Storytelling: an Ancient Strategy for a New World


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  • Group introductions: Six word stories ala HemingwaySix words on why you do what you do
  • These 4 currents from a prism that help people see our or in new light, help us see work in new lightImpact = (Intention + Illumination + Inspiration) x Insightin other words...  your organization’s impact is the sum of shared goals, knowledge and passion, multiplied by fresh insights that lead to effective approaches. The most compelling organizations crackle with electricity, as if a current was coursing through them. At the LightBox Collaborative, we believe there are four currents that flow through compelling causes…Working together, these four currents can supercharge your impact. The most effective organizations are hard-wired for success as these currents course through programs and operations alike.
  • Stories are a fundamental building block of our society.They are a key way that we convey and remember information and may even be hard wired in us.
  • In fact, stories do more than stick with us. Stories TRUMP facts . Studies show it, but so do your own experience[slide: santa, tooth fairy, urban myths? how long did you believe in Santa even after you knew no one can fit down a chimney? Other examples…]
  • But stories aren’t just for kids. Check out this examples of nonprofits using powerful stories to advance their strategies – can use green slate - Smart professionals tell stories, too.Storytelling a framework that applies across media and across org type. But is particularly well-suited to community building work that you do
  • HOLLY: THIS VIDEO IS NOW EMBEDDED ON NEXT SLIDE. want to show you a story about the power of stories. It’s a story about what happens when you tell stories. Through the power of sharing stories, $93 bucks has been multiplied in 200,000 meals for needy families. And that ain’t child’s play!Need one wow factor example: 93 Dollar club video need to be embeded:
  • Kivi Leroux Miller questions nonprofits should answer with storiesThese 5 common questions cry for stories!
  • Answer with Testimonials. When someone is learning about you for the first time, they’ll be curious what other people think about your organization, your staff and your effectiveness. You can talk about how great you are, but that’s not nearly as convincing as testimonials from other people who aren’t on your payroll (or even on your board). Testimonials are short quotes — little mini-stories — that offer insight into why someone is happy to be associated with your organization in one or two sentences.
  • Gilda’s Club Seattle includes testimonials and photos at the top of nearly every page on its site that instantly convey how important the group is to its supporters.
  • Answer with Profiles. When someone donates time or money to your organization, they are joining a virtual community of people who believe in the same cause. If someone is not quite sure if your nonprofit is a good fit for them, showing them that they fit in with other supporters can help overcome that barrier. Profiles of clients, donors, volunteers, members, and other supporters are a good way to show the different kinds of people who are involved with your group, making a newcomer feel more comfortable that they are in the right place.
  • Fathers Network mission is to celebrate and support fathers and families raising children with special health care needs and developmental disabilities. They have a storybank on their web page so fathers interested in their services can see firsthand the challenges that other fathers are struggling with – there is no better signal that people in this organization can relate.
  • Answer with Success Stories. Do you get the job done? Are you going to make a difference with the money I give you? Success stories show donors (and potential new donors) exactly what it is you do and how you do it. They can be full-length articles or shorter vignettes like those on the
  • National CASA website. CASA = Court Appointed Special Advocates The multimedia stories on the home page show the children they serve and their adult court-appointed advocates speaking about the benefits of the CASA program. These stories end with this simple statement: “Children with a CASA volunteer are less likely to reenter Child Protective Services.” Does it work? Yes, it does.REPLACE WITH HEALTH EXAMPLE?
  • 4) What Difference Can a Single Person Make?Answer with Personalized Giving Options. Big problems are overwhelming. If you swamp people with the enormity of the need, they are likely to tune you out and move on to something that feels more manageable. One way to overcome this problem is to focus on the difference that a single person can make and clearly demonstrate through storytelling that a new donor, as a single individual, can bring about change by supporting your organization. Tying donor actions or gift levels to specific results is a great way to do that.
  • Kiva and Donors Choose are the shining stars in this category. This approach makes the donor the protagonist of their own storyREPLACE WITH HEALTH EXAMPLE?
  • Holly, I like this Doctors without Borders video as an example of the kind of story you can tell with video– powerful, connection to the donor, makes the point.
  • 5) Can I Come Along?Answer with Personal Chronicles. For your supporters to fully engage with your nonprofit, you have to be willing to share what’s really going on. A small but important segment of your donor base won’t be happy with the level of detail they get in your newsletters. They’ll want more and you should give it to them. Blogs are a natural way to provide this kind of ongoing, detailed, behind-the-scenes narrative about your work.
  • WARNING: This is 3 minutes long, but it’s good. (Heath wrote and produced)Laguna Honda Hospital– big bond funded a new building for the hospital to replace seriously antiquated facilities for SF’s safety net hospital. Opened in 2010. This video was made just before the big move to the new hospital.This video has two audiences: 1. the people of San Francisco, who funded the new hospital, and have heard nothing but bad news about the facility for decades. The video is to invite them to see the new Laguna Honda.2. The residents of Laguna Honda, many of whom have lived there for decades, were SCARED about moving. This video was to reassure them about their new home.Points to make;Big story (historical context, story of the bond)Group storytelling (together these voices describe the New Laguna Honda)Pictures worth a thousand words (particularly for those familiar with the “Florence Nightengale Wards” of the old hospital)
  • Communications is the strategic through line, it binds together all aspects of the orgs work into a cohesive whole. Coms plan is a place where you can pull all these elements of work together. And Clarity on these points can help you sell your strategy to key stakeholders
  • [slide is blank to help with the next slide’s transition]
  • These stories are about the people your org serves, the people who do the work inside your org and the people who benefit.
  • If you weave these stories into your work, into your org culture
  • it becomes the DNA of your org When your stories are in your org dna, as the guiding principles, the things that create you, you will be gathering and telling them in a way that helps you connect with donors, constituents, policy makers and more.
  • Share a few from the group. Who filled them all in? Anyone have an aha moment in this exercise? Anyone have a story they thought of a new way?
  • Colorado Health Story is the collective effort of several foundations and nonprofits across the state to collect 250 digital stories over the next 3 years. The organizations that have united behind this effort are all intent on helping Coloradans get the health care they need when they need it. This project brings that lofty goal down to ground level where real people can talk about actual experiences seeking help – sometimes finding it, and sometimes not.
  • This is an example of the stories shared on Colorado Health Story. NOTE the use of Prezi and audio as a low-cost alternative to video.
  • Lunch Break
  • Now go write your own 25 minutesThen share stories in pairs to share feedback 15 minutes Is there anyone who wants to share with the entire group for feedback from this august group of story expert?
  • Nurse-Family Partnership. NFP is an evidence-based program that helps first-time mothers have healthier babies and stronger families. For more than 30 years, the organization painstakingly collected data to confirm its effectiveness and hone its model, but only in the last few years has it turned equal attention to collecting stories. Thanks to a mandate from the very top, a storytelling culture has taken hold within NFP, and you can see that very clearly on its site. Stories are featured on the home page, and if you click on any of the links there, you’ll arrive at compelling narratives taking you deep into the relationships between NFP’s dedicated nurses and the young mothers they serve. Now NFP has both the stories and the evidence to make the most powerful case possible for their work. (From Andy Goodman’s Storytelling Web PDF)
  • Storytelling on your web site This whole org revolves around the story of their founder Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation (ALSF) shares the vision of our founder and creator, Alexandra “Alex” Scott—a cure for all children with cancer.When Alex, who was diagnosed with childhood cancer just before her first birthday, was four, she told her parents she wanted to set up a front-yard lemonade stand. Her plan: to give the money to doctors to help them find a cure. Her first “Alex’s Lemonade Stand” raised an astonishing $2,000 in one day. While bravely fighting her own cancer, Alex continued to set up lemonade stands every year. As news spread of the remarkable girl so dedicated to helping other sick children, people everywhere were inspired to start their own lemonade stands—donating the proceeds to her cause.In 2004 when Alex passed away at the age of eight—her stand and inspiration had raised over $1 million towards finding a cure for the disease that took her life. Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation was started by her parents in 2005 to continue the work that Alex began. Our mission is simple: to raise money for and awareness of childhood cancer causes—especially research into new treatments and cures—and to encourage and empower others, especially children, to get involved and make a difference for children with cancer.Since Alex set up her first lemonade stand in 2000—truly exemplifying the saying “When life hands you lemons, make lemonade”—we have raised more than $35 million, with more than $12 million of those dollars coming from lemonade stands. Note that the whole web site design incorporates the story – the lemon yellow the tag line, etc
  • BarnesJewishHospital213 videos62,342 video views92 subscribersJoined March 28, 2008Barnes-Jewish Hospital is the largest hospital in Missouri and an affiliated teaching hospital of Washington University School of Medicine. Barnes-Jewish has a 1,700 member medical staff with many who are recognized in the "Best Doctors in America."Description: Barnes-Jewish Hospital nurses share their stories of joy and heartache as they care for their patients. also
  • Example from Barnes Jewish Hospital’s “Day in the Life of a Nurse” series
  • Listen to “feed the car” TRT 1:30HOLLY need to download the file & Embedd for Rebecca is a one-family org that build awareness of autism and raises $ for Reed Academy, a NJ school for autistic children Rebecca is smiling because she and her familyThey use the itunes store to share podcasts of stories from other families with autistic kids Host of this podcast is the father-founder of this org and has written “the special needs parent Handbook” drove cross-country in 2002 kicking off an ongoing effort to help parents become stronger advocates,    to support education and help open REED Academy, and to advance groundbreaking research including studies underway at Seaver Autism Center.
  •  Though not a list of all the solutions available to you, here are a handful of good ones. When it comes podcasting, most people want to concentrate on their content and worry less about the technical aspects. And honestly: you have more to gain with better content than by understanding what an RSS file is. So, why bother? Have a look at these services:Blogtalkradioblogtalkradio is a Podcast and social networking site that offers a very easy way to create on-demand offers an easy way to publish your own audio and video podcast in 3 steps. There is not technology curve. You can share your podcast in Facebook, Myspace, Blogger, and other online destinations.GarageBandPodOmaticPodOmatic offers a basic and pro option. Basic provides easy tools, 500MB of storage and 15GB of bandwidth per month. Pro has more features for about $10/month. Find out more at the PodOmatic website.
  • Mayo clinic center for social media Mayo Clinic Center for Social Media exists to improve health globally by accelerating effective application of social media tools throughout Mayo Clinic and spurring broader and deeper engagement in social media by hospitals, medical professionals and patients.Mayo Clinic’s Social Media Philosophy:Mayo Clinic believes individuals have the right and responsibility to advocate for their own health, and that it is our responsibility to help them use social media tools to get the best information, connect with providers and with each other, and inspire healthy choices. We intend to lead the health care community in applying these revolutionary tools to spread knowledge and encourage collaboration among providers, improving health care quality everywhere.Mission of the Center:Lead the social media revolution in health care, contributing to health and well being for people everywhere.Vision for the Center:Mayo Clinic will be the authentic voice for patients and health care professionals, building relationships through the revolutionary power of social media.
  • As communicators, it’s our jobs to hold our organizations and our causes up to the light. Shed new light… How will you do that with what you’ve learned today?
  • Campfires- Start using the stories everywhere you can. Turn every communication into a campfire.By telling stories is how you really weave them into your work.
  • These 4 currents from a prism that help people see our or in new light, help us see work in new lightImpact = (Intention + Illumination + Inspiration) x Insightin other words...  your organization’s impact is the sum of shared goals, knowledge and passion, multiplied by fresh insights that lead to effective approaches. The most compelling organizations crackle with electricity, as if a current was coursing through them. At the LightBox Collaborative, we believe there are four currents that flow through compelling causes…Working together, these four currents can supercharge your impact. The most effective organizations are hard-wired for success as these currents course through programs and operations alike.
  • HM give credentials
  • Storytelling: an Ancient Strategy for a New World

    1. 1. StorytellingAn ancient strategy for a new world Holly Minch UC Berkeley Center for Health Leadership January 30, 2012
    2. 2. Holding good ideas up to the light
    3. 3. INTENTIONClarity of goals and themeans to track progresstowards them
    4. 4. ILLUMINATIONInformation andperspective toinform action
    5. 5. INSPIRATIONPassion and purpose workingtogether to create momentum
    6. 6. INSIGHTAlignment ofpeople, purpose, andresources preparing youto meet challenges in anew way
    8. 8. Power of Stories
    9. 9. Smart Professionals Tell Stories, Too
    10. 10. StrategicStorytelling
    11. 11. Strategic Storytelling Five questions you should answer with stories… Kivi Leroux Miller
    12. 12. What Do OtherPeople Think About This?
    13. 13. Are PeopleHere Like Me?
    14. 14. Does ThisWork?
    15. 15. What DifferenceCan a Single Person Make?
    16. 16. Can ICome Along?
    17. 17. Public Education Fundraisin Policy g Story-based DirectPolitics Strategies Service Litigation Organizing Advocacy
    18. 18. Storytelling asBest Practiceby Andy Goodman How stories strengthen your organization,engage your audience, and advance your mission.
    19. 19. “I became a l do-gooder because...” “On the “I got this morning of tattoo when...” 9/11...” “At my first job, I...” “Today onFacebook...” IDENTITY
    20. 20. The The Mob atBenevolent the GatesCommunity Story Story The Rot at The the TopTriumphant Story Individual Story CULTURE
    21. 21. “Emblematic Success”“The Nature of Our “Performance” Challenge”“How We Started” “Where We Are Going” “How We’re Striving to Improve” TRIBAL IDENTITY & CULTURE
    22. 22. ICUC saves “Emblematic $2.1M for Success” families Moratorium “The Nature on butt- The parable of of Our “Performance” backwards the plumber Challenge” strategy“How We The dayCrisitunity Started” “Where We we retire Are Going” early “How We’re John Edwards,to Striving lo Improve” cal realtor LIGHTBOX IDENTITY & CULTURE
    23. 23. “Emblematic Success”“The Nature of Our “Performance” Challenge”“How We Started” “Where We Are Going” “How We’re Striving to Improve” TRIBAL IDENTITY & CULTURE
    24. 24. What are yourheadlines?
    25. 25. Building your library of stories• Concept• Capture• Collect• Commit
    26. 26. LunchBreak!
    27. 27. Elements ofSuccessful Stories
    29. 29. Storytelling Tips • Name names! • Less telling, more showing. • The right details paint the picture.
    30. 30. What’s your story?
    31. 31. Storytelling Tools
    32. 32. Storytelling Web Sites
    33. 33. Storytelling Web Sites
    34. 34. Web Site Storytelling Best Practices • Show us the characters – support the story with photos and video • Weave the elements – integrate core story throughout site • Provide opportunities for others – let people share their stories
    35. 35. Video Storytelling
    36. 36. Video Storytelling Best Practices • Keep it short – 90-120 seconds • First person – people who can tell story firsthand • Details – choose TITLE carefully – include URL in video
    37. 37. Podcast Storytelling
    38. 38. Podcast Storytelling Best Practices • Invest in a good microphone • Conversations make good listening • Edit into content chunks • Plan for mobility – use to your advantage • Use the iTunes store to push podcast content to interested audiences
    39. 39. Social Media Storytelling
    40. 40. Social Media Storytelling Best Practices • Empower and align many voices to share stories • Invite stories; ask questions • Push stories out through all social media channels
    41. 41. What are your ideas?
    43. 43. Holding good ideas up to the light 415-225-8597 @LBCollab