Double Presence

While you are telling your story, you must be aware of the reactions from your listeners. 

Historier under Bøgen, storytelling in Kings Garden, Copenhagen, 2009.

I am at the 2002 Lejre Storytelling Festival. I am telling stories outside a farm cottage area. There are about eighty people sitting in the sun listening to my stories. Steve Denning, former Director of the Knowledge Management at the World Bank and at that time a world wide renowned expert in Business Narrative, stands at a bit of distance. I can feel that there is a good flow in my stories and I start my storytelling interaction dance with the audience.

When I am done, Steve comes over to me. He tells me I am a completely different person when I am telling stories. I protest, I am not playing any characters. Then he laughs and says that I am being touchy.

He says that my presence transforms into a double presence. On the one hand I was very much aware of every single member of the audience, how their breath changed, how their eyes changed into a concentrated listening mode. On the other hand I was also present in the story, how every single character in the story was clear for me, how landscapes were shaped in seconds.

This interaction between the presence of the audience and the present of every single aspect of the story, is what we call “The Double Presence”.

Storytelling, a one day workshop for leaders in Copenhagen, Denmark

In this highly interactive workshop you will learn how to

– craft a story that serve your purpose

– tell the story to an audience

-get feedback to the story content, the way it was told and clear advices to improve your telling

One week before the workshop: 1/2 hour interview prior to the workshop exploring the needs of the participants

4 hour workshop

1 week after the workshop: One to one coaching on Skype or Zoom

Svend-Erik creates a uniquely inspiring and creative learning environment based on trust and expert narrator skills. Svend-Erik har a broad experience based from culture as well as organizational contexts, and brings his great personality to his coaching practice, too.

Søren Buhl Hornskov, Docent at Københavns Professionshøjskole

 

 

Stories

When you listen to a story, you know that you´re having a constant influence on it. It may not be something you notice consciously, but just the feeling of eye contact, the direct and clear communication between two people is enough for you as listener to feel that you are important in determining the direction the story will take.

Each of the people listening to a story affects how the story develops. It is a strong feeling to transform into the real world: You helped shape the story – now go out and shape reality. You have to experience it to understand it completely, how the almost hypnotic state a story can put a person in can stimulate action.

Dario Fo, from Italy, the winner of the 1997 Nobel Prize for Literature and a wonderful storyteller: “The audience has always been my litmus paper, every second. Are you able to listen to them, does the audience conduct you like a conductor of a major orchestra?”

The organizational tree

There are basically three kinds of stories you tell in your organization

• Future stories – the canopy and the fruits on the tree: Visions of what the immediate and long-term future will bring to the organization. The Springboard Stories are told in a minimalistic way.

• We stories – the trunk of the tree: Stories that create identity. Values become alive in these stories. Pattern of these stories: Home – challenge – new home

• Personal – stories – the roots of the tree: Every person in the organization is important and every voice should be heard. Some of these stories should stay hidden under the surface. Often with details and some senses activated.

When you as a manager prepare a presentation for a group of employees, think of these three elements, connected to the I -, We – and Future – stories:

• Have you created trust by telling a personal story? Nobody wants to be lead by ‘another suit’.

• Is there a element in your talk that involves a ‘We’? Can you tell what the group have done in a positive way? If not, can you use a negative story to establish a desire for change?

• The last part of your presentation is crucial to the outcome of your encounter with your audience – do you leave them with hope? Is the vision understandable for the group? Is it desirable?

Tuesday 6th November from 9am to 1pm, somewhere in Copenhagen, Denmark

Max. 6 participants

Price: 1500,- kr. + moms including lunch, coffee and a book on storytelling.