Storytelling in Management
The best way to engage with your team is to encourage stories. Storytelling is the oldest art form, everyone likes a good one. Why is this useful?
- Lessons learned via storytelling are remembered more easily, reducing the need to repeat information.
- Engagement during a story releases dopamine in both the listener and storyteller, making the relationship between them better rooted in positivity.
- Telling a story increases brain activation. The storyteller this leads to an increased likelihood of remember useful details. The listener will make more connections with prior experiences and knowledge, further cementing their understanding.
With storytelling you will create more of a rapport with your team, one that encourages everyone to be themselves (professionally) and leaves room for mistakes and learning.
Examples of some stories to tell:
- You ease back into the work week with a story about something you did over the weekend.
- You tell a story about when you used a particular code pattern to fix a similar problem in a prior job.
- You coach an upcoming lead with a hilarious story of the time you did it wrong.
You should encourage story telling from the other team members. Put them on the spot with leading questions. This will help build a sense of team cohesion and make everyone more comfortable with each other.
This comfort is key in the development world where imposter syndrome is ubiquitous. A team that is comfortable with each other can ask questions, get answers from other members and yourself, and grow more quickly together.
All you have to do is tell a story.