Find the Story, Find the Job

by Brendyn Schneider

Hello Friends,

When I’m not telling stories around New England, I work at an employment center called Career Source. We help people navigate the job-seeking skies.

Recently, it occurred to me that the same must-haves that go into a compelling story can be used to create an applicant-organization match. I just finished putting the final touches on a curriculum that will teach job seekers this approach but as storytellers, I thought you’d appreciate the gist.

We know that a story must have a beginning, middle and ending. The tale’s richness comes from change. Someone or something has to change. Think of your favorite stories – real or otherwise. If it’s a good one, it’s got each of these must-haves and along the way, there’s some kind of change.

Now, think of the job search. You are the protagonist. The beginning of this story is the applicable experience you possess. The middle is where you are right now in your job hunt – your interest in the organization and position (in that order), the podcasts, classes and training you’re digesting, the choices that are bringing you to those interviews, surrounded by those people. The ending is where you see yourself in 1, 3, 5 years down the road. The change is what you can do for the organization. How will that organization change for the better as a result of your hire?

Concurrently, there’s the organization’s narrative. Be versed in it. Know that you are not applying to just a position. You are applying to an organization. Therefore, you must know its story. How did the organization start? What is its mission statement? What initiatives are they executing right now? Where will they be in 1, 3, 5 years down the road (this last one is a good question to ask during the interview itself even if you already know the answer!) How will the organization change for the better as a result of your hire?

Ah ha! See the connections? When your story dovetails with the organization’s story, when everyone is on the same page, that’s when you are hired.

I invite you to check out my other job-seeker tips at and please pass this link on to any jobseekers you know out there!

© 2017, Brendyn Schneider, reprinted by Northeast Storytelling with permission. Use or reprint not authorized without permission from the author. All rights reserved.

Professional storyspinner, published writer, performance instructor, host, and TedX Coach, Brendyn Schneider is a Boston-based storyteller who’s been featured at Sharing the Fire, WGBH Studios, Emerson College, Coolidge Corner Theater, Somerville Theatre and other action-packed venues across New England. Making frequent appearances with Massmouth and the Moth, Brendyn takes his audiences on story-trips of wit through the follies of growing up and the everyday slog. For more, please venture to


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