3 Lessons Steven Spielberg Can Teach You About Better Storytelling

Uncover storytelling secrets for speakers from Stephen SpielbergAre there secrets to better storytelling?

You bet. In the hands of a master, like filmmaker extraordinaire Steven Spielberg, ordinary or even ‘meh’ stories can be transformed into riveting fare.

And much of what sets Steven apart as a teller of tales comes from his ability to find and use ‘outside of the box’ nuances to heighten viewer experiences.

Here’s a for instance quote that illustrates how he thinks:

“Why pay a dollar for a bookmark? Why not use your dollar as a bookmark?”

Don’t you love it?

By looking beyond the obvious, he finds myriad ways to add new angles, flavours and/or perspectives to most any story.

And in today’s video I dig into 3 specific things Spielberg does when telling stories that can instantly help you to boost your storytelling impact.


Why Highly ‘Visual Stories’ Add Serious Sparkle to Your Presentations

Tell visual storiesDon’t you just love listening to an exceptional storyteller in action – where you find yourself ‘visually’ engrossed in an unfolding story, dying to know what’s going to happen next, and mentally transported to new worlds?

In today’s post, I’m going to share a single, simple tip you can use to bring your storytelling to a new level when giving presentations – where you don’t merely chronicle events in a purely narrative fashion, but add spice, sparkle, and scintillation to stories via the ancient art of showing ahead of telling.

But, rather than tell you about this tip, I’m going to show you – courtesy of a recent interview given by the always entertaining Tom Hanks on Stephen Colbert’s Late Show.


Open Your Ears to Find Funny Material For Your Speeches

Ask any successful comedian; being funny takes a lot of work and is actually quite a serious business.

Typically, there are many rounds of writing, re-writing and testing required to create an awesome stand-up set. And it can take time.

But, here’s a truism. Things can go a deal faster if you start with good material.


Why Stories Rule and Facts Drool When You Give Talks

Tell stories to win audience attentionHere’s a case in point about why stories trounce details when you give talks – paving your way to being a smile-inducing, crowd-pleasing speaker:

While I’m fascinated by history, my teenage daughter (like many of her age) rolls her eyes and mutters stuff like ‘Oh no, nuh-huh’ if I’m foolish enough to suggest museum visits when traveling overseas.

I don’t blame her. I was the same at that age.

So, when visiting New York recently with my family, I found a perfect antidote to the litany of boring written chronologies you’ll see time and again at historical sites – a Gangs of New York walking tour.

Result. It was a massive hit.

Why it Pays to Embrace The Power of Showing Ahead of Telling