Storytelling wizards

Harry Potter is rushing through the Muggle-world train station when he walks into a pillar. He’s on his way into the wizard’s world. You could say he can’t see until he can believe. Or that sometimes the facts, the literal things in life, get in the way.

In an era of 140-character messages, Riley Gibson has written a thoughtful post on why business leaders should master the art of storytelling. (His allusion to Harry Potter is not only contemporary but spot on.) Here are three of his reasons, with a few editorial comments tossed in for effect:

  1. Stories are memorable. Stories not only hold people’s attention during the presentation but remain with the person long after the facts have fled.
  2. Stories travel further. It’s easy for stories to go viral because we like to tell and hear them.
  3. Stories inspire action. That’s because people inspire action. Not presentations or mission statements or strategic plans with gobs of information about monitoring and measurement.

Time to pack the suitcase. Leave the slides at home.