Every story of substance is comprised of smaller stories. Think chapters in a book or scenes in a movie. An impactful story told from the stage is no different, and one of the key steps in the coaching process is working with a speaker to identify a series of these mini-stories that can be stitched together, thus forming an engaging narrative that takes the listener on a journey, step by step.
I call them story blocks, as in most cases they are self-contained and can be put together in a variety of ways to tell an interesting story. Having watched thousands of talks, both live and recorded, I’ve identified eight types of story blocks which are fundamental to crafting compelling talks that support your message from different angles, on multiple levels.
A noteworthy talk will often feature more than one type of story block, though it’s rare for a story to have them all. Use this approach to uncover a variety of story elements which will ultimately comprise your full story.