Storytelling is the most underrated skill [among entrepreneurs].

~ Ben Horowitze, famed venture capitalist

Storytelling is the act of framing an idea as a narrative to inform, illuminate, and inspire. From Steve Jobs to Sheryl Sandberg to Richard Branson, successful leaders study and practice the art of storytelling in order to attract top talent, increase workforce engagement, and launch movements. In fact, in our work at Aspendale helping clients with their workforce communications, storytelling is almost always a component of the overall strategy. [click to continue…]


John Kotter QuoteStorytelling is a key tool for leading change. In episode 102, “Storytelling for Leaders,” Amanda Marko joined us to discuss why it’s such a powerful tool and provided tips for putting it to work. In this episode, Amanda returns to talk more specifically on the “how” of storytelling for leaders, and she explains four storytelling frameworks to lead change:

  • Connection story: overcomes natural skepticism by letting people know that you are like them
  • Influence story: helps to change someone’s mind
  • Success story: a more personal and memorable version of a case study
  • Clarity story: an organizational narrative or strategic story

Amanda Marko is president and chief connection officer of Connected Strategy Group, which helps leaders communicate their business strategy and engage stakeholders during times of change. Amanda is one of only a handful of people globally – and the first person in the U.S. – licensed to deliver Storytelling for Leaders, which teaches business leaders a proven method for creating messages that resonate, build engagement, and drive change.

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102: Storytelling for Leaders: How to Influence, Engage & Inspire | with Amanda Marko

December 15, 2014

Storytelling is an effective leadership tool for change management, engagement, and bringing the business strategy to life. We discussed this tool back in episode 52, “How to Use Stories to Engage People.” Today we’ll dig deeper, with the help of someone whose been teaching the art and science of storytelling to leaders from across the […]

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052: How to Use Stories to Engage People | featuring Steve Kloyda from The Prospecting Expert

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Who would you say has had the most influence over people in the last several decades? Politicians? Teachers? CEOs? Perhaps Hollywood and the rest of the entertainment industry have had the most significant impact on a greater number of people. Consider this: After Jaws hit theaters in 1975, shark hunting increased dramatically, to the point […]

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Hit the Nail on the Head: 5 Guidelines for Effective Storytelling

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Stories are the single most powerful weapon in a leader’s arsenal. ~ Howard Gardner, Harvard University In my previous blog post, I discussed four primary reasons a well-crafted story can be powerful. The operative term, of course, is well-crafted. To influence people, your story doesn’t have to be perfect, but it does need to be crafted […]

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The Power of Story: 4 Ways Stories Influence People

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Having a story today is really what separates companies. People don’t just wear our shoes, they tell our story. ~ Blake Mycoskie, CEO of Tom’s Shoes Why are stories such effective tools for influencing people? There are four primary reasons a well-crafted story is powerful. An effective story not only instructs; it also entertains. It’s […]

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How to Tell Stories That Stick, Part 2: The SUCCES Model [video]

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Last week’s video gave you a simple approach to holding your audience’s attention. In this video, I want to take you a step further with a more advanced model that is presented in the book Made to Stick, by Dan and Chip Heath. This week, we’re talking about how to tell your story in such a […]

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How to Tell Stories That Stick, Part 1: Forest AND Trees [video]

December 11, 2012

Some leaders know what they’re doing, but can’t get others to follow them. They have a lot of good information, but can’t get people to listen. Or maybe, they just can’t hold anyone’s attention. You might be an authority in your field and have all the answers, but if you’re too boring, no one is […]

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