Posted on July 6, 2022 by Drew Tumlinson I think this is a very simple and self-explanatory statement: your story matters. But I want to take the time to dive into what that actually means, at least to me. We all have a story. Every single one of us, even those with the most privilege have a story that’s worth sharing. In fact, I’d argue that it’s imperative that we all share our stories (when and how we’re comfortable doing so, of course). Why Is It Important To Share Our Stories? At the root of all humans’ basic needs is connection. The best way for us to connect with one another is to highlight commonalities, especially shared experiences. Think about it: when you listen to a Ted Talk from someone who came from a similar background as you that is now running a multimillion dollar company, do you feel a little more motivated and inspired to chase your dreams, too? I know I do! The same goes for seeing someone’s TikTok or Instagram post — it shows people that they’re not alone in their struggles. And that, my friends, is how humans connect. How Do I Share My Story? There is no “right” way to share your story. Some common ways people share their stories are through social media videos, social posts, blog posts, speaking events, one on one conversations…the list goes on and on. Maybe one day you feel particularly confident in sharing a piece of your story, so you write out a blog post and publish it. Another day you’re feeling even more inspired to share your story, so you record a quick video to share on social media. Or maybe you’re out at happy hour with a coworker and feel safe enough to share a piece of your story with them. No matter what it looks like for you, I encourage you to share your story with others and be open to hearing other people’s perspectives on their own lived experiences. Should We Share Our Stories At Work? There’s likely several perspectives on this, but as a transgender and queer marketing professional, I think sharing our stories at work is necessary and leads to overall growth as a business and a team, and cultivates a diverse, open, and empathetic culture. Growth As a Business When employees and clients share their stories with coworkers and professional partners/clients/customers, the door is open for them to feel comfortable enough to share their stories, too. This can lead to new business opportunities within communities you may not have been able to reach before. It’s also a way to show that you, as a business, support a diverse community and are a safe place for underrepresented individuals. Growth As a Team Similarly, you can not only expand your team by showing support and empathy towards individuals from all walks of life but also create a stronger bond with your existing team. When people connect with shared experiences, they’re often more open to listening and working collaboratively with each other. Remember: connection is a basic human need we all have! Cultivating a Diverse, Open, Empathetic Culture When one team member shares part of their story, it communicates to other team members that this is a safe place to share. It also encourages sharing our differences, which, I believe, is what makes the world a better place. When we understand individual differences, we tend to be more empathetic during stressful times (like when a client makes an urgent request at 4pm on a Friday afternoon). This all leads to more open and positive interactions with one another day-to-day. Webfor is Dedicated to Inclusion We believe that a person’s race, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, economic background, and lived experience can provide unique perspectives, and that diversity contributes to innovation and problem-solving. We support people and organizations with similar values in order to create positive ripple effects in our community. With this in mind, we believe that storytelling is an important aspect of making a positive impact. We hope to provide a safe and inclusive space for all to feel comfortable sharing their stories in an effort to bring more empathy and connection to our little piece of the world.