The Art of Giving Introductions: Or How to Tell Your Authentic Story

As part of our TOSB Conversations series, we spoke to Communication Coach & TEDx Ambassador Ajit Sharma on how we see and tell our own life stories and why it matters. Here’s a key takeaway from the session – Ajit’s powerful framework to share your authentic story & create your narrative for the future. We hope you find it useful!

Text Box: The ‘Past – Present – Future – Values – Stories’ framework is designed to help you appropriately assess and explore your own identity, i.e. identifying everything that makes you as YOU. We sometimes under-estimate our achievements, ignore our thoughts & opinions and undervalue our future goals; and the reason you need to do this assessment is because you must pen down all the experiences & thoughts that have brought YOU where you are today.

This is the first step towards building a personal/business identity so that you create an introduction that truly represents YOU.

The goal is to spend enough time thinking about the questions asked in this workbook. Once you complete this activity; you’ll have a lot more clarity about your personal and/or business journey and you’ll also have a starting ground to start writing your introduction.


There are no right or wrong answers in this activity, and you do NOT have to necessarily answer all the questions asked here. Please answer only those questions that resonate with your thought process and that encourage you to contemplate deeper.

Step 1:

Write down everything important about your PAST

  • What were you doing before your current job/business?
  • What skills have you acquired in the past?
  • What events or milestones were most important in your career? Why?
  • What were some of your achievements or highlights of your career?
  • Did you fail at any point of time in your personal and/or professional life?
  • Did you face any extraordinary challenges to fulfil your goals and aspirations?
  • What were these failures & challenges and how did you overcome them?

Share some stories or anecdotes from your PAST 

  • Do you have any anecdotes or stories to highlight these significant milestones, achievements, challenges, failures?
  • Tell us in detail what happened in that story or anecdote?
  • How did you feel before and after this story?
  • Did this change you in anyway? Why and how?
  • What was the biggest lesson or take away for you through this anecdote or story?

Step 2:

Write down everything important about your PRESENT

  • What do you do now? What would you like to be known for?
  • What problems or challenges are you solving for your customers or clients?
  • How do you solve these problems or challenges?
  • What abilities or skills do you have to solve these problems or challenges?
  • What do you like or dislike about your current life?
  • Are you creating or making something new?
  • What is that one big problem or challenge you still haven’t solved and you’re still working on?
  • What that one special thing about your company or organization or the culture within your organization?
  • Are you learning or unlearning something in life right now? 

Share some stories that are currently happening in your life at PRESENT

  • Are you witnessing or going through something really special in your life right now? Think deeper and share
  • Has anyone at work recently influenced you or moved you strongly. Why and how?
  • What story are you writing for yourself at this moment?

Step 3:

Write down everything that you think about your FUTURE

  • How do you see your professional future?
  • What kind of outlook do you want to develop in future?
  • Who do you want to be with in your dreams or future?
  • Answer the following questions:
    • Just give me a few more years and I will be able to ____
    • I wish I could _____
  • What is that one thing you need to live your dream?

Share a glimpse of the FUTURE that you are creating for yourself:

  • Will people’s lives be affected in future by the virtue of what you do and how you do it?
  • Do you think you could be a part of someone else’s story in future?
  • Think of a scene from your envisioned future and tell us how does it look like?

Step 4: Values

What VALUES do you think define you?

  • What principles or code do you keep in mind when you make important decisions in life?
  • Complete the following sentence(s):
    • I will go to any extent at work if I feel ___
    • I can let go of work, but will never compromise on ___
    • Respect for me means ___
    • I will work for free if ___
    • When I take any risk, I think of only one thing ___
  • Why do you hire or fire people?
  • How do you choose your clients or people you work with?
  • Why do you like or dislike someone’s work?
  • What virtues do you appreciate in other people and why?
  • What is that one principle you can never let go of at your work life?
  • What things would you like to keep to yourself always?
  • What is that one work ethic that you can never give up and why?
  • How do you like to learn? People or experiences? Actively or passively?
  • What’s the best thing money can buy for you?
  • What is more valuable than money?
  • What makes you strong or what makes you weak?