Stories With a Splash: 3 Tips for Surprising Your Audiences

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Stories With a Splash: 3 Tips for Surprising Your Audiences

As most of my friends know, I’ve been following the Golden State Warriors, a professional basketball team, as they’ve moved closer to securing an NBA Title.  By all accounts, the team is outstanding: creative ball-handling, precision shooting and solid defense earned them the best regular season record in NBA history.  But what makes the Warriors so popular among sports fans and the general public alike?

The answer is obvious to anyone who watches the team play: the element of surprise.

The Warriors win games with surprise offensive bursts (i.e. Steph Curry’s 17-point overtime performance) that leave their opponents flat footed and their fans in awe.  To help you tell stories that take shock and amaze, here are “3 Tips for Surprising Your Audience”.  Follow these guidelines and you’ll have your audience cheering you on in no time.

1. Unpack Expectations.  The first step in creating a huge surprise is to unpack any expectations surrounding the surprise in question.  What did you anticipate would happen in the situation?  What actually happened?  Surprises exist in the space between expectation and reality, so take time to unpack both elements.

2. Build Suspense.  Once you’ve laid out all of the events and expectations, begin to reconstruct the surprising moment with the goal of highlighting the discrepancy between what you were lead to believe and what actually happened.  At every turn, ask yourself: “If I were an audience member, what would I be thinking?”.  If you (the storyteller) can “figure out” the surprise, it’s unlikely you’ll be able to pull one over on your audience.  Allow the suspense to build organically by slowly ratcheting up the stakes.

3. Offer A Final Surprise.  After you’ve paid off your audience with the surprise you promised, the last step is to provide a surprise after your audience believes the moment is over.  The final surprise turns the initial expectations on their head and leaves the audience wanting more.

Pretty surprising, huh?

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NYC: A Fresh Batch of Storytelling Workshops is Available Now

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NYC: A Fresh Batch of Storytelling Workshops is Available Now!

By Daniel Schwen (Own work) [CC BY-SA 2.5 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.5)], via Wikimedia Commons

By Daniel Schwen (Own work) [CC BY-SA 2.5 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.5)%5D, via Wikimedia Commons

New York is the city that never sleeps, so why slow down this summer? Get a head start on your fall projects, business events, or startup launch by brushing up on some useful skills. Storytelling for Entrepreneurs: Presentations to Elevator Pitches is a great place to start.

In this class, you’ll learn how to utilize storytelling techniques in business settings. You’ll begin with the three types of business stories and learn tips for telling them effectively. Relaxation techniques will be taught to help improve your ability to perform. We’ll also cover ways to become a better listener, and much more.

This workshop is available now throughout the summer at General Assembly.

There is no success without a story. Sign up to reserve your spot today!

http://ow.ly/OZS5o http://ow.ly/i/bzx4K

Going Up in Chicago: Storytelling for Entrepreneurs Workshop

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elevator pitch

Wednesday, June 3rd 2015

6-8pm

Join Andrew Linderman at General Assembly Chicago for 

Storytelling for Entrepreneurs: Presentations to Elevator Pitches

About This Class

Not all elevator pitches are created equal. You may think you’ve got a can’t miss pitch, but if you can’t explain your idea in a compelling and interesting way, your message may get lost in translation. In this class, you’ll learn how to utilize storytelling techniques in business settings. You’ll begin with the three types of business stories, then learn tips for telling them effectively, relaxation techniques for performing them, ways to become a better listener, and much more.

Takeaways

  • Learn tips for uncovering stories in everyday life.
  • Discover ways to make your story more persuasive.
  • Find out how to use stories in pitches, presentations, and meetings.
  • Learn ways to incorporate stories into mission statements and product launches.

Prereqs & Preparation

No prerequisites. Students should bring a pen and paper to complete the handouts and assignments.

Not in Chicago? Can’t make it to this workshop? Click here for an up-to-date list of upcoming classes and events

May 28: Storytelling for Entrepreneurs

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The Next Storytelling for Entrepreneurs: Presentations to Elevator Pitches is coming up on Thursday, May 28th at General Assembly

Not all elevator pitches are created equal. You may think you’ve got a can’t miss pitch, but if you can’t explain your idea in a compelling and interesting way, your message may get lost in translation. In this class, you’ll learn how to utilize storytelling techniques in business settings. You’ll begin with the three types of business stories, then learn tips for telling them effectively, relaxation techniques for performing them, ways to become a better listener, and much more.

Takeaways

  • Learn tips for uncovering stories in everyday life.
  • Discover ways to make your story more persuasive.
  • Find out how to use stories in pitches, presentations, and meetings.
  • Learn ways to incorporate stories into mission statements and product launches.

Prereqs & Preparation

No prerequisites. Students should bring a pen and paper to complete the handouts and assignments.

RSVP today to reserve your spot!

Can’t make it to this one? Check out upcoming shows and workshops from Andrew Linderman & The Story Source here.