Story Telling| During YOUR BOARD Presentation or to INSPIRE DECISIONS...
Storytelling is an important component to effective board presentations, effective communication or keynote! It creates a sense of MYSTERY and something that your audience can connect with! From ancient times it's been a great tool even for knowledge sharing, skill enhancement or even to get the attention of your audience. Stories give speakers the opportunity to tell personal stories that relate to the audiences' experiences, thought processes, or values. It also has a better recall value. Many years ago I remember in one of my BNI (Networking forum) presentations, I shared my DRAMATIC STORY of being the THIRD GIRL CHILD, before I presented THE WHY of my business; even today some of my dear colleagues from the forum; remember why my passion to support people trying to ACHIEVE-DESIGN success in their life is so important!!
Thus storytelling is one of the few human traits that is truly universal regardless of age, gender, culture, and language. Stories help us connect with our audiences in a way that charts, graphs, statistics, and bullet points cannot. There are a bag full of tricks and oratory skills that you can take advantage of to make a killer presentation. However nothing will engage your audience and drive it, TO ACTION more than a COMPELLING STORY!
6 important aspects of storytelling in a presentation are:
Creating a PROTAGONIST -HERO -A central character or protagonist who journeys to his GOAL, in spite of all kind of challenges or evils in his path. This final accomplishment after braving all odds is a picturization of the reality that almost every person goes through, in some form or other; thus it's a promise you create for every person privy to the plan. For example our ancient stories of Mahabharata, or modern day superheroes like Spiderman or Superman etc all are stories of VICTORY of GOOD over EVIL, which is what we want to see around us constantly, to validate that our good actions are always rewarded.
Stories TRIGGER EMOTIONAL RESPONSES - When stories make people feel things like trust or kindness, the brain releases oxytocin, which motivates cooperation by enhancing empathy. This means that stories make people more likely to adopt new ideas and act based on those ideas. For example, by telling the story of a small, struggling, local business owners... who grew their company and managed it more effectively using Cisco, the company was able to humanize information about technology and make their benefits more relatable.
Creating CONTRASTS - In a dynamic world of politics, foul play and hero's struggle the audience is apprehensive and yet hoping for the victory of the good and fairplay. Thus it's important to depict the reality and then navigate the canvas with the best solutions. A classic instance is that of Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” speech
Personalize Storytelling to EVOKE EMPATHY - So, while you’re not the hero of the story you are telling in a presentation – you could be the mentor to that hero. Thus, it’s important for you to incorporate personal stories or anecdotes about your own experience in order to create common ground with the people listening to you. Common ground creates empathy, and this makes people more likely to listen to – and take action after your presentation.
Know THE OUTCOMES YOU WANT - When the goal post or targets are clear you can DIRECT -DESIGN - DEPLOY your vision -mission -action path. To move people in your team -clientele, board -investors; analyse your goals, define your outcomes and master your storytelling. This also enables you to plan better outcomes through the stories.
Action YOUR ENERGY & STORYTELLING STANCE - When you are in the process of storytelling, your energy will determine the energy of your audience; so prepare to be in a state of vibrancy that would encourage others to reciprocate -participate and there is a strong call to action.
In any organizations success of teams are determined by the leadership communication, and storytelling could be a GREAT TOOL if you are a leader who needs to impact the top line-bottom line, inspire team members, motivate senior management to take a decision, wow your clients etc.
To know more about storytelling techniques do explore the following reads: