9to5 MisFits: How to Become a Master Storyteller

You’re telling stories every day, whether you realize it or not. Every time you pitch a product or service to a prospective client, make a Powerpoint presentation to get your manager’s buy-in, or post about your breakfast on social media, you’re telling a story.
But how well are people listening? And more importantly, are they convinced?

Sure, content matters. But there’s one thing that can make or break a story — the structure!

Here are three ways to make your story stick in the minds of your audience.

1. Compelling Opening Statement: 

You want to grab the listener’s attention right away. It can be something as simple as “true story” or “let me tell you a story.” Or you could set the scene with descriptive language to take the listener on a journey.

2. The Winning Formula:

Stories should always have a clear beginning, middle, and end. One approach is “The Hero’s Journey,” by Joseph Campbell. It’s the basis of pretty much every epic saga – Star Wars, Harry Potter, Lion King, etc.

Think of the beginning as the past situation or status quo. The middle as some sort of action or event that brings about a change and reaches a climax. The end is the final resolution and the new status quo.

[Read More: The 9to5 Misfits Teach Us the Basics of Budgeting with Some Great Tips]

3. Have a Point:

We all know that one person who tells rambling stories that seem to go nowhere. Don’t be that person! Treat your story as if you’re telling a joke, where it’s building towards a punchline. Your story should drop clues along the way that ultimately build up to that punchline or central message. In fact, think of the point of the story first. Then work backwards to build up to it.

Storytelling is a powerful skill to have in your arsenal. Master it and you will actually see tangible results. It may be new clients, acing that job interview, or simply unseating that uncle as the epic storyteller in the family. Whatever your flavor, start practicing today!

The 9to5 MisFits are a YouTube duo made up of 2 best friends, Pavi Dinamani and Namrata “Nammy” Sirur, who happened to be unemployed at the same time for different reasons. Realizing that there was so much comfort in having a “buddy” to navigate this uncertain phase with, they decided to give others a virtual buddy in the form of their YouTube channel and create a support system and encourage an open and honest dialogue about unemployment.