communication Presentation public speaking

Being quiet can be a storytelling power move

The power of shhhhhhhh

Perhaps the hardest part of telling a business story is resisting the temptation to finish your story yourself. I call this “The Power of Shhhhh.”

It’s where you stop talking. Be quiet. Let your story and its lessons sink in.

People hate a vacuum, and will often rush to fill it with their own conclusions. When people jump in at the end to tell you what they’ve learned from your story…and then recommend the next steps to take — you’ve told the right story to the right audience, at the right time.

The next time you tell a story, take your moment of silence. Try using the Power of Shhhhh to let your audience finish your story for you.

Being quiet can be a storytelling power move.

Laura Bergells is a professional story finder. She writes, coaches, teaches, and speaks. Check out her online courses at LinkedIn Learning.

If you’re a LinkedIn Premium or member, these courses are free! If you’re not a member, you can either become a member or buy each of these classes à la carte.

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