It’s Stand-Up Night For Entrepreneurs

By Diane Mastrull
The Philadelphia Inquirer

WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) Very cool idea gaining ground out of Philadelphia where entrepreneurs get together and share their stories of starting and owning a business (sort of like a poetry slam). The StartUp Story Slam–“Storytelling for entrepreneurs” is a new business venture from two locals with national and international expansion plans. For women in business who need to sharpen their storytelling skills (which is vital in pitching and selling) this could be a fun and interesting activity.

The Philadelphia Inquirer

This particular Thursday night in April, cold beer and thin-crust pizza were plentiful. Desks had been rolled out of the way, replaced by rows of chairs filled with mostly twenty- and thirty-somethings drinking, eating, and generally having a good time.

By coworking-space standards, it seemed like a run-of-the-mill happy hour at Benjamin’s Desk on 17th Street in Center City.

Routine, that is, until the first name was called, a woman rose from her chair and stepped to the microphone, and the storytelling began.

When it was all over nearly three hours later, 13 businesspeople had stood alone in front of an audience of 40. Each had told a five-minute story on a designated theme: courage.

Thinking on your feet and communicating effectively are essential talents for StartUp Story Slam — “Storytelling for entrepreneurs,” says the tagline for this new business venture from two locals with national and international expansion plans.

Modeled after barroom slams — you know, the ones where patrons share alcohol-fueled tales of their worst dates, their in-law horrors, their most embarrassing moments — StartUp Story Slam is for business owners.

The idea is to develop what founders Andy Meehan and Jim Breslin say is a vital skill in successfully starting and growing a business.

“People need to be really good at telling their story, and that’s not numbers and hockey-stick charts,” said Meehan, 52, of Manayunk. “It’s about emotional engagement. That’s why people buy — for emotional reasons.”

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