About the Workshop
When we began teaching storytelling nearly two decades ago, we encountered a fair amount of skepticism that stories were a truly useful communications tool, especially for organizations engaged in the serious work of social change. So, early iterations of our workshop were equal parts evangelism and skill building. As it turns out, in the continuing story of this workshop this would be Act I.
As the number of nonprofit non-believers declined over the years, we redesigned our workshops to spend more time focusing on the kinds of stories organizations need to collect, and how they can use those stories to change beliefs and behavior for the greater good. But that wasn’t the end of this particular story either – just Act II.
Recently, an increasing number of organizations have expressed interest in a different kind of storytelling training. More and more, we’re hearing, “I know I need to tell stories. I just want to get better at the physical act of standing and telling them!” And that brings us to Act III: “ALOUD: A Workshop for Live Storytelling.”
What will you learn?
ALOUD is a highly interactive workshop of 3 hours or more (depending on the size and needs of your group). During the workshop, each participant will develop and share one story about their organization’s work. Our curriculum covers the following topics:
- The Structure and Qualities of Effective Stories:Before we can work on the art of delivering a story, we have to ensure that each participant has a solid story to tell. This segment reviews the basic architecture and distinguishing qualities of “dramatic narrative,” i.e., stories which are specifically designed to engage and motivate an audience.
- Why Beginnings and Endings Matter Most:Even with stories as short as 2-3 minutes, the first and last words out of the storyteller’s mouth play crucial roles in the success of their story. This segment will show examples of strong beginnings and endings and will provide time for participants to craft these crucial sections for their stories.
- Being Specific, Concrete and Visual:When stories aren’t supported by slides or video, the only thing the audience has are the words coming out of the storyteller’s mouth. This segment teaches participants how to tell stories that can be easily visualized – a critical factor if audiences are to become engaged.
- Being You, Only Better:The final segment will focus on basic public speaking skills including eye contact, vocal control, and podium presence. Each storyteller will have the opportunity to practice the delivery of their story and receive feedback from the facilitator and other participants.
Who is this workshop for?
ALOUD is for nonprofit leaderswho speak at conferences and staff retreats, report to government bodies, or solicit major gifts and want to deliver compelling stories as part of their presentations.
It’s for board members or trusteeswho are passionately committed to their organizations but need to improve how they tell stories that bring that commitment to life.
And it’s for the people you serve. If you occasionally ask your clients to share their stories in public settings and you want to ensure that those stories are told with the authenticity and passion they require, ALOUD can help here, too.
In short, ALOUD is for anyone who stands up to speak – often without slides or video or sometimes even a microphone – and wants to know that their story will be heard.
For additional details about the workshop, please call us directly at 323.464.3956.