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How to use story skills for great causes

Posted by  Shawn Callahan —February 14, 2017
Filed in Business storytelling, Insight

Inspiring people

Since starting Anecdote in 2004, I’ve been lucky to meet a bunch of inspiring people. One of them is Paul Costello, who I’ve written about in my book, Putting Stories to Work. Paul is an amazing story practitioner and has been in the field for decades. He’s an Aussie who moved to America about 20 years ago. Based in Washington DC he works with government and non-profit agencies, and I can tell you from first hand experience he hosts an awesome tour of the architecture and monuments of the National Mall.

Paul applies his story skills to great causes. He’s the CEO of New Story Leadership, which unites students from Israel and Palestine to change the negative stories that come out from the Middle East.  He’s also the Executive Director for Project Change Maryland, a volunteer organisation that comes under the AmeriCorps umbrella and offers fantastic opportunities to young people.

Paul was telling me about AmeriCorps in a recent email: 

“They are deep into service and deep into stories, working with Kinder-Year 12 disadvantaged kids to help them overcome racism and being a minority, and to be more successful at learning. We have 16 members who serve full time as volunteers, they get a living allowance and an educational subsidy if they complete it, but mostly, they do it for love – it’s amazing. This is Bill Clinton’s baby and his version of the Peace Corps, save that it’s done at home.”

Along with all these amazing things that he does he’s a fun fella to have a chat with, so we catch up whenever I’m in Washington or when he is back in Australia. Last time I was over there I presented at KM World, and had some books leftover from the conference. I asked if he had a good home for them, to which he replied “I absolutely do!”. He has now given the books to his students at AmeriCorps.

To be an effective business storyteller requires practice.  Anecdote’s programs are designed to work in a no-nonsense way in a business setting, you can learn more about them here

About  Shawn Callahan

Shawn, author of Putting Stories to Work, is one 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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