17 Tips for Business Storytellers
Storytelling is a hot topic these days. Leaders, change makers, sales people and entrepreneurs all need to tell stories. Stories that engage, inspire and persuade. Here are 17 tips to help you become a better business storyteller.
1. Be visual: tell a story that your listener can see. Engage the listener’s inner
2. Make your story memorable and repeatable: in business, you want people
to (re) tell your story, right? As storytelling expert Michael Margolis says, that
retelling = free advertising.
3. Give your audience a reliable story path to follow: provide enough
information to guide them through the whole story with flow and clarity.
Do not make them guess what you mean and don’t let them get lost along
4. Understand your story fully from your omniscient (all-seeing) point of
view, and then tell it to someone who is a potential audience member.
Where are they confused? When did they have to guess about things?
5. Exclude details that don’t add value. Be tough with yourself about this.
6. Less is more, so keep it short.
7. Bring pathos: know the authentic emotional value of your story and let it
8. Mind your logos: be sure that you use a logical structure.
9. Bring your reputation, because, if they don’t know you, why should they believe
you? If you’re not well known, introduce yourself with one or two quick
lines to establish your ethos (your credibility).
10. When it comes to vocabulary, be user friendly. Don’t use words that only
11. Be humble and make someone else the hero of your story. Or paint
yourself be a flawed hero. Remember, only your mother wants to hear
about how great you are.
12. Speak in a natural way. Use contractions such as she’s, he’s, they’re,
we’re and we’ll. Avoid excessive formality.
13. Mind your voice: Practice good articulation and pronunciation. Learn how
to use volume, pace and emotional tone to express meaning.
14. If you have stage fright (fear of public speaking) get some coaching. There
are many great strategies to help reduce anxiety and channel adrenalin.
15. Practice in front of a mirror, with friends and with your phone’s voice or
16. Manage your body: excessive movement is distracting. On the other hand,
stiffness indicates terror. Find a happy, natural medium.
17. Remember that we all more alike than different. When you share an
authentic story, told well and from the heart, your audience will connect
with you and see themselves in you. What a great way to begin a