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If I asked you to recall the most memorable speaker you’ve seen, who springs to mind?
Some of my favourites include the late Sir Ken Robinson, Brene Brown, and Margaret Heffernan. What makes them, and likely the ones you have enjoyed too, so compelling is that they are also great story-tellers.
Stories are one of our most powerful mechanisms of persuasion – and a great emotive tool – that can quickly turn a boring presentation into one that engages and inspires.
Broadly speaking, there are four types of story themes:
These are your ‘spotlight stories’ – derived from years of practical experience before success; resilience, failure, courage, and curiosity. Brief but powerful, your spotlight stories shed light on your authenticity as a speaker. The deeper the story, the deeper the audience is able to connect with your message and move toward point B.
When you know what type of story you’re telling, make sure you hit all five of these essential elements to create impact:
Many of the people I work with are reluctant about sharing stories, believing it too risky to share their tragedies or lessons. They fear ruining their credibility. However, those stories of wonderment, humiliation, loss, and eventual triumph are defining moments that deeply resonate with others.
In ‘Business Storytelling for Dummies’, Karen Dietz outlines three types of intimacy in storytelling (and I’ll clue you in to which one you should be aiming for):
My business storytelling programme enables people to access and share those vulnerable living room stories authentically. The best stories are painful and beautiful in equal measure, and audiences appreciate your willingness to invite them in.
If you want to uncover your own living room stories and tell them with confidence, check out my business storytelling programme, or drop me an email for more.
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