I’m working with Victoria Ward and her colleagues over at Sparknow at the moment evaluating a set of stories for their likely impact. We do a lot of story impact assessment at Anecdote because when we collect stories we always end up with too many to use in a workshop and therefore must select a sub-set. Sometimes culling is done by our clients, sometimes by us. But regardless of who does it you need a set of criteria to make the selection.
So here’s our assessment criteria for likely impact. I should say, however, that it can only be an assessment of likely impact because people are affected more or less by stories based on their experience. I’ve told the one armed karate kid story many times and mostly people find it amusing and insightful. On one occasion, however, a woman who was listening to the story teared up.
If your story rates well on all these criteria there is a good chance it will be memorable and persuasive which means it’s likely to be retold. And when that happens then the story has real impact.
About Shawn Callahan
Shawn, author of Putting Stories to Work, is one of the world's leading business storytelling consultants. He helps executive teams find and tell the story of their strategy. When he is not working on strategy communication, Shawn is helping leaders find and tell business stories to engage, to influence and to inspire. Shawn works with Global 1000 companies including Shell, IBM, SAP, Bayer, Microsoft & Danone. Connect with Shawn on:
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