Our five-year-old daughter Lulu loves bedtime.
Everyone who has read my inspirational book, Because I’m Small Now and You Love Me knows it’s mostly because I read her a story every night. When she was a toddler, she adored Arnold Lobel’s Frog and Toad are Friends.
Right now, we are reading Roald Dahl’s Fantastic Mr. Fox. He and his baby foxes are tunneling toward Farmer Boggis’ Chicken House.
As a business professional, storytelling should become your love too.
Some communications consultants separate out stories from illustrations, anecdotes or analogies. But, really, these are all variations of story-telling which you use to bring your theme and points to life.
Story creating tips:
¨ Make sure to have a solid beginning, middle and end. Sounds obvious, but these should be clear. Stories are mini presentations inside your larger presentation.
¨ Be descriptive. Colorfully describe the scene. Was it raining? What were the person’s emotions?
¨ Include conflict and resolution. What was the problem or the challenge? What happened? Is there a lesson from this?
¨ Connect with your audience. Don’t always talk about yourself. Sometimes that can actually be off-putting. Especially if you’re trying to persuade your audience to do something. Don’t simply use a story about how it works for you – tell a story about someone else who may be perceived by your audience as more neutral.
Begin now by creating a journal or folder of “Stories.” Jot down any and every story you can think of or come across. Pretty soon you’ll have a variety of appropriate stories to pluck to suit your needs.
Magic illusionist designer Jim Steinmeyer, in his essay Conjuring Takes a Bow, writes: “Start with a plot…it may seem daunting to you, so “Theater 101,’ but there’s nothing pretentious about it. Jokes have plots. Songs have plots. Listen to the lyrics of a good song, and you’ll find that it has a premise, development and a resolution.”
So, too, should your story. Captivating stories make every presentation or performance better.
Don’t overlook this technique.
Want to learn more about story-telling? Reach out to me and l’ll be happy to give you a free consultation!