The Queen died. The King died.

Take 1: The Queen died. The King died.

Take 2: The Queen died. And the King died of a broken heart.

Five extra words transformed two boring facts into a story capable of stirring emotion (“Aww”). There’s a lot of talk about storytelling with mental pictures of Steve Jobs floating around. But, if you had to be reductionist, the formula (probably) would be –

Stories = Facts + Context + Emotion

As we move from one meeting to the next pitching our ideas, it is worth remembering that facts and logic only help people reach conclusions. Stories, however, bring emotion to the table.

And, it is emotion that drives action.

(H/T Dan Pink – for such a memorable illustration on the power of stories.)