Boring Stories Stink: You can do Better!

We all fear telling stories that seem to go on and on with no point. The stories that jump back and forth in time, the ones that go back to the beginning when you think you’ve reached the middle because you missed an important detail. The ones where you introduce people and situations that seem […]

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How Story Structure Helps You Stay on Topic

We all know that one person who seems to go on for ages when they start a story. They jump back and forth in time. When you think they’re in the middle of the story they jump back to the beginning. They introduce people and situations that seem to have no bearing on the story. […]

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Women Need Big, Audacious Goals

Here’s the situation this week. Really, it could be any week, but this happened this week. I’m giving a workshop on creating your personal professional story. Everyone has done their homework and brought their audacious goals. When it’s time to share goals, some people want to cure cancer or eradicate a disease. Others want to […]

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Learn Malcom Gladwell’s Most Valuable Storytelling Tool

Malcolm Gladwell is a 56-year-old Canadian living in New York City, a runner who loves cars, and probably our most popular public intellectual. Except that he isn’t really a public intellectual, he’s a storyteller. That’s how he describes himself, a storyteller. I’ve been a Gladwell fan for a long time. According to my reading journal, […]

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How to craft a personal statement that’s actually about you

About three years ago, I was on vacation with my family staying on the German-Austrian border. We were visiting Neuschwanstein, the castle that inspired the Disney castle at the tail end of a family road trip from the Netherlands to Croatia and back home. My husband was working on a grant application at the time […]

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Use your story to stand out, not your CV

Every fall, I need a new babysitter. Since my babysitters tend to be busy and hard-working, I usually need a couple. I find them by posting a request on my expat Facebook group. My post gets anywhere from half a dozen two dozen responses every time. After I’ve eliminated anyone who doesn’t meet my basic […]

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diagram showing a structure for personal-professional story

A Story Structure for Your Personal-Professional Story

Every workshop I give starts with a story. You’d expect as much. But every workshop I give starts with a personal story, one that often includes my family members and that tells people both who I am and what story can do. For me, there’s no other way to go. When I give a workshop […]

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The Learner’s Journey

This spring at the SIETAR Europa Congress in Leuven, I met Bastian Küntzel. We got to chatting about “what do you do” and “what do I do” and when I told him about my cool new idea to develop a method for using story structure to teach, he said, “I just wrote a book about that.” […]

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