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“A story should have a start, a middle and an end.”

This is the most generic answer to the question “how should I structure my story”. But at the same time it is probably the most unsatisfying one. 🫤

It helps more if we look at the 5-component story: Introduction – Rising action – Aha Moment – Resolution – call to action. This brings the suspense into your story. 🫣

At the same time however, your story needs to offer orientation or perspective or a storyline. Applying this to your story is great, and even more helpful when guiding through one particular graph 📈. Just select the one that suits your line of reasoning best:

Change over time 🕖 – many times used to show a chronological development of data or a process.

Drill down 🔎➕ Start at the big picture and go further into the details. End with a specific example to draw a picture.

Zoom out 🔍➖ This is the opposite of “drill down”. Start small and apply this example to the bigger picture

Contrast 🍏🍐 Compare A to B. Why is it different to one another?

Intersection 🚦❎ Where data intersects, there might be a story. Or an answer. Think of the supply/demand curve: where it meets = price

Dissection of factors 🔪 here we challenge the data and events according to their correlation and dependencies. This helps when the data is seemingly chaotic and you guide your audience through by organizing it.

Outliers 🚩 focus on the outliers and add the impact of surprise when you realize this is some valuable insight!

Happy presenting!

( Picture source: Adobe Stock)

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