Why we should always be storytellers
“If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.” Rudyard Kipling
I agree with Mr. Kipling.
Facts aren't very sticky. Stories are a much more effective way to convey information and make it possible to remember.
If I tell you about the first date with my husband, I could give you the facts:
the date (and by "date" I mean the month and year)our physical shape (height/weight/eye color)name of the restaurant (CPK)and who was the US President (Clinton).
None of that would be particularly interesting or compelling unless it somehow was relevant to the over-arching narrative of our story. The extent you would be interested in our courtship AT ALL (and I'm pretty sure it's not interesting to most of you), would depend on hearing a more compelling story.
You're more likely to be interested in the nuances which make a narrative great:
Confusion (I invited OTHER people to come along with us) Misunderstanding (He didn't understand I was confused ) Mystery (Why does she only have 9 toes??) Mistakes! (He had to leave our date early to rescue his brother who was locked out of his car.)
For the same reason when someone comes back from a fun trip,we never ask them for their flight number or the amount of miles they drove.
We want a NARRATIVE.
If you're in business and you dismiss storytelling as not relevant to your business, you're missing out on a tremendous opportunity.
Of course facts are important, but if they aren't memorable, they won't do you much good.
Give people the story and the facts will ride along!