“Ever sat in a show and tell that’s fallen flat? Had trouble selling the value of your work within your organisation, or struggled to sell yourself at interview?
The stories that resonate, that travel, and build connections with others are those which are memorable and compelling. As Bobette Buster says in Do: Story, How to Tell Your Story so the World Listens, the stories that we tell need to “pass on the spark” – to leave the listener with something memorable that they can take forward in their work or tell others.
As agile and digital professionals we sometimes struggle to communicate the complexities and nuance of our work, and in our detail leave our listeners cold.
Remember when we were children and stories meant so much to us? Stories were how we communicated about how we saw the world. But like other subjects at school (like art or sport) for many of us the pervading inner voice says “I’m not a good writer / artist / footballer” rather than doing the activity for the fun of it, to build connections with other people and try. This is in direct opposition to our agile principles of iteration and improvement.
But there are structures we can use to help us tell compelling stories, and like anything, storytelling is a practice, you get better the more you do it.”