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041 – Icing breakers and presentation matters

Posted by  Shawn Callahan —May 13, 2019
Filed in Business storytelling, Podcast

Does presentation matter? Here’s a story you can tell or trigger to convince your colleagues that it does.

storytelling chocolate cake

If you regularly read our blog, you will be familiar with story-triggering. Story-triggering is what occurs when someone does something so remarkable that the people who see, or experience it, tell stories about it.

In our last episode, we shared a story which you can tell or trigger to make a business point. In this episode, Shawn shares a similar story. There’s no backwards brain bike in this story, but there is cake. 

The book Shawn mentions at the beginning of this episode is Chip and Dan Heath’s Made to Stick. 

For more information about the events Shawn and Mark mention in this episode, visit our events page. 

For your storybank

Tags: changing minds, connection story, first impressions, presentation, story-triggering

A young man walked into the first tutorial of his first graphic design course at university. He chose a seat at a desk and sat down, waiting for the class to begin. 

Suddenly, a man burst in from the back of the room, carrying a large, messy chocolate cake in one hand and a pile of serviettes in the other. 

He asked each student, “Would you like a piece of cake?” 

They all declined. 

The man disappeared out the back again, before returning.

This time, he was pushing a silver service trolley with a cake knife, ceramic plates, fabric serviettes, and a pristine chocolate cake. 

He again asked each student, “Would you like a piece of cake?” 

“Oh yes, please,” they all responded. 

Each student took a slice and soon there was no cake left. 

The man pushed the trolley to the side, walked to the front of the room, and said, “See, presentation matters,” before introducing himself as the class’ tutor.  

Podcast transcript coming soon!

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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