Preparing to present a change programme and you're worried about your impact?
One clear message
Make it personal
Play with the senses
Know your audience
You have a story
Make it visual
Here are Martijn's 8 storytelling tips to rock your presentation.
Clients we have worked with to practice storytelling
A clear and coherent story starts with getting your messaging right. You need to have a solid story to tell. But in order to get the desired impact you are looking for, take a look at these eight tips.
1.Make contact with yourself.
Rule number one is to make contact with yourself. So before you start to tell any story make sure you take some time to stand firmly, take a deep breath and feel your body. By doing this you will prevent yourself from entering the presentation tunnel.
2.Make sure you have one message that will stick.
Tip number two is make sure you focus your energy on one clear message. Of course, your program has tons of details that are all important, however your presentation can easily become complicated. Make sure your audience has one clear thing they will remember when they walk away. Mission accomplished.
3. Make it personal!
When you start your presentation try checking in with the audience. Show that you're vulnerable by sharing how you feel... slightly anxious, nervous to be on the stage? By sharing this you will feel more comfortable and you will also make it easier for the audience to relate to you and see you as a person.
4.Play with all the senses.
A story that works your senses is a story that will have more impact. Be creative when telling the story and pay attention to tickling the audience's senses. What did you see, how did it smell or taste? Use sensory cues in order to bring your story to life.
5. Know your audience.
"Hi Jan, this video is for you!" When you prepare for your presentation try to connect with your audience. Our customers are typically people running change programmes working at large firms, so we try to tailor our content to them. So, know your audience and share information that is relevant for them.
6. You have a story.
When I do storytelling trainings people often ask me where I get my stories. While I'm off climbing mountains, they are stuck in a stuffy office space, nothing too inspiring about that. Stories are everywhere and you have a story as well. Take some time to walk through your day, there will be cues for interesting stories to tell.
7. Be honest, don't lie to your audience.
We can tell great stories about how open, transparent, honest or inclusive we are but when we walk around the workspace we see the opposite: closed doors, colleagues not talking to each other or a homogeneous group of colleagues. This is the problem in corporate storytelling; when we aren't honest, we will lose our credibility. So be honest and share the truth, people aren't shy of work that still needs to be done.
8. Make it visual.
When you're at a party enjoying your evening and dancing and someone comes up to you talking about agility, optimising processes or organisational development the first thing you want to do is walk away. No one wants to hear a corporate story, we all want to hear stories that paint a picture that allows us to experience what the other has been through. When you tell a story make it as visual as possible. Paint a picture for your audience with words, at Ink Strategy we use drawings to do this. In any case make your story visual.