I’m a big fan of the Little Bear stories by Else Holmelund Minarik. My favorite is “What Will Little Bear Wear?” Mother Bear sends her little one out to play on a bright, snowy day. He shortly returns and announces that he’s cold and wants “something to put on.” Mother Bear obliges and makes a hat for him to wear. Loving the hat, he returns to his outside play but keeps coming back inside to announce that he wants something MORE to wear, and ends up swaddled in a pair of homemade snow pants and a coat as well. When he appeals for yet another piece of clothing, Mother Bear asks if a fur coat would make him warm. When he responds “Yes!”, she proceeds to remove the hat, the pants and the coat and send him back out to play in the fur that lay beneath the clothing. And Little Bear was warm and happy.
This, my friends, is a perfect metaphor for many of the conversations I have with clients; and I’m seriously tempted sometimes to introduce myself as “Mother Bear”. When you come to me and ask me to write something for you, I’ll be happy to do that, but before you invest a penny in my writing – let’s invest first on an analysis of what you’re doing already to communicate your business and your goals. Let’s go back to the basics and ask together – with whom are you communicating, and to what end? If you still need the hat, the coat, the pants (or my writing), I’m happy to do that. But I’ll wager that you probably have the fur coat you need. Let’s talk – I want to hear your story.