The Power of Good Storytelling with Lucy Perry CEO

5 Powerful Story Telling Tips

Friday 2nd September was the very first #likeaBOSS16 conference hosted by Sunrise Cambodia and their CEO, Lucy Perry.

I first saw Lucy speak at an event in 2015 and I was mesmerized. At that particular event, she walked out on stage in a leather jacket, jeans and proceeded to booty shake for the entire audience before going on to share some of the most powerful stories I have ever heard.

At the time I was the Director of a design firm and I was miserable. I was surrounded by executives who I did not aspire to be and my career path felt like it was over.

Lucy reminded me that my career was nowhere near over. Having once founded and successfully growing a charity only to be fired as the CEO, Lucy had dug deep and come out on top with a new career as an amazing and inspiring speaker. The story was compelling!

Lucy is now the CEO of Sunrise Cambodia and the mastermind behind the #likeaboss events.

During #likeaboss Lucy provided a great breakdown of storytelling techniques for public speakers and it was fantastic! For aspiring speakers or those more comfortable on stage, the tips below provide a solid framework for powerful storytelling to up-level your speaking skills.

5 Powerful Storytelling Techniques for Speakers



 #1. Audition every wordEvery word has to have a purpose, a reason for being delivered.  Don’t use big words. Speak using words that you would use in everyday life. It needs to sound like a conversation you are having.

#2. The BEST Stories Rise above AdversityThe stories you share while speaking need to have a purpose, a reason for being included.  People love stories that rise above adversity.

Lucy shared a beautiful story about a young girl, Waew, who came to Sunrise Cambodia after being burned in an acid attack. She had lost one eye, an ear, and her face is scared. Waew had been sold into a criminal begging ring before being found by Sunrise Cambodia at 10 years of age.Recently Waew flew by herself to Geneva to present at an event focused on acid burns. She delivered her entire presentation in English and you can see a copy of her speech here –


#3. Surprise & DelightThink about what makes a story funny. Some of the best stories are those that include ‘Surprise & Delight’.

Lucy shared with the audience a hilarious story about the birth of her daughter during a BBQ she was hosting at the house.

I won’t relay the story as it is best to hear it from Lucy directly, but it was a fantastic demonstration of ‘Surprise & Delight’.

#4. Create an Emotional ConnectionIf a story gives you an emotional reaction,  like goose bumps or stirs up tears, then that story has created an emotional connection and this is something great speakers will use to engage their audience.

This isn’t about being dishonest or fabricating stories out of thin air to drive engagement.

Lucy delivered this information by unpicking some of the great speeches we have heard throughout history so that we could learn.

Use evidence in stories that your audience can relate too.But be warned. You never know who is in your audience. Be careful when using stories and jokes that may cause offense.

#5. Use Stories to Illustrate a PointThe funnier you are, the more memorable and entertaining you will be and the more bookings you will secure!

Why storytelling?

You voice dances when you tell a story that you have a connection too.When you are delivering facts, your voice is monotone, dull, and in some cases boring. Storytelling adds life.

This article was recommended by Lucy during her presentation – “It’s nice to be nice, but it’s better to be BOLD” by Jane Caro.

When asked how Lucy handles her fear while speaking, she left us with a great quote that I also wanted to share…

Do something every day that frightens you.” Eleanor Roosevelt.

Storytelling is so important in so many areas of communication that I feel the above points would be applicable to the written word as much as spoken.

Powerful Storytelling Techniques for Speakers

Do you have a powerful public speaking technique to share? I’d would love to hear it in the comments below, or head to our Facebook Page which has all the action.

Ciao for now.

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