Give e-learning and your employees a boost with storytelling

HR/learning in organisations
4/7/2024

Storytelling is hip. Courses are popping up everywhere to help you learn it. But you can also think again: using storytelling to learn! We'll give you tips!

We've blogged it before: good, authentic storytelling can do wonders for your organisation. Not only because it can convince customers of the quality of your products or services. Storytelling also connects employees. In particular, recognisable situations or stories with a high entertainment value score high.

But storytelling is also a great way to convey knowledge. Psychologist Jerome Bruner has already said that information is remembered twenty times faster when it is packaged in a story. An interesting, funny or remarkable story just lingers much longer than dry lists or boring treatises. A story provides an “elephant path” that leads complex information into your long-term memory almost unnoticed. That works for the classroom, but also in e-learning.

We'd like to give you a few tips on how to make maximum use of storytelling on your knowledge platform.

1. Short and to the point

A good story lets people think for themselves. So give a lot of space to your own imagination and don't chew everything out from A to Z. Do you have a topic you want to explore and want to trigger your viewer, listener or reader to think?

That doesn't always have to be with long stories with complicated plots. Just come up with a very short story related to the theme, with an open ending. Think of a meme, a TikTok video, or just a few written, catchy words.

Whichever shape you choose: put a lot of emotion into it, it has to touch something. End with an invitation for students to respond. What does this remind them of? Do they have a similar experience? How would they solve the problem described?

2. Interactive game

The strength of storytelling lies mainly in a lot of interaction with the target group. And let's face it: is there anything as motivating and addictive as playing a game?! Then not only the child in us wakes up, but also the hunter. We want more points, we want to win.

Take advantage of that science and package your teaching materials into an interactive game. In a playful way, the student gains new knowledge, which, while continuing to play, can also be tested. Because the power of repetition is also indispensable when it comes to learning things.

3. Total experience

In order for the story to evoke emotions and really settle in your head, it must be a total experience. Therefore, think beyond the content of the story itself. Pay conscious attention to:

  • visually: ensure pleasant design and attractive, authentic illustrations
  • audio: choose music that surprises, sounds that evoke memories
  • tempo: play at the speed of image, sound, adapt it to the level of the subject matter

4. Personal technology

Not everyone learns in the same way. Nevertheless, it is important that every employee has the opportunity to gain knowledge. It may sound contradictory, but for inclusiveness when it comes to knowledge sharing, it is actually good to make a distinction. Try to categorise students by level, age, and functions as much as possible. Create various personas, and associated learning lines. Don't be frugal when it comes to using new technology.

You can use AI unscrupulously to design different storylines that move flexibly with the student's individual choices. In this way, you ensure that the story is as close as possible to the personal world of experience.

This offers everyone the opportunity to access the information at their own pace.

5. Keep surprising

Avoid a long list of tiles that are almost indistinguishable. Thirteen in a dozen doesn't invite you to click through to your knowledge platform over and over again. Storytelling can, no, always surprise, emotion and amuse. Make employees curious about what you've just come up with when it comes to training.

So don't always take the same flight path to convey knowledge. One time, choose a video, the next time a podcast or game, and then another infographic or an old school story.

And, here we have it again: use the principle of flipped classroom, where you alternate online storytelling with sharing stories in the classroom.

At Pluvo, we can tell you countless stories about the importance of storytelling. Curious about our experiences? Contact us, then we'd love to share them with you!

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