Raising life by the power of two

When two people share an incredible experience, that experience is not
multiplied by two, but rather raised by the power of two. It more than
doubles – it’s squared! A 10 doesn’t become 20 – it becomes 100, or
even more. Why?

Because shared experiences become stories that are told over and over
again.

On page 79 of “Work the Pond” (Darcy Rezac) is a powerful example of
how to build an incredible experience and get a story told not ten
times, but a thousand times. The Navy invited opinion leaders to
understand what the Navy does and to tell the Navy’s story. They put
together a fantastic experience involving landing aboard and taking
off from an aircraft carrier and hanging out of top-gun pilots. But
they didn’t just arrange this spectacle for the opinion leaders – they
were smart enough to include the spouses as well. This meant that
instead of the experience becoming, “Oh, no, not the carrier story
again!”, it became a treasured story to be told over and over again.

I remember a story my parents told me about giving people incredible
experiences. My parents understood that if you’re going to give
someone an Experience with a capital E, that experience would be
magnified even more if they had someone to share it with. If they were
the only ones to, say, go on a helicopter flight, the stories would
wear thin or be almost unbelievable. If they had one friend along,
though, the stories would go on and on, growing more exciting with
each memory.

I’ve seen that among friends, too. Driving around town with the
Katz brothers was *amazing*. They completed each others’ sentences,
refreshed each others’ memory, built up each other’s energy. Reliving
memories with my barkada (close group of friends) brings back the fun
and the laughter. (Peppy, remember all the ice cream we had after I
worked on your computer?)

I really appreciate being able to share all these experiences with
people. I think that’s one of the coolest things about having long
relationships, and I’m looking forward to enjoying that even more with
my family and my friends.

Anyway. If you want to make something really special for someone, make
it possible for them to share the experiences and the stories with
at least one other person. =) “Remember when…” are such powerful words!

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  • Dear Sacha,
    Thank you for mentioning our book (my co-authors are Judy Thomson and Galye Hallgren: http://shepablog.blogspot.com).
    You are exactly right. Networking done right is a power function, not the mere additon of the component parts. Just go to LinkedIn and check out how well connected you are, even with a few connections. Of course, more are better and the magic of it all is that it turns out our weak links are more often important to our success than our close links (see Mark Granovetter: the Strength of Weak Tiesl).
    Gayle and I always put two people between us at dinner partie, that way we each get to talk to two other people and hear their stories (as someone once said, “At the end of the day, stories are all we have, because stories are what we are.) That way 1+1=4, rather than 1+1=2 if we sit next to each other.
    If a table of 8 all exchange cards, 56 cards are exchanged–that is why at The Vancouver Board of Trade at the more than 100 speaker luncheons we host each year we say, “Before lunch, please stand up and shake hands and exchange cards with everyone at your table–56 cards are exchanged, rather than 2 or 3 which is what happens when “permission to network” is not granted. That is how more than 250,000 cards are exchanged at The Board annually….a power function, indeed. You are spot on, Sacha, great article, wonderful blog–congratulations. Visit my blog if you wish at http://rezac.blogspot.com, or email at drezac@me.com if there is anthing we can do for you.

    (Edited: Removed business-card type information; that’s what the blog link is for. =) )