The 7 P’s of a great story

Here is a great outline to follow when creating a story. This list comes from a storytelling workshop presented by Dorian Haarhoff at the Toastmasters Conference in Port Elizabeth.

  • People
  • Place
  • Problem
  • Pleasant
  • Plan
  • Process
  • Product

Take Little Red Riding Hood for example:

  • People   – Red Riding Hood, her grandmother, the woodcutter and the wicked wolf
  • Place   – a forest
  • Pleasant – Red Riding Hood going to visit her grandmother
  • Problem  – the wolf eats and then masquerades as grandmother
  • Plan   – chop off the wolf?s head
  • Process  – saved by the woodcutter
  • Product  – we all live happily ever after

Remember, facts tell, and stories sell ? so go out and write some great stories.

How Linked in are you?


I just came across a great article on Ramon Thomas? website about the power of LinkedIn. He gives a brief overview of social networking and then discusses LinkedIn specifically. There are some great suggestions on how to grow your network, and more importantly, who you should grow your network! Ramon should know ? he has over 1000 connections.

One of the most powerful comments he makes is that most people who get business through connections get it not from a direction connection, but from one of their connections. Eg – a friend of a friend. So, you aquire business through weak, and not strong connections. This means that the bigger you can grow your network, the more you are creating business opportunites for yoursef!

I have been growing my LinkedIn network ? I am up to 134 (from about 110 a week ago), and my goal is to get to 200 by the end of May. So come on over, and let’s link.

Here is a link to my profile.


8 tips from Mark Brown

MarkbrownHere are eight thoughts that Mark left us with when he was at our Toastmasters Conference last May.

  • What do you want the audience to think differently about when they leave the room?
  • It is not about being sensational, it is about being sincere.
  • It is not what you can offer, it is what does the audience want.
  • Stories do not need to be mind-blowing, they just need a point.
  • Everybody has stories.
  • Be aware of others – listen to them, learn their names.
  • Be humble – you are speaking for others.
  • Be descriptive.

Follow these ideas, and you will present a great speech!

ps: If you ever have the opportunity to hear Mark Brown speak, please do – he has a great message (and a pretty amazing voice as well!)