The Empathy Connection

Storytelling as a Catalyst for Stronger Teams

This learning experience is designed to improve empathy, connectivity, and inclusivity among teams by teaching them strategic storytelling techniques. Specifically, the Alliance@work Storytelling Pair and Share process teaches the team how to tell compelling stories and then encourages them to put themselves in each other’s shoes, understand the other person’s perspective, and retell their partner’s story in the first-person voice. This approach helps them understand the other person’s experiences and insights while also respecting them. The outcome is improved emotional intelligence, leading to better cooperation and mutual respect.


Following the session, the team will be able to...

  • Craft strategic personal stories with vivid sensory details and authentic narrative flow to spotlight profound experiences.
  • Actively listen without judgment or interruption to better understand colleagues’ perspectives and motivations.
  • Articulate a clear point of view on critical issues.
  • Foster collaborative relationships internally and externally.

What it could look like

Here is a suggested agenda for this session. It can be customized to align with the team’s specific
needs including learning outcomes, session duration, and job scenarios to ensure effectiveness.

Setting the Stage

45 minutes

The session will start with warm-up and focus exercises, for example:

Interview and Introduce through Story

In pairs, the team shares their communication strengths and weaknesses and childhood aspirations and introduces their partner to the group using childhood information as a storytelling device to share the other information.

Building the Tool Kit

90 minutes

Next, the team will learn through interactive activities that focus on these specific skills aligned to on-the-job situations.

  • Understanding empathy as a business driver
  • Active listening
  • Providing feedback that promotes a creative process
  • Using the fundamentals of effective storytelling to illustrate what is meaningful and useful
Putting into Practice

75 minutes

Then the team will show their work.

Empathetic Storytelling Pair and Share with Coaching

The teams work in pairs to share their stories and provide coaching to each other.

In Round One, one partner shares their story while the other listens.

In Round Two, the partner retells the story as if it were their own.

Moving Forward

15 minutes

The session ends with time to reflect on what has been learned.

Our Implementation Plan

The team will discuss individual and collective strategies to apply session concepts and tools to their job goals.



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