Critical messages risk getting lost amid the noise and uncertainty of COVID-19. How can you make messages stick in times of disruption? With one of your most powerful tools: Stories.

Stories make messages stick

When your staff is being pushed to the max; when leadership must share new strategies or protocols; when everyone needs support for their mental wellbeing - storytelling can help overcome communication challenges. Our partners at The Advisory Board remind us why.

Stories work because they:

  • Evoke emotion.
  • Convey a situation with imagery and a timeline.
  • Enable empathy.
  • Allow less room for misunderstanding.
  • Create an emotional association with images, thereby anchoring memory.

Patient stories help your teams see the difference they make and re-connect them to their purpose.

Staff stories re-connect employees to one another, reminding them how valuable they are during COVID-19 and the unique experience they share. And as they fight feelings of being overwhelmed, staff stories remind them they are not alone.

How your staff can share their own stories

When you call another emergency planning meeting, ask a member of your staff to kick it off with a 90-second story. But keep it short and simple.

Compelling 90-second storytelling contains three elements:

  • Value. Select a specific value like service excellence, the joy of practice or caring.
  • Experience. Share who was involved and what happened.
  • Mission. Connect the experience to your organization's mission.

That's it.

Storytelling is just as powerful when managers have to share new ways of working, rules and regulations brought about by COVID-19.

During the coming weeks and months, rumors will run wild, people will grapple with fear and anxiety, and mental health needs will be high. Our advice? Start your meetings off with something uplifting or contextualizing. Meaningful stories cut through the noise, reminding everyone what we're trying to do and why.

We're here to share resources for COVID-19 readiness

At CMG Health Marketing, we understand the critical role providers play during these unprecedented times. We're here for you. If there's any way we can help, please give us a call.