Leading Change and Story Telling

Monday, April 28th, 2008

Thanks to Dr. Richard Borough’s blog for this:
Researchers have found that storytelling is far more convincing to an audience than rational arguments, statistics, or facts. In her book “Corporate Legends and Lore: The Power of Storytelling as a Management Tool”, Peg Neuhauser outlines the results of a study with MBA students that demonstrate the power of a story. MBA students are very much orientated by statistics. Neuhauser divided her statistically oriented students into three groups. The first group was given only statistics related to the potential success of a new winery. The second group was given statistics and a story. The third group received only the story. The story ended with: “And my father would be so proud to sip this wine.” A majority of students in the third group believed that the winery would be successful, while in the other two groups the skeptics predominated. The story, not the statistics, sold the winery.