The power of breakthrough storytelling


I was honored to have been asked to be on the program committee for March’s OCLC Resource Sharing Conference. Meeting with and learning from my US colleagues is always exciting, and I was so pleased to see several other Canadian librarians in attendance at the conference. The acquisition of Relais International by OCLC made this conference highly relevant to the Canadian ILL community, as we really need to be a part of the future direction of our ILL systems; we need to be part of the story. I was excited to bring forward Todd Babiak, Canadian author and entrepreneur in the storytelling business. His keynote presentation, “Breakthrough Storytelling—What a powerful narrative can do for your library,” really helped anchor the entire conference for me.

Storytelling is an important method to help people understand where you come from, your values, your challenges and successes. We can apply this to our individual lives, but more importantly, we can apply this to our institutions and programs to help people grasp the important roles libraries play in society and our institutions. That’s where Todd’s talk comes in. He reminds us that when we share our accomplishments as stories—as opposed to lists, bullets, logos and statistics—they come alive for our users. We’re already doing great things on behalf of the people we serve. Storytelling skills simply give us a more compelling way to share those breakthroughs.

It’s a great talk. I hope you’ll take a few minutes to watch.