How to Know if You're a Good Storyteller

One of the many definitions of a great presentation is that it’s essentially an inspiring story that moves you so much you decide to take action and make a change in your life. But ask yourself this… how many presentations have you attended that actually made you change something?

Probably not that many. The reason for that is simple… not everyone is an amazing storyteller.

But the purpose of this post is to show you that anyone can become one! Let’s help determine if you got what it takes to deliver inspiring presentations weaved into stories that help you advance your career.

Do you have what it takes to tell engaging stories that capture people’s attention? Do you have the personal traits, communication skills, and business vision to channel your audience’s interest into value for your organization?

See if you recognize these qualities in yourself.

Are you an empathetic listener?

You need to be able to understand, connect, and relate to the thoughts, feelings, and most of all the needs of your audience. Empathy is a common and key trait that you can find in every good storyteller.

Why is it essential? Because stories are meant to engage people’s emotions. That’s why they work so well in convincing you to change your mind on specific topics.

Empathy is a human trait that lets you feel the discomfort, pain points, or relief your audience feels around the topic of your presentation. This way you know how to craft and deliver your story in a way that triggers the right emotions you want your audience to experience during the presentation.

Can you add emotion to a boring topic?

Even the greyest topic can be presented in a colorful way that gets your audience excited about what you’re talking about. You cannot afford to be boring during your presentation. That’s why people who know how to add a bit of drama, comedy, or adventure are considered natural storytellers.

Why is this essential? Because emotion is what triggers people’s decisions, most importantly – the buying decisions. So if you manage to invoke the correct emotion through your presentation, you have a better chance of leaving a memorable mark in people’s minds regarding your brand.

You can try using a number of emotions. For example, one of the most powerful ones is fear. Fear of missing out on something, or the fear that a certain negative outcome will occur if a specific action is not taken.

Can you capture your brand in an authentic way?

A great storyteller is always genuine and trustworthy in talking about the core values of his organization. You know that the brand story is not about telling people what they want to hear, or the way you’re selling the products or services you offer.

Why is this essential? Authenticity is what builds respect and credibility with your audience and good storytellers always know how to put the human side of a brand under the spotlight.

This happens by finding the one unique characteristic of the brand story. If you’re aspiring to be a great storyteller, you need to become great at finding what sets you apart.

Do you know how to use humor strategically?

Storytellers know how to entertain their audience without breaking their focus on the main storyline. By adding a touch of humor at the right moment you don’t distract people but actually give their brain a refreshing moment so they can enhance their focus on what’s coming next.

Why is this essential? Humor helps you bring people closer to you as a storyteller and to the main message you’re trying to convey with your presentation.

Natural storytellers can always make you smile or break a laugh regardless of how serious the topic is. No matter how many intelligent or interesting people there are in the room, the one with a sense of humor will stand out the most.

Do you know how to inspire people?

Great stories always have a deeper meaning to them. Something of value you can take away and apply to your way of life or way of thinking. It’s what storytellers use to inspire their audience into taking their final call-to-action.

Why is this essential? Every great story is supposed to be an experience that takes the audience on a journey that resembles the daily struggles that prevent them from reaching their goals. In the end, the final outcome is what inspires the audience to make a change using the main value proposition that you as a storyteller are presenting.

Are you one of those people who can inspire others to make better decisions? Then you have what it takes to be a natural storyteller who can influence entire audiences.

How does all of this help your presentations?

To put all of these qualities into context you need to understand how important storytelling is for your presentations. If you recognize yourself in this, then you can be a natural storyteller who can easily persuade people into getting on board with your ideas or using the products & services your brand provides.