Use the 3 Elements of a Good Story to Lead With Power

The Power of Story

When I was growing up, I spent many weekends camping with my Boy Scout Troop in pursuit of my Eagle Scout badge. One thing I remember about those trips was the campfires and the stories we told. From the scary to the hilarious, those stories created an environment as we entertained each other. No devices, no distractions, just stories.

We may live in a different time, but the power of story remains an important part of memory, of persuasion, and of leadership.

A few months ago, we spotlighted Procter & Gamble executive Paul Smith, who is now a speaker and trainer on storytelling techniques. His latest book, Sell with a Story: How to Capture Attention, Build Trust, and Close the Sale is a powerful reminder of the power of story.

After our written interview, I met with him in person to continue our conversation.


“There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.” –Maya Angelou


We discuss the 3 elements of a great story:

  1. A hero we care about (a relatable hero).
  2. A villain we are afraid of (a relevant challenge).
  3. An epic battle (an honest struggle).

We also discuss:

  • why getting others to tell their stories is more important than our own
  • using open ended questions
  • the acid test on embellishment of stories
  • 2 key storytelling pitfalls to avoid
  • how to use the element of surprise in your presentations

Master the power of story to improve your leadership and persuasive abilities in all of your interactions and presentations.


“Everyone is necessarily the hero of his own life story.” –John Barth



Improve YOUR story this year! By signing up for FREE to Leadership Insights, you will receive timely updates to help you reach your goals.

Already on my list? Enter your email above and you'll get instructions on how to access the webinar.

Sell with a Story: How to Capture Attention, Build Trust, and Close the Sale


Lead With A Story

Have you ever worked for a great story teller or someone skilled at getting others to tell stories? How did this affect your work? You can leave a comment by clicking here.
This article is copyrighted by Skip Prichard, republishing is not permitted. Please share, but don't repost in its entirety.