The power of storytelling

Stories spark emotions. We have an intuitive, emotional side as well as a deliberate, rational side to our character. Too often in business we only try and connect with people on a rational level but this isn’t enough to actually change how people behave. People may understand what you want them to do but if they aren’t emotionally engaged they just won’t do it! Storytelling gives leaders a way of inspiring colleagues in a way that appeals to both sides of our character.

blog clive

It is of course not just in business that story telling has power to change.

I have just spent a great day at Bampton Primary School in Devon, telling the story of Impisi. Every child in the school over the course of a day heard my story. From 3 year olds in nursery, to 11 year olds in Year 6 they listened, responded and asked perceptive and meaningful questions. Such is the power of story telling that they engaged with Impisi the hyena and Nkosi the lion, understood that it is a story about humans and our ideas about difference, friendship and facing challenges together. The older children, in Key Stage two, after listening to the story worked with me to recreate the movements of lion hunting, hyenas and meerkats. We then combined movement and a reading of the story in assembly.

The day was designed to add to the topic of Africa that had been ongoing in the school, and to encourage the children to consider how we are different, how friendships – however unlikely – are valuable and how our behaviour impacts on each other.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *