Do you remember the last time you were captivated by a story? Maybe it was a novel, a movie, or even a presentation at work. Whatever it was, one thing is for sure: a good storyteller can make all the difference.
But what makes a good storyteller? And how do you avoid becoming a bad one? Here are some key points to consider:
Good storytelling is about connection At its core, storytelling is about connecting with your audience. A good storyteller knows how to tap into their audience's emotions, whether it's by creating suspense, making them laugh, or triggering empathy. This emotional connection is what makes a story memorable and impactful.
Good storytelling requires structure A good story has a clear beginning, middle, and end. It has a structure that guides the audience through the narrative, making it easy to follow and understand. This structure is essential for keeping your audience engaged and focused.
As Daniel Pink, the bestselling author and expert on motivation, says: "Story is the language of the brain. It's how we make sense of the world. So if you're trying to persuade someone, and you're using facts and figures and bullet points, you're losing them."
Good storytelling is authentic Authenticity is key to good storytelling. Your story needs to be genuine and reflect your personality and values. It's essential to be yourself and not try to mimic someone else's style. This authenticity will help you build trust with your audience and make your story more relatable.
Good storytelling is memorable A good storyteller knows how to create a story that sticks in the audience's mind. This can be achieved by using vivid imagery, memorable characters, and unexpected plot twists. The goal is to make the story so memorable that your audience will want to share it with others.
Bad storytelling lacks connection, structure, and authenticity On the flip side, bad storytelling lacks the key elements that make a good story. It may be disjointed, confusing, or fail to connect with the audience emotionally. It may also lack authenticity, leaving the audience feeling disconnected and disengaged.
Bad storytelling can be avoided The good news is that bad storytelling can be avoided. By following the principles of good storytelling – creating an emotional connection, using structure, being authentic, and making it memorable – you can elevate your storytelling game and become a better storyteller.
Storytelling is a skill that can be learned Finally, it's important to remember that storytelling is a skill that can be learned. It may come naturally to some, but with practice and guidance, anyone can become a good storyteller. So don't be discouraged if you don't feel like a natural – keep working at it, and you'll see improvement over time.
In conclusion, good storytelling is an art form that can captivate and inspire your audience. By creating an emotional connection, using structure, being authentic, and making it memorable, you can elevate your storytelling game and become a better storyteller. Remember: storytelling is a skill that can be learned, so keep practicing and honing your craft.
Want to learn to tell a great story to your audience? Reach out and let me show you how.
Mark Westbrook - Speaking Coach