Storytelling as a Leadership Strategy

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Author: Future Manager Research Center

The art of storytelling as a teaching tool has its roots in distant times in which both customs and wisdom were handed down orally. However, not everyone is aware of its potential as a corporate communication strategy.

Even in today’s world, stories are extremely important: for example, in the business world, they are transmitted in the form of case studies. Advertising and marketing campaigns also arise from very specific plots and storylines. Hence, almost all successful companies have a compelling story behind them.

Oratory and narrative art can also be applied to leadership. Those who have strong communication skills are often points of reference in work contexts, as well as models to follow for the youngest. Brilliant leaders draw on their wealth of experiences, whether positive or negative, to convey their values or a certain business vision and to be an inspiration for the entire work team.

They are not limited to giving simple instructions or orders, but are able to create a vivid narrative arc, capable of capturing the attention of employees. These are not mere abstract stories, they are rather real teachings that have practical application in reality and, for this reason, constitute moments of sharing on a personal level, but above all opportunities for professional growth.

Therefore, storytelling departs from conventional learning methods, based on directives and tasks to be performed, or on mentor-apprentice support. Contrary to what happens through telling experiences, classical training requires a generally slower and, therefore, less immediate absorption of information.

Regardless of the type and purpose of the narrative, a leader who shares engaging and exciting stories is able to influence the listener’s behavior and that is why managers and CEOs cannot afford to underestimate storytelling as a strategic corporate communication tool.