If you look closely, all and any of our stories weave together. For Ankur, a TEDxPaloAlto speaker I coached, three childhood models led to a profound impact on the lives of 38 people he would meet 20 years later. His grandmother’s insistence to be relevant, his father’s big dreams and perseverance, and his mother’s empathy lit the entrepreneurial path that led–in no arbitrary fashion–away from Silicon Valley and to his hometown in Kentucky. Here, he spun his parents’ and grandmother’s legacies into brand new opportunities for the locals of his hometown.
Through the workforce development program he spearheaded, 35 struggling jobless individuals not only earned technical skills and secured steady employment in the tech economy, but kickstarted their own inspiring journeys: A husband and wife got off food stamps for the first time; a single mother began teaching code; a refugee became an entrepreneur.
But that was only the beginning. Ankur has since gathered, trained and launched another class of cohorts, and is receiving accolades from business leaders and government officials. New partnerships are contributing to the growth of his company’s training program in more and more communities.
Still, Ankur draws his success back to the core of inspiration: storytelling. The course of his program is illuminated by each story of a life changed, of an individual granted opportunity and heartened to act upon it, of human potential ignited and nurtured and celebrated.
A good story travels naturally; it spread its own wings and nests in the hearts of those who receive it. The storyteller just maps its flight.