Change in every church is difficult, but necessary. Things that are alive, change. One powerful tool that can help move change forward in your church is storytelling. I’ve excerpted a brief portion of my fourth book Brain-Savvy Leaders, the Science of Significant Ministry below that describes the power of storytelling to create change.
Narrative persuasion is a technique that uses indirect communication through story and example. Often we try to persuade others with a direct approach that communicates just the facts, like, “We are going to make a change, and here are the reasons why.” The direct approach often is not effective. Neuroscientists have confirmed common sense that storytelling has a powerful effect on behavior (Falk et al., 2012).
Storytelling helps others “see” through the eyes of another. As you solicit feedback as you prepare for your change, look for stories of people who are managing the change well. Tell their stories as you give updates about your progress. When your team members can see successful responses to change through stories of others, it will help them navigate the change better.
How has storytelling helped you move a change initiative forward in your church?
- Brain-Savvy Leaders: The Science of Significant Ministry by Charles Stone (Kindle Locations 2746-2752). Abingdon Press. Kindle Edition (permission granted for use).
- Falk, E. B., Berkman, E. T., Mann, T., Harrison, B., & Lieberman, M. D. (2010, June 23). Predicting persuasion-induced behavior change from the brain. The Journal of Neuroscience, 30( 25), 8421– 24.