Everything we do and participate in is revolved around a narrative. From the time we wake up and flip on the radio or turn on the news we’re participating in a culture of storytelling. When we listen to our podcasts, read our magazines and books, when we chat around the water cooler, scroll through our social media feeds, and when our friends and family come home and tell us about their day, we’re playing a part in a narrative. “Tell me a story,” is not a request that dies with childhood. As humans (no matter our age) we need stories. They’re our heartbeat and our life force — the keeper of our collective experience and humanities’ ultimate legacy.
So what does this mean in the business world, and why should we incorporate storytelling skills into corporate learning? Historically, the workplace didn’t allow room for the kind of human-centered, emotionally-driven content we now know drives lasting engagement. It was too touchy-feely, too personal, too “messy.” But research has continued to prove that stories make our brains work differently.
Tying a to human experience, whether it’s a common struggle or acquiring a new skill set, improves the chances the information will be remembered because it touches something in us… we relate with the feeling it impresses on us more than the words itself. Storytelling is the art of influence, impact, and persuasion,” says ELM Learning’s VP of Learning Experience Design, Greg Kozera. “Storytelling is the way we share our human experience with one another to form a deep, long-lasting connection.”
It’s Kozera’s mission to help clients tell their company story in the most compelling way possible. “No matter what industry you hail from,” Kozera says, “strategic storytelling is a must-have if you want to create learning with any sort of long-term impact. It’s the secret ingredient to truly successful learning design.”