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Using Great Storytelling To Grow Your Business… Really?

March 12, 2012

Recently I read an article titled as above at FastCompany

It’s an interesting article a must read. I’ve talked about storytelling earlier as well on my blog.

The FastCompany article talked about two concepts and I’ve visualized it below:

1. Ensure that you trigger the senses.

LOTS - Language of the senses

2. Use a five step structure throughout your talk, presentation, meeting etc.

“They call it the "story spine": reality is introduced, conflict arrives, there is a struggle, the conflict is resolved, a new reality exists. These two tools caused a profound shift in our abilities to tell effective stories.”

They author does give an example of the same in the article, and it’s quite good, read it. However, I wanted to capture it in a way that I would remember and hence I illustrated the 5 steps using the below visuals.

Lets say you’re walking down a cobbled street and you see and literally smell the stench of a homeless person on the street

Reality Introduced

Yep most people will empathize and feel pity, or might even feel disgust at the sight.


Conflict IntroducedYou might face a conflict in your mind, wondering if you should open your wallet and part with your money $ or possibly just look the other side and walk away…




You might have further arguments against the idea of helping them at all.








Conflict Resolved

Or you might notice that the sign he’s holding up shows that he’s willing to work to survive and you might step up and help him.

This ultimately could change the reality into something new, helping you both breathe a sigh of relief.

New Reality

The above ideas could be used in a number of situations. However, I feel that considering that a large portion of the brain is dedicated to visual processing, it might just be a good idea to focus a lot more on the visual aspect in your communications and story telling. Moreover, providing visuals enables one to not only understand but also retain the information far longer and hence it’s more effective. Moreover, using LOTS(Language of The Senses) might not be most appropriate in specific kinds of business contexts, for e.g. lets say you’re explaining a manufacturing business process or the way a computer program works. In these cases visuals work brilliantly, however using the other senses would not make sense. On the other hand using their 5 step process might be useful to provide more structure to your talk/communication.

What do you think? Do share your experiences and thoughts…

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