Sunday, September 30, 2007

Storytelling for interest

Storytelling continues to evolve as important aspect in communications - not just presentations, but even leadership development, blogs, and gaming.

A challenge is ensuring the story connects with the audience. At Villanova University, student guide shows campus location where lore says Jim Croce inspired lyrics for song "Time in a Bottle". Boomer parents all know Jim Croce; Gen-Y potential students don't. The location of national association headquarters in Chicago is office building in opening to first "Bob Newhart Show". I'd show building picture to new members (my age or older) in orientation class and it's interesting -- not at all notable when class not old enough to know the show. Both stories can be retold in ways that capture interest and imagination of those hearing them. For example, part of lyrics to "Time in a Bottle" could be read at location, and explain former student became famous, then died before song #1. Location of association headquarters building across street from Chicago Tribune, next door to Wrigley Building and near famous shopping - so "location, location, location" is better story -- or show YouTube clip of TV show's opening (since has catchy music) and noting HQ building.

As we lead, inspire, teach, guide those who listen to or read our stories, ensure material has elements with universal appeal -- its level, drama, context.

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