Stories Trigger Oxytocin
We need the third and final piece of the AMPLIFII formula. This is The Tie-Down – – where the value is created with a clear influence objective in mind.
The tie-down finishes the statement, “What this means to you is … .” It connects the dots of why this story is of value to the listener. It ensures that the listener doesn’t assume incorrectly the moral or lesson of the story. It protects you from being misunderstood and makes the value you are delivering explicit and obvious. Never assume they see the value, tie it down.
Even though a tie-down sometimes is action-based, it’s not necessarily a call to action. The tie-down is about clearly ensuring the value to the listener.
Let’s look at one client’s full answer to the initial question using the AMPLIFII formula—frame, message, tie-down. It looks like this:
- FRAME: “Unfortunately, growing up I was surrounded by adults who told me I wasn’t very smart. When adults tell you that as a child, you begin to believe it, and I had a hard time in school. But something happened in my senior year in high school. I looked at myself in the mirror and said, ‘I’m either going to believe them forever or I’m going to do something about it and prove them wrong.’ I decided I was going to do something about it. And I did.”
- MESSAGE: “I got straight A’s my senior year.”
- TIE-DOWN: “I share that story with you because, if I do get the opportunity to work with you and your team, there will be times when we will be under pressure with our backs against the wall or facing seemingly insurmountable challenges. I promise you this: I’ll be right out there working next to you as hard as I can to overcome the challenges in the same way I overcame challenges in my own personal life, but this time for you and your team.”