Kurian Mathew Tharakan is the founder of the sales and marketing strategy firm StrategyPeak Sales & Marketing Advisors and a 27-year veteran of the sales and marketing industry.
Mr. Tharakan is also the author of the Amazon Bestseller, “The 7 Essential Stories Charismatic Leaders Tell,” which details how anyone can move people and mountains with the power of story.
Who is Kurian Tharakan?
When Kurian graduated from University many years ago he knew he wanted to be a consultant but he didn’t realize how naive he was at the time regarding what that entailed. 30 years later, Kurian is now the sales and marketing consultant that he dreamed of but along the way he learned that life is not a straight line.
The very zigs and zags that characterized his growth and development over time are the foundation for his knowledge and expertise that he uses on a day to day basis.
Kurian has a more spiritual perspective on life than a business perspective at this point. He realized that you have to practice intention rather than force, and when you align that perspective with what a client is trying to achieve that is when the magic happens.
Every failure became a learning lesson, even if he didn’t realize it at the time. Some of the best things that have ever happened to him, didn’t happen at all.
Intention vs Force
Intentions matter. The things that you think you need (that job or that promotion) may not fit what you intend. You have to understand what you really want out of life rather than making a strict judgement on how it’s supposed to look.
It’s more effective to allow things to flow into place in a way that matches your intentions, rather than demanding or forcing reality to conform to what you think you want.
Reaction is reflexive, and it’s often not the action for the moment. Intention allows you to respond consciously, but responding takes practice and effort. Intentions create a framework for how things come about in your business without dictating the exact shape, color, and size.
Reacting is usually based on emotions like fear or greed, and neither of those serve you in business very well. Instead of planning for dozens of potential contingencies that may or may not happen, stop torturing yourself and keep it simple. It’s also important to distinguish the business from who you are and regardless of what happens with the business knowing that you’ll be okay.
Storytelling and Leadership
Most leaders and entrepreneurs didn’t go to school to become sales people, but they are in the position where they have to sell their idea to partners, investors, and customers. Modern humans have been relating to each other through story for thousands of years and human brains are well wired to listen to stories.
Facts on their own are extremely boring. Facts embedded with meaning and then translated into stories become extremely memorable.
Anybody leading people needs to understand that the stories you tell create the culture you want. Your stories have to lead you in the direction you want to create the result you’re trying to create.
The first story is your creation/origin story. What is it that created the initial start of the company, who was involved, and what were the initial struggles?
The second story is your identity, beliefs, and values. Anything that is important to your organization and central to its mission and values. What is the central organizing principle that binds everything you do into a cohesive whole?
The third story is about the enemies we face, what we fight for or fight against.
The fourth story is about the mighty winds, the big macro trends that power your sailing ship. These are societal trends, technology, environmental, political, and legislative, and if you’re counter to the macrotrend your organization will die.
The other stories are “the journey that we must undertake”, and the “why we will win” story. All these stories answer primal questions you’re people are asking and allows them to create meaning and conviction in your mission.
You have the seeds for all these stories embedded in your mind already, you just need to tease it out and write them down. When people lose their way, it’s because they have lost their story.