Discover more from Mic Check
Mic Check by Rhetoric: Volume 8
Learning the art of storytelling from our metaphorical Yodas.
Last week we talked about breaking down the work of master storytellers to see what we could learn from their communication strategies.
The good news? Nancy Duarte has already started this work for us on an episode of the Starting Greatness podcast, created by the team over at Floodgate. Nancy needs no introduction with this crowd. You could spend weeks ingesting the libraries of analyses and insight that she's made available to hopeful master storytellers, but if you want the tl;dr version (or just enough to get your wheels turning), this podcast is a great summary.
The episode is quick but absolutely full to the brim with tactical advice for your next big presentation. Here are our biggest takeaways:
Master storytellers position the audience as the central character or hero of their story—not themselves. (Whew, this is our Achilles Heel as founders when we're pitching our businesses.)
A killer presentation structure starts with a description of what is true today (this establishes a shared norm with the audience), then knocks that world off balance with a description of what could be true in the future. See: Steve Jobs' iPhone announcement.
There are so many applications for this advice: from internal team announcements to VC pitches to sales meetings. Have you incorporated best practices from story into your presentation strategies? What are your favorite resources?
📚 Open tabs
What team Rhetoric is reading during those awkwardly-timed few minutes between Zooms.
We've spoken before about the importance of storytelling for the sake of company culture; here's a podcast episode from HBR about the effect of cynicism on employees' trust in their companies.
Now that's how you tell a story: Sex, Deceit, and Scandal: The Ugly War Over Bob Ross’ Ghost.
As we launch ourselves into the chaos of fall and all of the 100mph days that come with it, I'm reminded that being busy isn't an indicator of success alone. I loved getting into the psychology of our unwillingness to be bored (even though it's often more productive than "fake productivity") and why we should address it.
✨ New ways to present better
Here's what's going on at Rhetoric this week:
You asked and we delivered: teleprompter-style speaker notes in the recording experience are now live.
❤️ Your friends can be great presenters, too
Found this useful and know someone who wants to up their speaking game? Want to help us banish the grip that flat, written text has over our lives once and for all? Or perhaps you just like cool hats?
Share Mic Check with your network and we'll hook you up with some swag.