5 Must-have Anecdotes for your Arsenal

If you want to make a go of this public speaking thing….if you want to deliver memorable presentations and you’ve done your homework – you already know that weaving personal stories into your presentation is key to creating connection with your audience.

Storytelling is presentation dynamite.

When you’re asked to speak on the spot, having relevant and relatable stories fresh in your memory to share, can build a whole new level of respect and interest with your colleagues and clients.

Your 5 Must Have Stories

  1. Your most spectacular fails – first rule of presenting, is be human.  Be willing to share your fails AND of course what you learnt from them.  Rest assured, 99.9% of the time, your audience will be laughing with you, not at you.
  2. Catalysts for change – times when a situation became untenable and you took action to change it. e.g. changing your diet, your lifestyle, your job, your relationships?
  3. Obstacles overcome – building a business with no money, dealing with a difficult colleague, coping with loss, coming back from an injury or illness – obstacles are everywhere and sharing yours has the potential to inspire another human being to tackle theirs.
  4. Your WHY – if you are not one of the over 44 million people who have already watched Simon Sinek’s TED Talk on How Great Leaders Inspire Action …do yourself, your future audiences and anyone you meet at a networking event a huge favour.   People will be willing to trust you more, when they know WHY you do it.
  5. Your inspirations – who are the people you admire and why.   What did you read in their latest blog or book or hear in their podcasts that has changed the way you think or act around a certain subject.

Have more than one go-to story in your library

If you’ve been in a relationship for any length of time, chances are you’ve heard your partner tell one particular story at a party over and over again.    The first time you heard it, it was hilarious – even the second, third and eighth time were enjoyable…but, you know, there comes a time when all good stories need to be removed from the shelf, to make room for new ones!   So make sure that you’ve got a number of stories that fit the above 5 and switch them up!   

Look for lessons and add to your arsenal often

Life is happening to you, every minute of every day.  Every day is another page in your story – but most of us are just skimming through it like a 5 year old magazine in the doctor’s office. 

Great stories don’t have to be life-changing, there is magic in ordinary moments.  At the end of the week, look back at what’s occurred – did you witness an act of kindness on your morning walk, did your team solve a problem or make an un-makable deadline, did you read a book that changed your view?  Is there a message in one of these moments that would make a good anecdote somewhere down the track (maybe even in a job interview!).

Your stories make you uniquelooking more closely at your every day experiences gives your own life more meaning, as does sharing them with others.   

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1 comment
Julie watson says July 15, 2019

So true!! Great suggestions Ruth … essential preparation 😀

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