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Storytelling: 4 Tips on Connecting with Potential Clients

  • By Connie Deianni
  • |
  • April 25, 2016

Is storytelling a forgotten art or has it morphed into a more unique offering that now includes digital, cell phones and social networking instead of just a chat around the fireplace?

I attended a presentation the other day by Jeff Olsen from Thomas Arts. Jeff spoke about storytelling and creating an emotional connection with your audience, whether that be a client, a colleague, a family member or an arena full of people. It certainly was an impactful presentation. I learned a lot and began thinking about what makes a great story. How do you create an emotional connection through storytelling?

1) Keep it simple. The best stories are simple and have a compelling message that creates an emotional response in the listener. Remember, the listener owns the emotion; as the story teller you can only paint a picture; the listener adds the color.

2) Make it interesting. Include those tidbits that created an emotion in you, regardless of how insignificant it may seem to you. If you felt an emotional response; a tingle, a tear, a shiver, a smile or a bell laugh then likely, you will help your audience feel the same.

3) Include the hard stuff. Be vulnerable, allow your listener to experience the painful, uncomfortable moments with you. As you talk about the hard stuff, a certain trust will develop that allows you to communicate to connect on a level that makes the story impactful and memorable for your listener.

4) Understand your audience. Who are you speaking to? Do a little research beforehand. If that isn’t possible, assess the setting. What’s the demographic, the setting, is there a theme, how much time do you have, what do you want them to remember about their experience with you?

Remember, a picture is worth a thousand words. With these 4 storytelling tips, you will successfully paint that picture!

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Author Bio

Connie Deianni founded Corepoint as an extension of her passion for designing and delivering employee engagement programs to large, small, and non-profit entities. Corepoint represents 30+ years of employee engagement in the financial services and non-profit industries. Her experience began as an entry-level front-line employee in the retail banking world and evolved into a consultant/designer for employee engagement programs focused on mentoring and career development. Through trial and error coupled with the ability to “really listen,” Connie has honed best practices which support mentor programs; programs that enjoy longevity past the initial launch period and continue to flourish where the mentor concept ultimately becomes the culture of the organization. As an experienced presenter, Connie also provides engaging, dynamic, and interactive presentations focused on mentoring, career building, networking, professionalism, and employee engagement. These insightful presentations leave her audiences with best practices, tools to implement immediately, and the creativity energy to make changes in their own organizations.