Story Telling From Outside

While I totally get the idea of story telling in research reports, I also feel it's often much more difficult to pull off than some of the so-called research pundits make it out to be. More often than not, the reports we do resemble more a short story collection--with each slide it's own narrative, sometimes connected to a slide three pages downstream and sometimes totally disconnected, because often there are different, quite separate research objectives. There are, of course those really pleasant exceptions when the objectives and the insights align so that there is a cohesive arc to the story that runs through the length of the report. But those seem much more rare.


I bring this up, because I am often on the lookout for how others, especially those in industries outside of research, tell a compelling story with data. I firmly believe we can learn from those outside of the research discipline. And not just those whose main job is to tell a story, like writers of books and movie scripts.


Well, I found an intriguing that uses intriguing charts to make their points. I found it engaging.


You can read it here in this Slate story that helps you determine whether the new movie Midsommar is too scary for you to watch. I went into it believing that it is too scary for me. That's because I am a total wimp when it comes to horror films. But, on a dare, I did go see Stephen King's IT and really was not scared by it. In fact I enjoyed it. But there is no way I am ever going to watch anything with a hockey mask knife wielding crazy. What I like about the article is that they use some innovative graphics and 1-10 scales to engage the reader and really help the reader get the message. In fact, I was a bit envious that I never thought of their approach to use in a report. So applause for the Slate folks and their innovative use of graphics to engage the reader and make a point.