Main conference presentation

Storytelling - a compelling design tool

Dorelle Rabinowitz

Monday April 14 2008, 8:30 - 9:15AM

Everyone agrees that stories are powerful and add impact - your audience remembers stories and passes them on. How you tell your story makes a big difference too, and the more personal and poignant - the more the audience can identify, making the message more effective. Storytelling is a powerful way to bring a concept to life, and I recommend we do it more often as a design tool.

Many of you are already using storytelling techniques -- through personas and scenarios. But there are other phases of the design process where storytelling can augment methods. During user research sharing stories connect us with our subjects. Storytelling helps teams collaborate. When we articulate concepts we can establish credibility by telling a story. It’s especially compelling as an adjunct to diagrams and numbers -- a good story can facilitate buy-in and approval of solutions. From problem definition to research, team building to communication, stories are a winning tool to gain consensus, improve collaborative relationships and create user experiences that resonate.

This presentation will demonstrate how to combine storytelling techniques with the user-centered methodologies we are already practicing. Building on work by Tom Erickson, Dana Atchley and others, we'll listen to stories, practice telling our own, and learn when, where, why and how to add storytelling to our toolkit.

CrowdVine network

Discussions about this years conference are still ongoing on our CrowdVine community site.