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How-To Guides

3 Days to Better Storytelling - Day 1: Get Inspired

Note from Pam: Many of our fellows have found storytelling to be a powerful tool for talking about their work and why it’s important. Recently the Leopold Leadership Program started collecting resources to help researchers tell their stories in compelling ways. Welcome to “3 Days to better storytelling,” a 3-part blog series with tips and ideas for strengthening your storytelling skills starting today.

Day 1: Get inspired

It seems simple enough: if you want your ideas to stand out and be heard, go out and tell your story. Try googling “effectiveness of storytelling,” and you’ll find a wealth of examples from businesses, nonprofits, health organizations, schools, and other entities about how storytelling helped people absorb and act on new information for change.

Why are stories effective? What happens when you incorporate them into your work? Here are a few perspectives:

3 Days to Better Storytelling: Day 2 - Prepare

Inspired by our fellows’ successes in using stories to promote change, we recently started collecting resources to help researchers tell their stories in compelling ways. This is the second in a 3-part blog series, “3 Days to better storytelling,” with tips and ideas for strengthening your storytelling skills, starting today.

Believe: Can you sing “The Itsy Bitsy Spider”?

Day 2: Prepare

On Day 1, we heard from professional storytellers about how storytelling can make the hard job of communicating complex ideas easier. But what if you don’t see yourself as a storyteller? Does the thought of having to tell a story about your work make you shudder? Here are three things you can do to break through and get started.

3 Days to Better Storytelling: Day 3 - Practice

Freytag’s pyramid, annotated by Samantha Tetangco

This is the last of our 3-part series, “3 Days to better storytelling,” tips and ideas for strengthening your storytelling skills. You may also want to check out Day 1: Get inspired and Day 2: Prepare.

Day 3: Practice

If you’ve been looking for your moment to give storytelling a try, today could be your day. You’ve heard from experts about how and why stories engage audiences. You’ve been listening for stories in your daily life and thinking about what works, and what doesn’t, in grabbing and keeping your attention. You’ve also tried out a few simple experiments to get to know your audience. You have a good sense of who they are and how your message connects to what they care about.

Now all you need is a few tools for crafting the story that will carry your ideas.

5 Essential Elements of Impactful Design

5 Steps to a Kick-Ass Presentation

In my yearlong exploration of science communication, I focused on learning more about communication in the forms of: storytelling, presenting, and design. Here I focus on the skills I have found to be useful in creating impactful presentations.

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