was motivating and compelling to his innate competitive spirit. But he quickly learned that without preparation — a healthy diet, cross-training and time on the mat — you get physically dominated. Once a struggling student, wrestling helped Harris turn his academics around and earned him acceptance to the University of Pennsylvania — and a coveted spot on the wrestling team there.

It was at Penn where Harris first got a taste of finance. An introductory economics class ignited a similar spark within him, compelling him to go to the fast-paced world of Wall Street. He transferred to Wharton and dove headfirst into finance.

“I was allured by [the idea of] helping companies grow,” Harris says. “I was a sponge for knowledge and wanted to learn everything I could … from the best people.”

The decision was made. He bought his first suit and headed to Wall Street.

“This is what I would recommend to [anyone just starting their career]: Treat your life like an investment,” Harris says. “Do something you are passionate about … look at the upsides, the downsides. What is your competitive advantage? … Really look at it analytically.”

Harris used that same lens when faced with an even bigger decision, several years into his career. After cutting his teeth at Drexel Burnham Lambert and attending Harvard Business School, Harris accepted a position at Blackstone. A few weeks in, he got a call from former colleagues Marc Rowan and Leon Black, asking him to join a new firm, the fledgling Apollo. Harris had worked only weeks at Blackstone — and used his signing bonus to pay off his student loans — but he was enticed by an opportunity to build with people whom he knew.

Fast forward thirty years, Apollo has become the second-largest alternatives and largest alternative credit manager in the world. Harris has been the architect of some of the firm’s most successful deals, including the historic LyondellBasell transaction, one of the most profitable deals in PE history.

In 2011, Harris applied skills from his day job to a new venture — joining forces with David Blitzer to purchase the Philadelphia 76ers from Comcast in a corporate carveout. One of the most rewarding aspects of owning sports teams, Harris says, has been serving as a steward of the city.

“[Sports teams] are public assets…you take on a real obligation to help the communities where you are playing,” he adds.

Related: Check Out These Top Sports Podcasts

Giving back to the communities where HBSE operates — namely Philadelphia, Camden and Newark — is of top priority for Harris. In our conversation, it was clear how deeply he believes in the power of sports to change lives, just as wrestling had changed the trajectory of his life. Through his many charitable endeavors with HBSE and Harris Philanthropies, Harris is focused on creating opportunities for kids to experience sports who might not otherwise be able to, providing access to sports programming and pairing it with academic resources and other support. More broadly, Harris Philanthropies is focused on catalytic giving and creating equitable opportunities in the communities where the Foundation has a deep connection.

In the past year, however, Covid-19 was front and center, requiring the Foundation to adjust their strategy to address needs brought on by the pandemic. We [immediately] had to pivot [our strategy] and lead,” says Harris, who through HBSE and Harris Philanthropies, set to work distributing food, medical supplies, frontline equipment, laptops and other resources to local communities.

Now Harris is starting a new chapter, returning to his entrepreneurial roots. Having recently announced that he’ll be stepping back from his day-to-day role at Apollo, Harris is excited about continuing to expand HBSE, as well as his multi-asset class investing business and diving deeper into social impact. But he hasn’t lost touch of what has driven him throughout his career — building and investing in success.

Related: Let us Help Your Brand Create Its Own Podcast

Related: Check out recent guests Josh Harris and Thomas Tull on the How Success Happens podcast

Source: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/entrepreneur/latest/~3/j7fh3NY-vQE/374991

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Virgin Galactic Cleared by FAA For Passenger Space Travel

Will billionaire and founder Richard Branson beat Jeff Bezos to space?

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June 25, 2021 2 min read

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic, in a statement, announced the FAA has upgraded its existing license to include passenger flights.

The company also says the approval is the first of its kind. Shares jumped 12% in premarket trading.

The journey, however, has been somewhat bumpy, Engadget reports. In December 2020, the company’s test flight ended in a motor ignition failure. In February of this year, Virgin Galactic delayed its tourism flights until 2022 saying more “technical checks” were needed.

Related: Virgin Galactic’s VSS Unity Completes Human Spaceflight

The company then had to complete dozens of verification and validation requirements to clear the final two steps for the FAA’s approval. CEO Michael Colglazier says the crewed test flight on May 22 was a success:

“We’re incredibly pleased with the results of our most recent test flight… [which] performed flawlessly, and the results demonstrate the safety and elegance of our flight system. [We’re confident] as we proceed toward our first fully crewed test flight this summer.”

Related: Elon Musk’s SpaceX signs alliance with Google Cloud to offer satellite internet with Starlink

The company, which began working on its mission to space in 2004, says it’s preparing for the remaining three test flights.

Unconfirmed reports also suggest Virgin Galactic is working to send Branson on a suborbital flight during the July 4 weekend, according to Business Insider. That’s two weeks before Jeff Bezos is scheduled to board his Blue Origin’s New Shepard for space on July 20.

Related: Blue Origin Is Challenging SpaceX’s Artemis Lander Contract From NASA

Source: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/entrepreneur/latest/~3/MOGXdxbDu3A/375771

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10 Deals for $20 That You Won’t Find on Amazon

After all, Amazon doesn’t have everything.

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After all, Amazon doesn’t have everything.

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June 21, 2021 4 min read

Disclosure: Our goal is to feature products and services that we think you’ll find interesting and useful. If you purchase them, Entrepreneur may get a small share of the revenue from the sale from our commerce partners.

Despite diversifying its options over the past few years, Amazon doesn’t have everything. One of its biggest shortcomings is its lack of educational resources. If you’re looking for a more substantive purchase, consider investing in your own professional development. We’ve rounded up a collection of courses you won’t find on Amazon and, for a limited time, they’re all just $20.

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The real estate industry is booming, for both commercial and retail investors alike. In this five-course bundle, you’ll learn how to think like a professional real estate investor. You’ll explore pre-investing practices, wholesale deals, and much more.

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Earn some extra money in the stock market by learning the trading techniques employed by the pros. This technical analysis bundle will teach you how to analyze candlestick patterns and use data to make more informed investment decisions.

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The Premium 2021 Project & Quality Management Certification Bundle

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After a lengthy pandemic that hurt many small businesses, it’s important to hit the ground running in this hot economy with more efficient and productive processes in place. This bundle will introduce you to a range of project management methodologies, from Agile to PMP, to help you institute positive changes in your business.

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Got a creative streak? Indulge it! This extensive bundle covers the entire Adobe Creative Cloud, teaching you how to edit photos with Photoshop, become a graphic designer with Illustrator and XD, edit videos with Premiere Pro, and much more.

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Got a brilliant app idea? Learn how to bring it to life with this nine-course bundle. You’ll get an introduction to building apps for iOS 14 using Swift 5, learn how to build apps for Android 11, get up to speed on Java programming fundamentals, and more.

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