4 Mistakes Business Owners Make in Using Storytelling

Mistake # 1. Avoid Bland and Boring Details

It is not enough to share a story. Make sure your story is engaging, captivating, and breathtaking. Consider starting with an inciting incident that shows what is at stake. Why is the protagonist so bent on going on a journey? What will happen if he or she does not get to go on the journey? Show us what is at stake. Is it property, friendship, or life insurance money?


Mistake #2. Avoid Cosmetic Telling

Cosmetic telling is full of cliches and trite information. Often, such stories are not authentic because you may have gathered them from the Internet. That is cheap! For your stories to be credible, you have to be relatable and memorable. For that to happen, use personal stories. Therefore, share stories about your personal experiences more often than using other people‘s tales.


Mistake # 3: Avoid Drifting and Dodgy Telling

If you want your audience to understand and remember what you share, avoid telling your story in a haphazard manner. In other words, you can’t wing it, unless you are Steven Spielberg. I will bet even Mr. Spielberg does not do that. To avoid drifting and telling in ways that make people yawn, craft your story with some elements of logical progression. This will help your listener or audience to lean forward and look at you in adoration.


Mistake # 4: Avoid Egocentric Conclusion

As far as possible, make sure it is not all centered around your awesomeness. Above all, do not be the hero of your story! A general rule of thumb is to choose stories that show your humanity. Stories about your failures, frailty, and foibles are music to the ears of your audience. They humanize you! Strive to choose stories that highlight lessons learned.


Which of these mistakes have you made recently? How would you approach this differently?

Thanks for sharing it with me!

Comments (2)

  • Charles Morris Reply

    Don’t spice up the story to make it more interesting. You might include a tidbit that someone in your audience knows to be wrong. You not only lose credibility with them, but they will also tell others.

    I was at a social gathering in a little town in eastern Thailand where I was stationed. Since I did not look like a local a young Asian lady asked me if I was stationed there> I assumed she was Thai and it was obvious that I was not, I started to tell her that I was a secret agent who worked in a town 80 Km away in Laos. I thought I had done a fairly convincing job with my story, but she was having none of it. She was visiting from that community in Laos!

    We had a good laugh, but my assumption brought me some verbal abuse in the Lao language.

    November 12, 2020 at 9:34 pm
    • admin Reply

      You are my guru! Whatever you say, I believe you.

      Can’t wait to catch up soon with you!


      November 18, 2020 at 8:54 am

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