Cultivating Effective Storytellers

Inside each of us is a natural-born storyteller, waiting to be released.” Source: Curatti

My last blog post covered how stories are used to inform, engage and inspire their intended audiences. The common thread I’ve noticed over my many years of practice is that the storyteller starts by telling me that they have “nothing interesting” to share. By asking insightful questions and evoking the “gems,” our hour-long conversation yields more rich content than I could have imagined.

Just as one would fit pieces of a jigsaw puzzle together, my gift is manipulating words around the page to create the perfect story. When sharing a draft with the content provider, he/she is amazed by the outcome. It is written using their words and tone, but not something that could be done independently. Storytelling is an art not a science.

I remember helping a senior executive prepare an acceptance speech for a prestigious awards ceremony. She was struggling with where to start or what might be interesting for the audience. We began by discussing her background from the perspective of relatable stories that would stick Problem Solutionwith the attendees long past the event. I was delighted to hear that at the ceremony, she not only evoked laughter and tears, but also others began to share their stories, too. What a memorable moment!

Another client took over the leadership role at a young company that was not meeting its messaging objectives, which directly relates to business success. Vital Link was engaged to determine why the concepts were not resonating externally. After interviewing the senior executives individually and some investors, it became apparent that they each were promoting a different company. Therefore, we created a new company name that better reflected their services as well as a new website and collateral to support this brand. Additionally, I trained the executives and investors to each share the company story their own ways yet communicate consistent stories. The executives noted how the cohesiveness improved their business conversations.

These are just two examples, but I’ve also helped clients with their websites and intranets as the company evolves. Additionally, I’ve helped tell the delicate stories aligned with employee engagement, diversity/inclusion and wellness initiatives. Understanding what is said and how it lands with people to produce a desired action or emotion is the “vital link” that I provide.

What are your stories and challenges? I’m eager to hear from you.

By | 2017-05-24T18:21:47+00:00 January 4th, 2017|Storytelling|0 Comments

About the Author:

Karen Gobler
Karen Gobler is a change management communications expert skilled in designing and driving communication campaigns that maintain employee morale and productivity, which often decline during transition. She brings a depth of leadership experience from multiple industries, including managing successful communications through six mergers and acquisitions, numerous executive changes, brand rollouts and product launches. Karen has transformed employee engagement pre- and post-change with campaign development, situational planning and contingency strategies.