About the author.
My name is Ashraf Ramzy, Narratologist, Business Story Consultant, Coach, Author, Speaker, Founder and CEO of MasterStory®. Some 30 years ago I attained a master’s degree in Narratology, the science and study of Story. Since then I have been quietly putting the power of Story to work for visionary brands, organizations and leaders. And, with great success. During those 30 years, a systematic and effective methodology emerged. One that ensured the successful development of a business narrative with impact. Be it a campaign story, a customer story, a target audience story, a brand story, an organizational story, a corporate story or a masterstory. Building further on that methodology I developed StoryMeter®, a diagnostic tool that measures the power of story and its impact on business. In addition I have developed the StoryMaster® program, a 3 day workshop to equip and license you to use the MasterStory® methodology and diagnostic tool. In the weeks, months and years ahead I will post (infrequent) updates on my work, my methodology and my own journey. So make sure to check this page every once in a while. Or subscribe to our newsletter.
Why the name change?
After long and careful deliberation I decided to change my brand name Narrativity into MasterStory. The amount of work behind the scenes is staggering. The amount of details is overwhelming. Nevertheless I feel I made the right decision.
The name Narrativity was born somewhere in 1992 when I was a guest lecturer at the University of Amsterdam Film & TV department. My course was about the structure and mythology of the Hollywood Movie, a subject I wrote my master’s thesis about in 1988. The course needed a short and succinct title. And I named it: Narrativity. A technical term that refers to the universal capacity and need for storytelling and myth making as a primary means of making sense of the world we live in and the lives we lead. And that was what the course was really about.
So when I launched my own company I used the name Narrativity.
But from day 1 it was a struggle.
It is almost impossible to pronounce.
Try spelling it over the phone.
And deal with people asking: “Negativity? Why would you call your company that”?
Or people asking: “Nativity?” What, are you a missionary or something”?
But what troubled me the most is that I named my company after the instrument I use. An instrument, admittedly I am wildly passionate about. But an instrument nevertheless. Once in a vivid daydream I saw myself as a carpenter with a really, really, really beautiful hammer. Not just any hammer. No, a very special hammer. The wood wasn’t ordinary wood. No this wood came from a 1000 year old oak tree in Nottingham Forest where the ancient druids stirred their magic potions and chanted their prayers. And the metal head wasn’t your garden variety stainless steel. No this metal had been forged by a sword smith whose ancestors had forged swords for the ancient samurai.
My hammer is a very special hammer.
And all the time my client is looking at me, finally saying: I just want a picture hung on the wall…..
In other words, as beautiful and special my instrument may be, at the end of the day it is all about the end result, all about the value you deliver.
All this hype about storytelling these days is about presentation and communication techniques. But without a story there is nothing to tell and all we’re left with is sound and fury signifying nothing.
There are the stories you tell for entertainment, to make a point, or to connect with others. But then there is the story that defines you, that drives you forward and that governs your decisions and your actions. That story is your MasterStory.
And that is why I changed the brand name into MasterStory®!