The more you look, the less you see. It depends on who is looking, why, who or what they are looking at, what they are seeing, or what they want to see. If you are in business and think nobody is looking at you and telling stories about you, you are in trouble. Times are becoming harder, and your stakeholders are now looking critically at how you run your business, some with binoculars. Behind those looks are many untold stories.

Your stakeholders are looking at your business expecting results, satisfaction, rest and possibly entertainment. And they are asking questions: What do they want to know? It depends on who you are, what you are doing, what they want, and the profile of those looking at you. They want to know who you are, what you are doing, whether you playing according to the rules of the game, whether you have integrity, how entertaining is the game, and whether they are getting value for money.

Your stakeholders are asking many questions you are not hearing. And they are amplifying those questions with stories. They want answers, not just the type we see in company annual reports, media reports and PR campaigns. Your stakeholders are looking at you to make sure you operating your business according to the rules, and that their lives and businesses will improve if they patronize you.

The more you look, the less you see. Is it really true, or is it an irony that is meant to draw our attention to the real thing: That is look well, think critically, get revelations and tell correct stories. That is why the strident calls for transparency at all levels is getting louder. The governed and citizens of many nations are forcefully demanding accountability from government leaders.

Labour unions are becoming more vocal and aggressive; wives are demanding more freedom and asking husbands to be more democratic; students and their parents and sponsors want better deals from schools; patients now look critically as doctors diagnose and prescribe medicines, even declining injections. Instead they want tablets and syrups, especially for children.

Consumers are becoming more critical and demanding better deals; environmentalists and oil producing communities are increasing the heat on oil producing companies and demanding more; while shareholders of companies are becoming more difficult to satisfy. Everybody is looking, telling stories and they want to know what is happening, and what is in it for them.

In every sector of the economy, interest groups, stakeholders and admirers are looking, asking questions and making more demands. For those looking at your business, are they seeing more or less. If less, you may be in trouble. If they are not looking at all, it means something is wrong with your business. Looking and seeing well is now a big challenge for every business because stakeholders are curiously watching, interpreting developments, asking questions, telling stories and making demands.

The more you look, the less you see. That is a challenge for transparent marketing and should be your new mantra. This is the time for you to take a hard look at your business, change gear and tell good stories to remain in business and grow. Do you just let you shareholders look? Please help them to see well and interpret properly. Tell them your corporate and brand stories. Encourage them to ask questions, provide answers, increase their visibility, and make sure they see more, as they look more. Tell them stories about you operations, your problems, your victories, your vision and mission, where you are coming from, and where you are going.

Make sure you tell stories that will give them value for their attention and also entertain them. When you do them, your stakeholders will truly say about your business that: The more we looked, the more we saw, and we are satisfied.

Eric Okeke is a storyteller, editor, business writer, motivational speaker and author of the best selling book: I Want a Husband. He is one of Nigeria’s most experienced financial journalists. He has published several articles in local and foreign publications and in websites such as, and He is currently running Infomedia Company, a media consulting and information marketing company. Visit his blog at

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