Tags // Storytelling
Better User Experience With Storytelling – Part One
A good read on how storytelling can unite the different aspects of the user experience such as brining different perspectives together, defining the goal or defining the user (personas). However, there is another benefit that the article briefly touches upon and that is defining the journey (scenarios). It’s one thing to define a user, but a whole different perspective when you chart out the journey of this user accomplishing goals and tasks.
Robert Swanwick writes about Lt Col Karuna Ramanathan of the Singapore Armed Forces and his 2-5-1 strategy of storytelling and conducting an after-action-review.
- Who you are
- Summary of your experience
- Little finger – what parts of the effort did not get enough attention
- Ring finger – What relationships were formed, what you learned about relationship building
- Middle finger – what you disliked, what/who made you frustrated
- Pointer finger – what you would do better next time around, what you want to tell those who were “in charge” about what they could do better
- Thumb (up) – what went well. What was good.
- the most important takeaway from the effort
A Good Way to Change a Corporate Culture
Peter Bregman makes a wonderful case of highlighting the need to embed the organisation’s culture with stories of change as a way to bring about the change.
“I told him not to change the performance review system, the rewards packages, the training programs. Don’t change anything. Not yet anyway. For now, just change the stories. For a while there will be a disconnect between the new stories and the entrenched systems promoting the old culture. And that disconnect will create tension. Tension that can be harnessed to create mechanisms to support the new stories.”
NPR’s Scott Simon: How to Tell a Story
Stories that inspire action
Interesting article in the latest Interactions magazine on storytelling in organizations. Gary Hirsch and Brad Robertson describe a framework called the "story plotter" which they use to classify stories into 4 categories along 2 dimensions: positive and negative; current and what could be.
The 4 categories are:
- Stories of fact (current, positive): these are stories that have happened in the organization's past can can be used to guide its future.
- Stories of contradictions (current, negative): these are stories (or like Snowden would like to call them 'antistories) that are currently being told about how the organization is contradicting its stated values.
- Stories of possibility and revolution (positive, what could be): these are stories that can used to direct the organizations actions towards a desired state.
- Stories of fear and anxiety (negative, what could be): these are stories of concern that people have about the organization (or in Snowden's terms, the 'hell' state).
Interesting classification. Definitely not exhaustive, but like the authors argue, actionable.
New way of storytelling
Check this page out. It involves an interesting way to weave a story. "The 21 Steps is told by following the story as it unfolds across a map of the world. Follow the trail by clicking on the link at the bottom of each bubble."
The Secrets of Storytelling: Why We Love a Good Yarn
Great article from Scientific American on why we tell stories:
"We tell stories about other people and for other people. Stories help us to keep tabs on what is happening in our communities. The safe, imaginary world of a story may be a kind of training ground, where we can practice interacting with others and learn the customs and rules of society. And stories have a unique power to persuade and motivate, because they appeal to our emotions and capacity for empathy."
Ira Glass on Storytelling
Check out the one on storytelling. Thanks to Shawn Callahan.
Customer Storytelling at the Heart of Business Success
A report by Arc Worldwide’s Experience Planning group:
"The decisions that customer personas and scenarios inform may include new product and service pursuits, details of product and service strategy, marketing strategies, customer relationship management frameworks, media placement and more. Personas and scenarios tell honest stories that are sculpted from diverse and comprehensive sets of data. These stories place the customer and their wants, needs, emotions, and behaviors at the center of a roadmap that charts current and future businesses success..."
This report discusses how the Arc Worldwide’s Experience Planning group uses storytelling and multidimensional customer-based stories to provide relevance, direction, and resonance in today’s business planning landscape.
The Leader’s Guide to Storytelling
Steve Denning is out with a new book that looks at the nuts and bolts of storytelling in organizations. The first chapter of the book -- Telling the Right Story -- is available as a free download (PDF).
The Storytelling Problem
Malcolm Gladwell, in his new book Blink, takes a look at how people make snap decisions. More specifically, he describes how people make snap decisions without knowing they are doing so. And when asked to explain their reasoning, these people attribute all the wrong reasons to their decisions. This is, according to Gladwell, because we humans have a 'storytelling problem'.
"We have, as human beings, a storytelling problem. We're a bit to quick to come up with explanations for things we don't really have an explanation for."
This becomes quite apparent when we interview experts. Being experts, these people "thin-slice" most of the time, and that too, in a subconscious manner. When we interview them, we are asking them to peep into their subconscious (their "locked door") and to come up with explanations for their actions. But its difficult for experts to figure out why they do what they do -- they can't open their "locked door" -- so they end up telling us only the most plausible story, which as Gladwell describes, can be far from the truth. It is only with sustained interviews with many experts that we can get some patterns or principles of their "thin-slicing".
Leader’s Guide to StorytellingSome wonderful writing and analysis is taking place at Steve Denning's "Leader's Guide to Storytelling" weblog. In one post he analyzes why the 1984 Super Bowl ad for the Macintosh was a success and why similar efforts failed in the dot-com boom. His opinion is that the dot-com ads were 'inscrutable narratives'.
Storytelling and KMBill Ives takes a look at storytelling and knowledge management in six parts.
Storytelling for LeadersNice short piece on corporate storytelling by the author of Around the Corporate Campfire: "So smart leaders tell stories. They periodically gather the
Multimedia Storytelling: A RoadmapInterview with Jen Friedberg, a photojournalist at the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, on online visual storytelling in the newsroom. Here, Jen shares his method of creating visual stories. [thanks Interactivenarratives]
Digital Storytelling CookbookA comprehensive guide on digital storytelling. The seven design elements are of particular interest.
- Have a distinct point of view
- Focus on answering the dramatic question
- Experiment with emotional content
- User the gift of your voice
- Utilize the power of the soundtrack
- Economize the use of the visual and auditory information
- Be conscious of the pace and rhythm of your story
First Monday: Spinning yarns around the digital fire: Storytelling and dialogue among youth on the IFirst Monday: Spinning yarns around the digital fire: Storytelling and dialogue among youth on the Internet
"This paper hypothesizes that online forums and virtual communities, including message boards, Weblogs and instant messaging software (IM), allow children important spaces to share ideas and feelings, discuss issues and projects, ask and answer each other
University of Minnesota: The Elements of Digital StorytellingUniversity of Minnesota: The Elements of Digital Storytelling
The Elements of Digital Storytelling site provides us a:
- Taxonomy of digital storytelling
- Analysis of current practices
- Clearinghouse of effects research
- Showcase of innovative story forms
- Forum for discussion
KM World: Imparting knowledge through storytelling, Part 2KM World: Imparting knowledge through storytelling, Part 2
So I would argue that stories can be deconstructed, captured, indexed, analyzed and retrieved and that the sum total of all that activity, if done well, would be to enhance, not kill, the magic and power of storytelling in the corporate world. The only real danger would be from an attempt to substitute the indexed, deconstructed story for the living, breathing, evolving story.
- Read Part I
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