Mandy Collins & Associates

I'll help you find the right words

Come, let me tell you a story

No doubt you’ve heard of corporate storytelling, but what does that really mean? Well, it means to use story techniques in an organisation to deliver business outcomes – and it’s something that can transform your reports, emails, presentations and even more strategic documents.

Why story techniques? Well, because stories are an ancient form of communication among humans – so they help us to frame things, and we recognise them instinctively. They’re also a lot more compelling than a bunch of boring facts.

Human beings have been telling each other stories since they figured out how to make a campfire, and it’s no different around the boardroom table. Tell a good story, and you’ll have their attention. And in case you thought this was just the preserve of sales and marketing, even CFOs are starting to acknowledge that numbers by themselves aren’t compelling. Explain the story behind the numbers, however, and you grab people’s interest.

So, what are the essential elements of a story?

  1. A beginning, middle and end – but they don’t have to be told in that order.
  2. Something unusual, interesting or surprising to hook theaudience.
  3. An element of suspense – don’t give too much away too early.

If you can start to think of your reports, emails and presentations as being storytelling exercises, containing those three essential elements, you could just transform the way people receive them.

Is it simple? Yes. Is it easy? No. But that’s where it’s useful to hire a professional writer, because we writers are soaked in stories. It’s our stock in trade.

Do I know such a writer? DO I? Of course I do. And I’m ready and waiting to help. All you have to do is drop me an email on mandy@mandycollins.co.za. And no, I don’t mind how badly written it is – because otherwise, why would you need me?!

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