Plots vs. Persons
2 Jul, 2020

Consider which pitch you’d rather explore by reading the book or watching the movie:

  • “Someone is kidnapped and dropped into a Brazillian civilization that has never been contacted by outsiders”
  • “How a person just like you transformed during a bizarre set of circumstances”

The first one is all plot and setting, the second one is all character with literally zero information about the plot and setting. Obviously these are improved when combined:

  • “How an average American transforms when dropped with nothing into a never-before-contacted Brazillian tribe”

A story without a character is simply a plot. Develop the who before you develop the storyline.

Can be used for all pitches, presentations, demos, and so on, like this:

  • WHO am I speaking to? Investor, company, secretary, executive, etc.
  • What are THEY like?
  • How does MY PLOT (pitch, demo, etc) relate?
  • Invite them on a journey as persons instead of inflicting your plot upon them.

Share with your network:

More to explore


Cadence allows people to walk beside you. Cadence is the alternative to control: the more people you add, the better you need to be at it, so you don’t have to build control. It’s the opportunity to keep joy and ownership at the core of a business.

read more

On Clarity

“I thought I was clear” is something an authority figure will say pretty frequently. What I’ve noticed is that usually the leader/parent is clear on importance, not on action. “I’ve been talking about this…” doesn’t...

read more

Selling to the wrong customer profile

As soon as you suspect that you didn’t make what you have for the person you’re talking to, you need to let them know. Based on what I’m hearing, I actually don’t think we designed this for you…Here are the reasons you probably...

read more


Family tech, neuroscience, communication, product management, growth

A synthesizer of neuroscience, classical rhetoric, philosophy, 5,000+ hours at whiteboards, high stakes presentations, Fortune 10 consulting, and startup growth.

Copyright © 2020 Isaiah McPeak