Storytelling Workshop in NYC: My Notes

Last updated: July 28, 2020

Today I attended the 90-minute Storytelling for Business Master Class hosted by The Story Studio.

Stories are how we make sense of the world. You can use storytelling in a business setting to forge a connection with your colleagues, or to get buy-in.

I just wanted to learn how to convince people to host a 2-hour cocktail party.

Blonde man in middle of two professional women, holding a sign that says STORYTELLING WORKSHOP
The general rule of having your own blog is this: If you’re going to post a photo of yourself, you MUST choose the wackiest one possible. L to R: Cyndi Freeman, me, and Gail Thomas.

About the Storytelling Workshop

The workshop was led by instructors Cyndi Freeman and Gail Thomas.

Group of people on stage, with me (center) holding a sign that says Storytelling Workshop
Really happy with how this group pic turned out. I made this little sign on my iPad that says “STORYTELLING WORKSHOP” to get a picture with the instructors.

The cost was $15 (great deal!) and it was hosted at The Kraine Theater as part of the FRIGID Festival.

Here’s the blurb that was provided about the class:

This class covers how and why storytelling is an invaluable tool for communication in business settings. Participants will be guided in applying the principles of compelling storytelling to communicate more effectively on the job. Brief lectures and hands-on exercises will focus on bringing an emotionally resonant arc to brand biographies, personal anecdotes for professional networking, and vision-into-action stories. Whether it is used for talking about important projects, selling a product, selling oneself to a client or hiring manager, crafting stories for grant proposals, or talking to the press, storytelling is a tool that helps people deliver important messages in a way that is clear, compelling and memorable.

The Basics of Storytelling

A woman, Cyndi Freeman, on stage with a black background
Cyndi Freeman teaching during the Storytelling Workshop for Business today.

Why Use Stories:

  • Stories are part of our collective consciousness.
  • They’re how we motivate people and how movements are born.
  • Humans are see narrative. We want a beginning, middle, and end.

Storytelling for Business

  • In business, you should tell people right away: What’s the controlling idea? What’s the full message?
  • Don’t try to hide the message or let the audience guess.

I’m going to share my raw notes below – I’ve got a lot – or jump straight to The Story Studio’s handout below (or download the PDF here).

My Workshop Notes

Being a visual learner helps me to write things down! These are the notes I took during the workshop on my iPad:

Four white pages with largely black handwriting about Storytelling for Business
Download the PDF: My notes from our Storytelling for Business Workshop

See my eight pages of notes from the workshop when you download my notes PDF here: Notes-StorytellingWorkshop.pdf.

Storytelling Workshop Handouts

These handouts were provided by the instructors from The Story Studio:

  1. Story Map Worksheet Business: 5 Point Story Structure
  2. Basics of Storytelling for Business: Tons of information on two pages


More Photos

Woman on stage
One of the workshop participants is practicing her story on stage. She’s from Colombia.
Woman on stage
Gail Thomas giving a storytelling example during the workshop. She’s talking about her former life as a lawyer! No big deal but I made the trash can in the background disappear from this photo so it would look nicer for you, dear blog reader.
This is the absolutely incredible thumbnail / preview graphic I made for this post. Haters will say I have too much time on my hands.

Other Storytelling Workshops in New York City


I’m glad that I went! My buddy Nicolas Marsiglia also joined, along with his cousin and one of his employees.

It was a small, intimate class. I also received excellent feedback on my story from Wendy Mages. My story was about “Benefits You Get When You’re the Host,” part of Chapter 1 for my party hosting handbook (I’m still working it out!).

More Information

Original post: February 23, 2020 -- Last updated: July 28, 2020

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