“I booked the training package because I had known Ann for many years, she is a dear friend and the amazing thing about Ann is that she is a brilliant storyteller, and I wanted a bit of what she has.
I didn't think that communication was my one of my strengths, and I was in a very senior leadership role at that time that required a lot of presenting in front of big teams with expertise that I was very aware I didn't have. I wanted a way to develop my knowledge and skills of presenting such that I would be more engaging and more purposeful. We worked together on a project where I wanted to enhance the storytelling element; an important end-of-year presentation to the entire company,
I think critically what I gained was a foundation of confidence. It was a confidence built of an understanding around what good storytelling looks like and how I might be able, at some point, to become a good storyteller. What was really helpful was having a framework that I might draw upon to deliver better and more engaging, purposeful presentations. Day to day, I feel more confident in communicating now, telling a story and engaging with people. And I love Jeopardy and I introduce a bit of that now and again!
I think there was a nice cadence to the way the training was played out. We spent a number of sessions meeting in person, and then online, Ann was very good at helping me learn at the right pace, she used my own brand and how I might describe myself, as a vehicle to introduce concepts around storytelling and to build that understanding and confidence over time.
Because I already knew Ann, it felt slightly uncomfortable at first, perhaps because the process involved a degree of self-reflection, and I've already described myself not as a great communicator, so getting out my feelings and thoughts is sometimes challenging for me. But Ann is a brilliant enabler and she has a lovely, gentle style.
The 3 step process is a real help to me. I definitely still use it. I still don't feel a natural affinity to storytelling, so to have a template that helps me think about how I might communicate better, is really helpful.
The coaching helped me think differently, where it didn't come naturally to me, and I didn't understand the logic or the rationale. I guess as a pretty logical, scientific type person, it's useful for me to have a roadmap.“
What are your top tips for storytelling?
“Understand the capacity of your audience, and what their context is.
Be clear when you are ending.
Frame your story.
Chief Financial Officer for Fresca Group Ltd