You know the feeling…

You are presenting at your organization at 5 pm, and all you get is a dazed and apathetic look from your tired audience.

If you are like me, their reaction bothers you a little. 

How do you inject some life into them?

How do you give meaning to the projects they are working on?

How do you make them respond to you?

One way to do this is to share a personal story to make your audience relate to you, even bond with you.

Yes, even bond with you. That’s when they’ll tune in and listen to you instead of falling into a daze.

The story will make them feel that you are one of them and not just a corporate talking head.

To demonstrate this, I have to use Barack Obama. I’m not using him because of any political affiliation, but only because I am a student of influence and I like to acknowledge people who communicate well.

Here is a snippet from Obama’s 2004 Democratic National Convention Keynote:

“…let me express my deep gratitude for the privilege of addressing this convention. Tonight is a particular honor for me because let’s face it, my presence on this stage is pretty unlikely. My father was a foreign student, born and raised in a small village in Kenya. He grew up herding goats, went to school in a tin-roof shack. His father, my grandfather, was a cook, a domestic servant…”

Obama acknowledges the fact that it’s unlikely for someone like him to be there. He is relating to all those who thought his presence on stage would be impossible. Then he continues with his story, referring to every segment of the population and starting with immigrants as you can see above.


I know that sometimes in corporate life we avoid using our personal stories. Even though we know that sharing our stories is an effective way to engage and move people.

It’s sometimes because we are shy, we don’t know the professional boundaries, or we just don’t know what to say.

If that’s the case for you, then I invite you to participate in the next Magnetic Storytelling Boot Camp: Where you will get over your shyness and learn how to tell the seven stories, every business leader must know how to tell.

After the training, you will be more influential, more engaging and a better business leader.


Peter Khoury

Peter Khoury: Founder @ MagneticSpeaking X-Pharmaceutical Engineer, turned author, national speaker and executive presentation coach.

In addition to Public Speaking training, Peter is a regular speaker on the topics of Negotiations, Conflict Management and Leadership. He is the author of the book “Self-Leadership Guide.