Realistic Perspectives

A concentration of material and thoughts focused around leadership, values, ethics, efficiency and effectiveness

Storytelling

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Many agree that storytelling is one of the most effective leadership tools and indeed it is. It is one of the most authentic and personal ways in which to lead people since you are able to elicit buy in from the other person through using this method. In my experience, this methodology works best when the team you are leading is facing a problem or a crisis although there is nothing wrong with using this method in more general situations or in coaching or mentoring sessions.

However, the manner in which one uses storytelling in order to inspire followers is very important. The story used should be authentic and should relate to an experience from which you learnt a very valuable lesson. Trust me, people know when you are making stuff up so don’t even think of using a hypothetical story!

Secondly, the manner in which you relate the story is as important as the story itself. You should give plenty of finer details and connect your experience with the situation at hand. Also the setting for a good story is in a one to one setting rather than in a group environment. The manner in which you relate a story would differ from person to person (different strokes for different folks as the famous saying goes). This is because each persons educational, family and work backgrounds are different the story should be related in relation to these specific factors. Knowing a bit about the person who you are trying to inspire is an obvious must if this is to happen.

Finally, eliciting buy in from the person you are telling the story to is as important as the story itself. If the person does not buy into your story, they are not going to learn from it and you probably got one of the previously mentioned steps wrong. Happy storytelling!

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Written by Talal Cassim

October 30, 2016 at 9:15 pm

Posted in Leadership

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