Updated: Jan 15, 2020
By Dominique Oyston
We all know of stories that have endured throughout history, from Joan of Arc to Mary Magdalene. The right story will last hundreds or even thousands of years. But what you might not realise is that stories are the most powerful tool available to your voice to call in your tribe in business.
Forging connection through stories
In earlier times, we were born into a tribe. There, we shared stories around the fire as gifts of warmth, connection, community, belong and soul-sharing. Storytelling was part of everyday life.
Nowadays, we’re not born into tribes. We begin alone, with no circle around the fire. But we can still create a deeply connected tribe by calling them in through stories.
Storytelling is an art. Stories that are well told will delight people endlessly. Of all of the animals on earth, it is humans who can speak. And what we do with that voice is tell stories.
Unfortunately, most entrepreneurs are never taught this art of storytelling. But the right business story can be used forever, over and over.
Storytelling for your business
To build your tribe, you need to learn to extract your core stories. Then you need to use those stories to define your brand. It can be great fun uncovering these and finding ways to use them.
But do you know what we often do?
So often we avoid storytelling because we feel inadequate as storytellers.
Storytelling is an art, but it’s also a skill. It is something you learn to do. So take your time to learn, and find places to start telling your story.
One way to uncover a great story is to imagine that you are telling something that happened to you as a kid as if you are playing Pictionary or having to describe what happened to a group of people who don’t fully understand your language. This helps you find the fun, the drama and the entertainment value in the story.
Another way to find a story is to remember a challenge or a struggle that you found a solution for. Let your story describe the steps you took to overcoming that challenge. Dive deep into how it felt to experience each step from struggle to victory. Name those feelings.
There are so many types of stories to choose from. Magical stories, humorous stories, challenging stories, teaching stories, inspirational stories, metaphors and even heartbreaking stories. These are just some stories that might be within your business. But no matter which you choose to share, I advise that you master the art of telling them with heart and style. Because telling a story can be magical for your business!
Once you’ve found your stories, there are so many ways to use them. In business, storytelling can be used to:
Support your data by making the data less boring
Have a specific purpose related to your business outcome
Engage, inspire and connect with your audience
Showcase your authenticity
Make sure you’re making the most of your stories by using them to support your business and call in your tribe.
Rehearsing vs ‘winging it’
One thing that has always fascinated me about what people say about speaking is that many say, ‘I’m better when I just wing it when it comes to speaking’.
To be honest, I was completely gobsmacked when I encountered this attitude at first. Because I come from a background of the theatre and singing, I knew that going in without a thorough rehearsal leads to a weaker performance where you’re terrified by a lack of preparation. I thought of all of those hard-working event managers and organisers dealing with the possibility that the speakers they've booked might just be 'winging it' through their presentations.
The right practice is there to support your voice, not undermine it. Rehearsal is not about preventing your intuitive flow and ability to connect with your audience or cramping your style. Instead, it is there to give you even more confidence, to enhance your natural style.
You can rehearse your story to keep it natural and make it slick by practising your delivery at triple speed. This will help to show up the parts where you don’t really know what you want to say and improve the impact and dynamic.
Another rehearsal tip to make your story more connecting is to practice as if you’re telling it to a group of children (or to a real child if you have one handy!). This will train you to make your stories more imaginative and engaging while keeping it natural.
Through rehearsing and practicing storytelling, you will grow your skillset and become a better artist of voice. So believe in the power of practice AND believe in the power inherit in your voice. This will make you feel glorious when you share your stories!
If you'd like to learn more about how the power of your voice can help to build your business and unlock your creative gifts, I invite you to join my mailing list here:
Or my facebook group - 'Divine Feminine Messengers' here https://www.facebook.com/groups/327329514332337/