Category Story

What Makes A Great TED Talk

Here’s June Cohen, Executive Producer at TED Media, sharing her answers to What makes a great TED Talk? What are the elements of a great TED Talk? and What makes a talk? She passionately outlines her experience of what types of talks will “go viral”. The Ingredients of a Great TED talk In this […]

A team can be heaven or hell: what makes the difference?

A team can be heaven, a team can be hell: what makes the difference? This is a story I shared a few months ago during the ACE16 conference at Harvard. The story of Heaven and Hell There’s a man that all his life he’s had one singular worry. He wakes up every morning with this […]

There are no Answers, Just Stories

On success, there is no one right answer: You cannot learn absolute rules from another person. You cannot take the life recipe of another person. You can learn from their stories, but only you will take what you take from a story. Seek out Stories Tribes, civilisations and families have found that life lessons are […]

Improve your Stories: use more “therefore”s and “but”s

“What if a writer is trying to tell a story and nothing much happens, nothing is resolved…” How to Tell A Boring Story Use: “and then this happened”. The essential ingredient of a boring (it is going nowhere) story is the “and then this happened”…  “and then this happened”…  “and then this happened” structure. There […]

Kevin Spacey’s Three Key Elements to a Compelling Story

Today I am sharing a post from John Zimmer… There is a small group of blogs that I always read.  One is John Zimmer’s Manner of Speaking.  This week he shared a video he found of Kevin Spacey (the actor) talking to an audience of online marketers. Kevin Spacey talks about 3 ingredients of compelling […]

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Video Lesson: What is a Story?

The 7 Ingredients of Meaningful Story How do you use these ingredients to find meaning in your life and business?


I am currently reading “The Power of Story” by Jim Loehr. In the introduction he puts a name on the widespread condition of “presenteeism“: “Without investing high-quality, focussed energy in the activity before you, whatever it may be, setting time aside simply takes us from absenteeism to presenteeism – a condition increasingly plaguing American business, a […]

7 Steps to the Perfect Story

Stories are Predictable “We think of stories as a wildly creative art form but within that creativity and that diversity there is a lot of conformity. Stories are very predictable. No matter where you go in the world, no matter how different people seem, no matter how hard their lives are, people tell stories, universally, […]

What is a story?

At the very simplest, a story is: A character Who wants something Overcomes obstacles to get it An epic story is A character Who wants something massive And is willing to risk everything to get it The real depth of any story is not whether the character achieves the goal but who they become as […]

Kurt Vonnegut

Kurt Vonnegut on The Shapes of Stories

Kurt Vonnegut is an American writer (1922-2007) famous for his satire and humour in the face of desperate circumstances.  He has a wonderful theory on “the shapes of stories” – which he presents in the 4 minute video available below. Vonnegut’s 8 Rules for Telling a Story In his book Bagombo Snuff Box: Uncollected Short Fiction, […]

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