Telling our story

Story

Storytelling is a powerful way to make an impact on your audience – no matter the subject, no matter the audience. People recall stories more easily than facts and figures. They form connections based on the emotions that stories produce.

For instance, our Center for Human Identification is world class, but it becomes more memorable when you explain how it aids law enforcement in solving cold cases and how it brings closure to families by identifying human remains.

Interprofessional education is important, but it makes more sense to a lay audience when you explain that health care providers working in teams will improve the care they receive now and in the future.

Use some of these story-telling tips to improve your communication:

Show, don’t tell

Use concrete examples to drive home your message.

  • Vague: SaferCare Texas is a team effort.
  • Stronger: The Health Science Center’s SaferCare Texas is a team of interprofessional patient safety experts, changing the landscape by giving patients information they understand, simplifying medical forms and teaching healthcare providers how to communicate more effectively.

Explain how HSC programs improve lives

  • Vague: The Asthma 411 program improves the health of Fort Worth children.
  • Stronger: The Health Science Center’s “Asthma 411” program gives school nurses the equipment, training and medical clearance to treat students’ asthma attacks in the schools, keeping children from missing class, parents from missing work and reducing costly trips to emergency

Share stories

  • Vague: The Texas Center for Performing Arts is a unique partnership between TCOM and the UNT College of Music.
  • Stronger: In the Texas Center for Performing Arts, dancers have found a physician who not only treats their pain but understands their need to perform in spite of it.

Avoid jargon

Always consider your audience. For scientific or medical crowds, technical language may be appropriate. But other audiences may be confused by language you would otherwise commonly use. For these groups, keep it conversational. Communicate as if you were speaking to a family, friend or neighbor.

  • Jargon: “The patient presented with…”
  • Clearer: “The patient showed symptoms of…”

This page was last modified on February 27, 2020