Since the dawn of time, humans have always used storytelling to pass down tradition, beliefs, culture, art, and history across generations, even millennia. Storytelling is an amazing art, science, and skill that can move crowds to accomplish what an individual cannot do alone.A famous British historian and writer, Winston Churchill, once stated: “Of all the talents bestowed upon men, none is so precious as the gift of oratory. He who enjoys it wields a power more durable than that of a great king. He is an independent force in the world.”
The art of storytelling is how we utilize our communication skills to share our message in a manner that truly reaches, persuades, motivates, and inspires our listeners to take the desired action. When you learn to do this in your career and life, countless doors of opportunity will be opened to you. What are some immediate steps you can take to develop, advance, and craft your storytelling skills for your career? Here are three:
3 Crucial Steps
1) Know your audience: It is absolutely necessary that you are clear on who your audience is. Many of my students will often share with me that they are not too sure who their audience is; this is wrong! You NEED to know who they are!
Ask yourself: Who is my audience? What is their purpose for coming to listen to me? What do I want them to remember and learn? What action do I want them to take? Think of how differently you would present a new, scientific idea to a group of young, new college students compared with experts in your field. This absolutely changes the entire way you present your ideas, the values that your audience likely possesses, and how you structure your entire presentation. The clearer you are here, the more you will know what to say and how to say it!
2) Learn how to structure your ideas: In addition to knowing your audience, you need to construct your ideas in a logical, coherent, and comprehensive manner that “rings” with your audience, makes sense, and helps them know and “feel” what they need to do. All of my clients, and I, have attended countless company meetings that simply drag on, seem to have no purpose other than just waste time and energy, and ultimately bring no meaningful results.
This is due to the poor structure of ideas and no clear plan. When you have a clear plan, purpose, and structure your ideas accordingly, you are going to connect so much more with your audience. This not only helps them to better understand but also can help you accomplish your goal of motivating them to believe in your vision and take action.
3) Study and learn from the experts: As you continue to develop your own storytelling and communication skills, never fail to keep learning. One of the keys to constant growth and improvement is to always study and learn from the experts. As you do this, you will expose yourself to diverse styles and flavors of storytelling: emotional, motivational, logical, humorous, inquisitive, and so many others!
Then, you can experiment and develop your own style that you enjoy. The more naturally you are able to express yourself using a style you really enjoy, the more you’re going to connect with your audience, communicate your message successfully, and get the desired results.
Storytelling is an absolutely crucial skill to master if you want to improve your overall English communication skills for your career (more about that in this article: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/3-keys-mastering-business-english-communication-carlos-w-/). Therefore, by you investing the time, energy, and effort into improving this skill, you can get closer to becoming the best version of yourself and successfully communicate your message with your own listeners! You learned, now GO and take action!
These are all things I help my own clients with in my English communication skills digital course, The Career Accelerator for Life Science Managers. If you want to learn more, click here.