Storytelling tips

Inspiring storytelling with personal stories

Successful organisations have a dream, a vision, an enticing future. The question is how do you achieve that future and, more importantly, how do you communicate this? Based on the practical situation we can provide you with specific storytelling tips.

Storytelling in a modern context focuses on the question of to what extent you are able to have your employees, clients and other stakeholders believe in a beckoning vision of your company's future? How can you connect them to this? How can you activate them for this? Storytelling is universal, but not every story is the same. On this page we provide some smart tips about the corporate story and storytelling.

Organisation story

Storytelling is essential for human life. Telling stories - the ordering of events in our work and life - is the main way people give meaning to their existence, pass on knowledge, learn behaviour and understand their past and future. Our daily life offers us all the opportunity to be storytellers. Storytelling is the inspiring force behind presenting ourselves and the story of the organisation.

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The power of connection

People are looking for an emotional connection. Successful companies are companies with a story. A story that is credible and, at the same time, so inspiring, appealing and recognisable that people are keen to identify with it. A good story brings together and connects a varied group of people, allows people to see things differently, inspires/touches, links the past with the present, outlines a path to the future and is also relevant for the outside world.

Good storytelling stories for organisations

  • Employee stories: successes, ambitions, changes, passions
  • CEO stories: circulating stories among employees, approach, successful decisions
  • Organisation stories: founders, pioneering spirit, striving for perfection, desire for originality, innovative capacity, entrepreneurship
  • Milestone stories: about success, setbacks, takeovers, mergers, new managements, foreign adventures, crises and serious challenges that have been overcome
  • Product stories: the product it all started with, the growth, the brand
  • Client stories: the perception of clients is essential

Brand story

Touching people not in their head, but in their heart. That is what makes a strong brand. That presupposes an identification which goes beyond just the quality of a product or service. Employees and clients want to be touched emotionally. Not on the basis of a ‘marketing strategy or analysis of target groups’, but a confidence-building, positive brand story. Make them participants in your story, a power source of emotions and the fire will start to burn.

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One Story. One brand.

The capacity to stand out helps in a competitive market. Your personality makes you special. A good brand story is the connection between how your client sees, experiences and publicises your brand. It is told via a richness of impressions, ideas and dreams which have been combined in the brand over the course of time.

  • Clearly record personality, positioning and perspective in a brand story.
  • Create a narrative core position and a consistent story in which everything exudes your brand.
  • Couple the brand story to a specific storytelling content and social media strategy.
  • Get to the essence and touch the hearts and minds of your clients.
  • Tell authentic and convincing client and employee stories.
  • Build up a storytelling community around the brand.

Identity stories

Core values tell people what your organisation stands for. It gives your employees something to emulate and something for your clients to trust. Core values which you jointly support provide the foundation for future growth. Choosing a limited number of core values helps you stay focused and what you stand for remains clear for employees and stakeholders.

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Bring core values to life

When the core values of your organisation have been determined is when the most important work begins, namely bringing the values to life. Values are, in themselves, words which everyone can interpret in his or her own way. Placing the values in the story gives them direction and meaning.

Personal story

The most powerful story is the personal story. Who else is better equipped to narrate your experiences than you yourself! A personal story always focuses on the context in which and for whom it is told. For example, a birthday party is a completely different setting from a conference. Ideally you, the storyteller, are able to switch easily during your story: from national to emotional, from factual to perception, from abstract to personal and vice versa.

Tell your own story

The power of the personal story is: credibility. It creates trust and establishes a connection between you and your listener(s). A personal story conveys who you are and what you find important. The power of a personal, authentic story is that people trust you. Because they trust you, they are also prepared to trust your company more.

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You can tell a story in three ways: with facts, values, or by saying something about who you are. With ‘facts’ you create less contact and trust. The best way to connect people is with ‘value stories’ or ‘personal stories’ and the best story is the story that touches people and that they want to share. A good story not only intrigues people but also connects them. Storytelling helps connect people - from client to business contact and from family to stakeholder - more strongly to the story of the company and the brand than can be done using standard marketing. We can all build up trust and be a storyteller. How do you get started?

Storytelling tips on how to start

  • Storytelling does not start with the teller, but with empathising what intrigues and touches the recipient. Emotion, authenticity and credibility are essential in that respect.
  • Show who you are by telling a personal story. Tell the story which expresses what you think is valuable in life or within your organisation.
  • Formulate a clear core message: what do you really want to say? You should also tell your core message directly and clearly and not beat around the bush.
  • In your personal story you should use a clear structure, and a couple of anchors for the story alongside a convincing core message.
  • Avoid jargon. Tell your story in a way that is easy to understand from the perspective of the recipient(s).
  • Dare to zoom in on relevant details and emotions which fit in with your core message.
  • Practise your story on a colleague, friend, or family member. Check how it comes across, whether they understand it, where they lose interest and incorporate their feedback into your story wherever possible.

The storytelling top tip

Storytelling scans are a quick and inexpensive way to gain clarity and direction. Request a scan today so that you too can create clarity for the future of your story.

About Storytelling People

For more than 30 years Storytelling People has been recording corporate stories and bringing them to life with storytelling and community building.

Our success stories

Storytelling makes the abstract corporate story accessible in stories by and for people.

Heineken: de magie
Friesland Campina: gezond groot
NS: de vooruitgang
Sligro: typisch Sligro
Randstad: shaping work
Sustainability: dedication

Request a storytelling scan

Storytelling scans are a quick and inexpensive way to gain clarity and direction. Request a scan today so that you too can create clarity for the future of your story.

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