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School of Continuing Studies

XCOM-701 - Fundamentals of Social Impact Storytelling

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Storytelling is inextricably linked to what it means to be a human being. Before there were formal forms of communication, our ancestors were telling stories through cave paintings, ancient hieroglyphics, and around the campfire as a way to connect and share knowledge. Today, storytelling has had a renaissance of importance as research has proven that stories can drive targeted action on behalf of important social impact issues. This course provides students with foundational knowledge about the historic usage of stories in order to understand how to harness that power of influence for modern day applications within social impact settings. Students will also learn a strategic story plan framework developed by Georgetown University’s Center for Social Impact Communication that they will utilize throughout the certificate in order to create a portfolio of stories.

Course Objectives

Learning Objectives

  • Explain why the CSIC Story Plan Framework should be used to develop stories
  • Explain how stories are a tool for influence
  • Define the goals of storytelling for social impact
  • Describe the current state of social impact storytelling
  • Differentiate between content and stories
  • Assess the use of content and stories within a social impact setting
Impact Factory

Storytelling for Business Course

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Storytelling Course for Business

Next dates

May 14
London, United Kingdom
GBP 450 ≈USD 584
GBP 450 per day
Jul 16
London, United Kingdom
GBP 450 ≈USD 584
GBP 450 per day
Sep 16
London, United Kingdom
GBP 450 ≈USD 584
GBP 450 per day
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Data-driven information tends to speak to people's intellect – while stories stir their imagination and reach their feelings.

That's what makes stories such a powerful tool to engage and motivate.

Working with the dynamics of storytelling will help you deliver your business messages in more compelling ways. It will help you to present and communicate with passion and to engage directly with peoples feelings.

We will equip you with the skills and confidence to use the power of storytelling in business.

Course Objectives

  • The Power of Storytelling
  • Discover Your Innate Ability
  • De-Mystify Telling a Story
  • Bring Facts and Figures Alive
  • Storytelling Techniques
  • Creating a Compelling Narrative
  • How to Structure a Story
  • Making Presentations Dynamic
  • Creating Buy-In
  • Storytelling Elements
  • Opportunities to Practice

Course Content

The course will be tailored to reflect the needs of the delegates on the day.

We will include many of the exercises listed below, and any additional material that the trainers feel is relevant.

Delegate Input

You'll get the opportunity to say why you've come and what you would like to take away from the day.

This allows us to adapt the programme to make sure we meet everyone’s needs.

History of Storytelling

A brief discussion on how we are hardwired to respond to stories and how they can be powerful tools to use in business.

Why Tell Stories?

People love stories and here we explore the neuroscience behind why stories resonate with us.

Jumpstart Storytelling

Without further ado, we jump straight into the first storytelling exercise, inviting the participants to share a story.

Using personal stories from your preparation we will create an emotionally expressive environment for the rest of the day.

Storytelling Elements

We will then unpick the stories people have told in terms of structure and storytelling devices.

This will help you begin to appreciate that we are already natural storytellers.

Sitting Round the Table

Here delegates will 'sit around the table' (Campfire!) weaving storytelling elements into a business idea.

A Different Perspective

Using fairy tales and other classic stories people retell the story from one (often minor) character’s perspective.

We then look at how this impacts on the power of the story and changes how we hear it.

The Most Important Thing

Having heard quite a few stories at this point we look at what people remember, how they remember.

We also explore the question:

  • Can you change the MIT?
  • Why would you want to?
  • What impact would that have?

Bringing Data Alive

Data and facts alone are not enough.

Here we look at how easy it is for assumptions and misinterpretations to be made from incomplete facts, open-ended information and pieces of the puzzle that don't quite connect.

We look at how to use your data and facts to tell the story you want rather than leaving it to chance.

Storytelling Techniques

The majority of the day will be spent introducing a variety of different storytelling techniques that have proven effective in business.

We will offer you the opportunity to apply those techniques to your own situations and challenges.

The choice of technique will depend on the participants’ specific requirements.


A look at how connective phrases enhance stories and can build anticipation or tension.


Delegates practice creating analogies that help when they have factual information/ numbers /data to deliver in order to help the material become accessible. This exercise can also look at the ‘meaning’ behind numbers.

Story Structure

Here we introduce a variety of story structures, and we will choose three to demonstrate depending upon what would be most appropriate for the delegates on the day.

Business Challenge

Initially working in pairs, delegates will choose a business idea for which they want buy-in.

Using one of the story structures that most fits their personal style, they will write and present a story, building a compelling case for their idea.

Summing Up

To draw the day to a conclusion, we reflect upon the experience (the story) of the day and the tools that were explored.

You'll have the chance to share with the group your highlights of the day

And how you will use your favourite storytelling tool – within the next seven days!

You will identify what will stop you putting this into practice and what support you need going forward.

We will give out Impact Factory documents to support the course.

You'll get copies relevant hand-outs to remind you of the Coursework.

Ongoing Support

Two weeks after the course one of your trainers will call to see how you are getting on.

You will have email and telephone access to both of your trainers.

You'll also have access to a course web page containing

  • Handouts used during the course
  • New supportive material
  • Impact Factory PDF documents
  • Recommended reading
  • Links to our favourite videos
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