The power of storytelling

I went for a pint the other night with my fellow Inchture resident Kev Anderson. Kev is the founder of The Story Edge, where he specialises in helping people tell their stories. He’s also one of the nicest people you will ever meet (despite being a Dundee fan!).

Over a couple of bottles of Sam Adams (yup, craft beer has made it to the Carse!), we talked about the power of storytelling and how stories permeate all areas of our lives.

In the work that I do, stories help to bring experiences to life. It’s much easier to empathise if you can frame the experience in a story. Equally, stories are a great way to get your message across, whether that’s in a business meeting, or as a public speaker.

I was talking to Scottish Enterprise Chairman Bob Keiller last week, and Bob spoke about the magic of storytelling. We talked about how good we’ve become in Scotland at pitching an idea, however what’s often missing is emotion.

Bob had been judging a pitching competition recently. A couple of people had delivered technically competent pitches, but without any real passion. So Bob thanked them, and then asked them to tell him the story behind their idea. That’s when they came to life and the emotion shone through!

Stories can also help to make a blog post more human. This is something that Mark Schaefer talks about, when he encourages us to ‘be more human’, in our content. You can see the difference this makes in Vicky and Yva’s posts.

Do you use storytelling in your work? If you’re not, have a look at Kev’s site and join his group on Facebook. You’ll not only be amazed at the results, but you’ll also have a lot of fun along the way.

4 thoughts on “The power of storytelling

  1. Thanks Ali. A great reminder of the power of story-telling. Kev indeed is a master at that. I’ve tried to bring more stories into my own writing. Reading Vicky’s and Yva’s personal stories has re-emphasised how powerful that can be.

  2. I use stories in my work to either compare similar experiences when chatting to prospective clients and to help a client change their mindset. One day last week, I had a 15min window between a client and a consultation with a prospective client and decided to have a coffee, using my Aeropress, and it wasn’t until we sat down that the caffeine kicked in and it turned out to be the most memorable consultation I’ve ever had! In a good way though! I couldn’t stay seated and I found myself becoming more animated as I described how I believed that exercise should be like play and went into more detail about how I could help my client. I think she was stunned by our chat but more importantly, she came in for her first session yesterday and thoroughly enjoyed it 🙂

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