Storytelling for Change
Storytelling for Change is a 4-week course that will help you better connect with your audience, whether in a meeting with one person or in a presentation to hundreds of people. To make this course widely accessible, it is free.
Acumen and The Ariel Group have created a hands-on course to help you develop your practical skills as a storyteller. Whether you work in an office making presentations in the boardroom, as a teacher with 30 to 300 students, interacting with customers, or one-on-one with individuals, using the elements of story bring you closer to your audience.
Acumen believes that storytelling is an essential tool for changing the way the world tackles poverty because it starts with changing conversations around what we see, hear, feel and know to be true. Change leaders see the world’s potential, and tell powerful stories that inspire action.
You'll Love This Course If:
- You make lots of presentations, or you want to get better at them.
- You are a teacher, facilitator or instructor.
- You think you don’t have any stories (we’ll bring them out of you!).
- You want a new way of connecting with people (great for networking!).
- You’re interviewing for jobs and want a strong way of presenting yourself.
- You want to change your communication style.
- You just want to have fun!
Our Learning Partner
In developing this course, Acumen is excited to partner with The Ariel Group. The Ariel Group has trained Acumen’s Global Fellows in storytelling for the past five years. Drawing on the same exercises performers use, the Ariel Group training builds critical skills in the areas of leadership development, communication skills, team building, change management, and coaching and development. More information can be found at http://www.arielgroup.com.
What You'll Learn
By the end of this 4-module course, you will:
- Be confident in using stories, especially personal stories, as a part of your communication toolkit.
- Know how to tell stories and use a specific set of storytelling skills so that you connect with the hearts and minds of your audience.
- Have developed, rehearsed, and received feedback on one personal story as a replicable model so that you can build a personal ‘library’ or ‘back pocket’ of stories that can be used in different situations.
- Be able to use a 5-step process to integrate story into presentations for change, work or many other situations.
How The Course Works
There are no in-person teachers or facilitators for this course. You will work through the course with a group of classmates we call your “lab group”. You must find your lab group before you sign up for the course.
Course content will consist of readings, online videos and discussions/activities. Each week, you will receive an email with the materials for the upcoming lab. The materials will consist of two things:
- Lab prep (1-2 hours): To be completed before your lab group meets
- Lab guide (typically 2 hours): To be completed together with the rest of your lab group when you meet. Upon completing each lab, the lab group leader for the week will be asked to fill out a simple feedback form to share the group’s progress.
Each week you will also be encouraged to practice your new storytelling skills and make sure you are able to transfer your knowledge into action. Remember the age-old saying:
“Words are mere bubbles of water, deeds are drops of gold.”
Frequently Asked Questions
Do my group members need to be in the same location?
We recommend signing up with a group that is all physically located in the same place. Much of the value of this course derives from the in-person, peer-to-peer learning that happens between group members. With that said, we have had groups cover many of the labs over Skype or Google+ hangouts so it is possible to have a remote group.
Is this course just for chapter members?
No, this course is open to both chapter and non-chapter members interested in the course and prepared to commit 4-5 hours per week to it.
Is there a set class schedule every week?
No, the time in which you review the prep material each week is up to you. Similarly, the time you choose to meet with your lab group each week is a decision between you and your group. So it’s a good idea to consider all your availability when forming a group.
We set the schedule regarding what topic to cover each week but you are free to meet with your group within each week whenever it is convenient for the group. Since we are offering this course globally, across different time zones, it isn’t realistic to deliver the content at a specific time; therefore, we will e-mail each week’s material out on the Thursday of each week and within that week you are expected to review the prep material and meet your group to complete that week’s lab (For example, Week 1 material will be sent to you on May 9th and we recommend that your group meets between May 11-17).
Will a certificate be awarded upon completion of the course?
The course is really for you and your own personal development; therefore, you will get as much out of this course as you put in. We will provide an acknowledgement of participation for individuals that complete all 4 weeks of the course and complete all the course surveys and reports.
Please contact Jo-Ann Tan at firstname.lastname@example.org.