Yada, yada, yada…Yawn!
What’s your story and are you telling it in a way that makes people want to listen? Are you torturing your audience with what you want to tell them, or are you engaging them with stories relevant to their pains, emotions and interests that they want to hear?
Three suggestions for telling your story:
- Adapt your story to each audience. Strip away all the dry facts that won’t immediately resonate with this audience with their particular context. Tell stories that describe relatable people and problems and let the stories describe who you are and what you do. Begin today collecting a wide-range of re-tellable stories. Your credibility emerges from the connection you build not endless, meaningless credentials.
- Have fun and invite your audience to have fun with you! Our entire communication delivery changes when we tell a story vs. drive home bullets on a slide. Practice going beyond your comfort zone. Reference a popular movie line or scene. Describe a personal experience to which everyone can relate. Describe a world event or business news story in a way that makes it thought-provoking for your audience. Grab the audience’s interest with an unexpected fact that is surprisingly relevant for them.
- Begin with their story. “But enough about me, let’s talk about you. What do you think about me?” This Bette Midler line from the movie “Beaches” relates the truism that people aren’t really interested in you, unless you’re talking about them! Even when a prospective client invites you to make a presentation about your capabilities, they’re really only interested in how those capabilities relate to solving their problems. When you start with them — ask conversation-starting questions that get them talking, listen brilliantly and inject short, relevant and insightful anecdotes — you immediately capture their interest. Your story comes across in how you engage them in talking about their story.
So…what’s your story and how are you telling it?