If magic is "the art of changing consciousness at will..."
... Then story is the most effective form of magic anyone can practice.
Greetings! I'm Jessica.
And among other things (adventurer, philosopher, wilderness guide; lover of mountains and metaphors and chocolate with fruit inside), I am a professional storytelling and leadership coach based in San Francisco, CA.
But years ago, when I was starting out on the East coast?
I didn’t realize how often the biggest opportunities get decided (and distributed) inside a single conversation.
The first time I courted a BIG prospective client, I spent two full days crafting the perfect proposal.
I had the book Made to Stick open on the dining room table, my laptop surrounded by a growing collection of stained coffee mugs and crumb-covered plates.
Later, the client would say it “brought tears to his eyes” for how “poignant” and “needed” my ideas were.
I left his office certain my proposal had worked; that the contract was mine.
But then weeks went by…
Which turned into months…
Until I finally got the news…
The contract had gone to someone else.
And not just anyone else -- an old white dude someone else.
I consoled myself by saying I didn’t want that contract anyway.
Then I moved 3,000 miles away, to the most expensive city in North America,
With no job, no apartment, and a few casual acquaintances for friends.
What I had was 3 contacts who had agreed to a meeting.
This time, I didn’t spend hours laboring over a fancy proposal.
Instead, I sent the obligatory resume (which contained a colorful pie chart attributing one fifth of my education to "school") and showed up in a blue dress from Banana Republic.
Sitting across from the bemused CEO, a view of San Francisco Bay sweeping out to my right, he asked me over tented fingers why I wanted to work there, given that (from what he could tell) I had no relevant experience to speak of.
I looked out the window and thought about it.
Then, I told him a story.
A true story, about how backpacking in the woods as a teenager changed my perspective, healed a hurt and confused part of me, and made me realize how vital and needed it is to connect people with nature -- as much for their well being as for that of the natural world, which so desperately needs more allies.
... Which (I think?) was what the organization was all about.
3 days later, I was hired to do a job that (on paper, at least)
I was completely unqualified to do.
And I knew, despite having ZERO of the “5 years’ experience” and “demonstrated track record” that were required for the position, that I could do it.
Although I'd experienced the power of story before, this was the moment my brain short-circuited, smoke wafted out of my ears, and I realized how:
Story helps people see value, where before, they saw nothing at all.
... Especially in business.
Since then, I've personally leveraged story to:
Generate my first paying clients (while still working full time)
Build a business from scratch (in a niche no one had heard of at the time)
Escape the 9-5 entirely (and become my own boss)
Quintuple my hourly rates in my first year of business (my clients told me to!)
Move countless prospects from “I can’t afford it” to “I can’t wait to get started!”
Land lucrative contracts with top Bay Area accelerators, universities and nonprofits
Earm the title of "Head Story Coach" (what even is that?) at General Assembly SF
Become an adjunct story and career coach at U.C. Berkeley-Haas School of Business
Publish 100+ articles online, generating tens of thousands in surprise revenue when (out of the blue!) readers reached out to say “I’m ready now!”
Quit trading my time for money and start getting paid for my value
Launch my Own Your Story online accelerator, exceeding both enrollment AND revenue goals, and...
Achieve a lifelong dream of making my business location-independent, so that I can run it from anywhere in the world*
*(wherever there is strong wifi, that is,
which is a surprisingly difficult feat in some places)
... but the best part?
Is having had the PRIVILEGE of partnering with so many amazing people to excavate and leverage THEIR stories, so that they could:
Get that investor to say:
“Let me know where to send the check.”
Get that partner to say:
“Let’s demo this in twelve of our buildings.”
Get the Big Boss to say:
“Let’s allocate 1% of our $800MM budget for the first year.”
Land leadership roles at top companies like
Google, Apple, Nike, Lyft
Gracefully negotiate their
highest salaries yet
Midwife the story of their
Turn hesitant prospects into
eager paying customers
Launch (and grow) their own business and
escape the 9-5
Even (twice!) to craft the
perfect wedding vows
And another time (swoon!) to successfully
adopt a baby boy
(Honestly, it gives me chills to see
all these things in one place!)
All this to say that if YOU have a big dream that is asking you to step outside your comfort zone and try your hand at changing consciousness at will...
I have one question for you:
When is a better time to start... than now?
To your one
wild and precious life,
"Jessica is the person you want in your corner to take your business to new heights."
Jessica is not only a master storyteller but also an incredible guide and coach. She helped me construct stories that will be a cornerstone in my business and help my brand stand out. I cannot recommend Jessica enough. She is badass, brilliant, honest, and the person you want in your corner to construct your story and take your life, career or business to new heights!
Founder, Culture ADD Labs