Michelangelo said, “Every block of stone has a statue inside it, and it is the task of the sculptor to discover it.” If you look at one of Michelangelo’s unfinished sculptures, you can see this process at work.
I believe that every individual, product and organization has a great story inside, and it is our task as communicators to discover it. The concept of chipping away to reveal what’s inside rings true in my experience. Many of my projects involve taking a client’s “block” of communications, searching for the core of their story, and carving away everything else.
I also like Michaelangelo’s use of “discover” (or at least the Italian translation of discover). We often associate discovery with finding something new, but the word’s roots suggest otherwise. Since “cover” is to conceal, “dis-cover” is to remove the cover, or in other words, to reveal.
This definition of discover reminds us that the answers we seek are often within our reach; to find them, we just have to keep chipping away.