Iowa Media Company Embarks on Story Exploration

Iowa Media Company Embarks on Story Exploration

Ongoing grassroots stories to explore gifts, possibilities

A media company serving Iowa City and Cedar Rapids, IA is embarking on a story exploration of people’s experiences with the many emerging possibilities in the company and its community.

Axiom News has been hired to connect with staff and partners of The Gazette Company and publish their stories internally and publicly.

Cathy Terukina is a member of the team who sparked the initiative.  “We have known for a long time that our relationship with the community needs to change. We have to pull the curtain back a little bit,” she says.

Like Cedar Rapids, The Gazette Company is navigating through tricky social and economic changes. For people to respond together Cathy figures there will need to be room for imperfection and open conversation.

“We tend to over-engineer, make sure everything is perfect, that all the risk is taken out before we communicate.”

By publicly sharing stories about the character and gifts of people in the organization Cathy hopes camaraderie and connection will develop.

“The stories are going to be the everyday voices. It’s not the company line. There are really great people here and great things are going on,” she says.

“These will be employee’s stories. You get a completely different picture of your co-workers when the little things come up, about kids in school, a trip to the lake. A lot more energy, cohesion and caring comes from understanding who people are and where they came from, their stories.  It gets easier to band together and create together.”

“With stories coming from all corners of the organization we will start to see ourselves as something bigger. How do we reach every corner so we can hear all the voices?”

Axiom News builds and maintains grassroots news programs for organizations across Canada, the U.S., and Belgium. Peter Pula of Axiom News says his team focuses on a gifts and possibilities approach to story finding as a culture builder.

“By authorizing and amplifying as many authentic voices as possible we always discover new things. Usually what we expect to find is not at all what we actually find. A big part of this work is to stay present and open to what emerges. My favorite part of this work is the surprises and seeing what they turn into,” he says.

You can comment on this story below, or e-mail peter(at)axiomnews.ca.

Writer Bio

Peter Pula's picture
Peter Pula

Peter Pula has been exploring the pathways to social evolution since founding the Grassroots Review in his hometown of Peterborough in 1992. Since then he has served on the boards of civil society and arts organizations and served as board president on two of them.

He has been actively involved in federal politics and led a corporate communications firm. Axiom News was incorporated under his leadership in 2009 and went on to establish the practice of Generative Journalism in an international arena.
 
In 2015, Axiom News founded and funded the Peterborough Dialogues in its hometown. The Peterborough Dialogues hosted over 350 deep community dialogues, established and refined hosting arts, and has had lasting impact in the Peterborough community. For this work in community, Peter was awarded the 2017 Brian L. Desbiens Community Service Award by Fleming College after being nominated by his peers and members of the community.

Peter works in support of deep democracy and passionately but lightly-held spaces for citizen-led community development. He believes that artfully hosted dialogue and generative media making are together a necessary social innovation for cultivating local-living abundance.

Peter is an artful dialogue host, newsroom director, team leader, mentor, trainer, and consultant. He can be a supportive force in the cultivation of initiatives in your community, network, or organization.

He has been invited to host dialogues, summits, workshops, and learning circles in Canada, the United States, Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany, and most recently in France.

If you would like to enjoy an exploratory conversation about engaging Peter in appropriate ways to enliven or enlighten your initiatives, you can reach him directly by writing to peter@axiomnews.com.

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