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The Power of You: why event superheroes tell their own stories

‘The Power of You’ might sound like a slogan you’d hear thrown around in the latest Avengers movie, but Ashfield Meetings & Events is adamant that we all have a superpower at our disposal. Here Adam Smith, Ashfield’s proposal coordinator, tells us exactly how superheroes and storytelling can be our greatest weapon in the workplace.

Each year, Ashfield Meetings & Events hold their company conference and supplier exhibition, The Lab, during which a different theme and ethos are presented to help empower our employees and bolster best practice across the business.

This year’s premise revolved around ‘The Power of You’ and how sharing, connecting and creating with colleagues and collaborators can bring about a better and brighter future.

As a relatively new recruit of the Ashfield army, The Lab was an in-depth look into the future of the company – a business who knows that the story is only as strong as the sum of its characters. And it was a few days after the conference that the penny truly dropped: we aren’t just characters in one big book, but the main characters of our very own stories.

This realisation got me thinking about the importance of the story we tell in our working lives and just how a person might make themselves stand out and better their career by employing some storytelling techniques (and a morsel of superhero magic!).

We all judge a book by its cover

Ashfield's The Lab

Ashfield’s The Lab

First impressions are everything and in spite of even the most heroic of efforts, we all prejudge from time to time. We’ll wrinkle our noses at wonky vegetables, avoid shady-looking streets and cross the road to bypass a dubiously dressed youth – never mind what could be going on underneath.

The workplace is much the same: those initial interactions can be what determines the path for us. For those of us at the very beginning of our journeys, there’s no better way to kickstart our success story than to make the most of our first few months. Simply making your presence known through introductions can be enough to encourage a positive initial response, but being brave enough to showcase your skills and talents from the get-go is the real winner of the day.

For those who have been about the office for some time already, though, the element of surprise may seem like a long-lost cousin you can only loosely recall the name of. But finding your second wind can be just as valuable – it’s never too late for a plot twist. There’s never a bad time to let your colleagues know what you’re really capable of achieving, so why not dig deeper into your utility belt and unleash something you’ve been saving for a rainy day?

Be the superhero, not the secret identity

The Lab was all about not being afraid to be the best version of yourself; to tell your personal story and apply your own unique skillset – your superpowers, if you will – in your job role. After all, it is the disguise of our secret identity that we all wear to protect ourselves that ultimately holds us back.

Perhaps you’ve seen there’s something missing in the workplace, or feel you could offer a solution to one of the office’s most dire dilemmas, but haven’t dared to step up and confront this villain head on. Or perhaps you’ve been doing your job for so long now that you’ve got complacent and ‘comfortable’. There’s no better time than now to suit up and swing into action before somebody else soars in and saves the day instead.

The moral of the story

Storytelling is key

Storytelling is key

Success stories aren’t reserved for any one kind of person; no single success story is the same as another, in the very same way no single one of us is the same as anyone else.

We are all capable of being the main character in the stories we star in; it’s just how we choose to tell our story that draws the distinction. We all have our superpowers, but it’s how we use those skills that steers our story’s narrative. Unless we showcase, we may never reach our fullest potential – and that is the saddest way a story can end.

Next time you head into the office, don’t forget to dust off your cape and strut your stuff. You’ve got a success story waiting to be told, and there’s no better voice to tell that story than your own.