This is an almost pocket-sized book, and is a quick and easy read. Bobette Buster is a renowned storytelling consultant and lecturer, and shares her personal perspectives into storytelling.
Two takeaways from reading this book:
1) Vulnerability is not a bad thing, not so much that one should sink into obscurity and play the “victim” card, but just enough so that any reader can identify with the storyteller as a real human being, and not a corporate shill that all too frequently populates the social media channels these days. How to determine what is “just enough” vulnerability is a skill to hone over decades, and not easily done by novices. So my advice? Tread carefully.
2) Don’t be boring. This sounds so cliche and yet it is refreshing in the one quote I found in the book by Yves Chouinard (see below). The whole idea of good storytelling is in its ups, downs, and hopefully ups again. Allow your readers and listeners to join you in a collective journey, where everyone gets to enjoy the adventure together, and emerge together at the destination, drenched in cold sweat and tears of exhilaration perhaps. It certainly reminds me of how I teach storytelling in sales and leadership programs, with references to the 7-point approach.
The rest of the book contains lots of stories, including some you may be familiar with. While there are some basic mechanics of storytelling, the author engages with the reader in a simple and approachable manner.
This is a book for novice and emerging storytellers, or perhaps people who have been trapped by corporate “guidelines” and limitations, and finding little traction for those stories which turned away readers. This book will inspire, and hopefully the readers will depart with new warmth and fire, enough to start new explorations into how to tell better and more engaging business (or other) stories. It is not a manual. it is more like an extended motivational speech.
Here is that quote in the book that inspired me:
“Real adventure is defined best as a journey from which you may not come back alive, and certainly not as the same person.”
– Yvon Chouinard, billionaire, environmentalist, rock climber
Title: Do Story
Author: Bobette Buster
Genre: Business & Economics
Release Date: 2013-05
Dr Seamus Phan is the Head of Content and CTO at McGallen & Bolden. He is an expert in branding, marketing, communication, leadership training, crisis management, and entrepreneurship. This article may appear concurrently on his blog. Connect on LinkedIn. ©1984-2018 Seamus Phan et al. All rights reserved.