How my executive coach helped me learn and use the Disney Storytelling method with my presentations

Executive coaching is a valuable resource for individuals who want to improve their leadership skills and advance their careers. One of the most critical skills that executives need to develop is the ability to communicate effectively.

In particular, executives need to be able to tell compelling stories that engage and inspire their audience. In this blog post, I want to share how my executive coach helped me learn and use the Disney storytelling method with my presentations.

“Leadership is the capacity to translate vision into reality.”

– Warren Bennis


The Disney storytelling method consists of three parts

These are often referred to as the “three rooms” or the “three hats.” These three parts are:

  1. The Dreamer:

In the first part of the Disney storytelling method, the dreamer hat is put on. This involves brainstorming and coming up with ideas for the story. The focus is on generating as many ideas as possible without any limitations or constraints. The goal is to let the creativity flow freely and explore all possibilities.

To facilitate the dreamer stage, it can be helpful to use techniques such as mind mapping, brainstorming, or free writing. The goal is to generate as many ideas as possible without worrying about whether or not they are practical or feasible.

  1. The Realist:

Once the dreamer hat has been removed, the realist hat is put on. This involves analyzing and evaluating the ideas that were generated in the dreamer stage. The focus is on identifying which ideas are feasible, practical, and aligned with the overall goal of the story. This stage involves asking questions and applying critical thinking to ensure that the story is well-crafted and has a clear structure.

To facilitate the realist stage, it can be helpful to ask questions such as:

  • Is this idea aligned with the overall goal of the story?
  • Is this idea feasible given the resources and time available?
  • Is this idea practical and likely to be well-received by the audience?
  1. The Critic:

Finally, the critic hat is put on. This stage involves reviewing and refining the story to ensure that it is the best it can be. The focus is on identifying any weaknesses or areas for improvement and making changes as necessary. This stage involves seeking feedback and making revisions until the story is polished and ready to be shared with the audience.

To facilitate the critic stage, it can be helpful to seek feedback from others and incorporate their suggestions into the story. It’s important to be open to constructive criticism and willing to make changes to improve the story. The goal is to create a story that is engaging, effective, and memorable.

By breaking the storytelling process into these three distinct parts, the Disney storytelling method allows individuals to approach the process in a structured and methodical way, while still allowing room for creativity and imagination. The dreamer, realist, and critic stages are designed to work together seamlessly to create a story that is engaging, effective, and memorable.

“All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them.”

– Walt Disney

As an executive, I realized that I needed to improve my communication skills, particularly my ability to tell compelling stories that would engage and inspire my audience. That’s when I decided to hire an executive coach to help me with this area of my professional development.

My executive coach introduced me to the Disney storytelling method and helped me use it with my presentations. She taught me how to use the three parts of the Disney storytelling method to create stories that would capture my audience’s attention and convey my message effectively.


The Disney storytelling method is a powerful technique

It can help individuals develop compelling and engaging stories for various purposes, including presentations, marketing, branding, and content creation. Here are some of the benefits of using the Disney storytelling method:

  1. Captures Attention:

One of the key benefits of the Disney storytelling method is that it captures the audience’s attention from the beginning. By setting up the story with a strong introduction that establishes the characters, the setting, and the conflict, the audience is drawn into the story and becomes invested in the outcome.

  1. Creates Emotional Connection:

The Disney storytelling method is designed to evoke emotions and create a connection between the audience and the story. By creating relatable characters and a relatable conflict, the audience can identify with the story and feel invested in the outcome.

  1. Engages the Audience:

The Disney storytelling method is a powerful tool for engaging the audience and keeping their attention throughout the story. By introducing tension and drama, the audience is kept on the edge of their seat and wants to know what happens next.

  1. Conveys a Message:

The Disney storytelling method is also an effective way to convey a message or a lesson. By resolving the conflict and showing the characters achieving their goals, the audience learns the lesson or message that the story conveys.

  1. Enhances Memorability:

The Disney storytelling method is a great way to make stories more memorable. By creating a narrative that is engaging and emotionally resonant, the audience is more likely to remember the story and the message it conveys.

  1. Facilitates Decision Making:

The Disney storytelling method can also be used to facilitate decision-making. By presenting a conflict and showing how the characters make decisions to overcome the obstacle, the audience can learn valuable lessons about problem-solving and decision-making that they can apply in their own lives.

  1. Builds Brand Awareness:

The Disney storytelling method is also a great tool for building brand awareness. By creating a story that is aligned with the brand’s values and mission, the audience can connect with the brand on an emotional level and become more loyal customers.


The Disney storytelling method is a powerful tool

It can help individuals and businesses communicate more effectively and achieve their goals. By using this method, individuals can create stories that capture attention, create emotional connections, engage the audience, convey a message, enhance memorability, facilitate decision-making, and build brand awareness. 

“The art of storytelling is reaching its climax as a key communication tool in the business world.”

– Peter Guber

For example, I was working on a presentation for a new product launch. I wanted to convey the product’s features and benefits in a way that would be memorable and engaging. My coach helped me develop a story that would do just that. Here’s how we create the story:

The Setup:

We introduced the main character, a customer who was struggling with a particular problem. We established what the problem was and why it was important to solve.

The Conflict:

We introduced the product as the solution to the customer’s problem. However, we also introduced a new obstacle, a competitor who was also offering a similar solution. This created tension and drama in the story.

The Resolution:

We showed how the customer chose our product over the competitor’s product and how our product helped solve the customer’s problem. We also conveyed the message that our product was the best solution on the market.

Using the Disney storytelling method helped me create a story that was engaging, persuasive, and memorable. The story helped me capture my audience’s attention and convey my message effectively.

My executive coach also taught me other valuable storytelling techniques that I could use in my presentations. For example, she taught me about the power of using anecdotes and personal stories to illustrate key points. She also taught me how to use metaphors and analogies to make complex concepts more accessible.

In addition to teaching me storytelling techniques, my executive coach also helped me develop my public speaking skills. She taught me how to project my voice, make eye contact, and use body language effectively. She also helped me practice my presentations and gave me feedback on my performance.

“Great stories happen to those who can tell them.”

– Ira Glass



In conclusion, executive coaching is a valuable resource for individuals who want to improve their leadership skills and advance their careers. Effective communication skills, including the ability to tell compelling stories, are critical for success in any executive role.

The Disney storytelling method is a powerful tool that executives can use to create engaging, persuasive, and memorable stories. A coach can help executives learn and use this method effectively, as well as provide guidance on other storytelling and public speaking techniques. By working with a coach, executives can develop the skills they need to communicate effectively and inspire their audience, which can ultimately lead to greater success in their careers.

In addition to the benefits of improving communication and leadership skills, executive coaching can also provide individuals with a valuable sounding board for their ideas and strategies. A coach can provide an objective perspective and help individuals identify blind spots or areas for improvement. This feedback can be invaluable for executives who are looking to grow and develop in their careers.

When searching for an executive coach, it’s important to find someone who has experience working with individuals in similar roles or industries. Look for coaches who have a track record of success and who have strong references or testimonials from previous clients. It’s also important to find someone who you feel comfortable working with and who can provide the support and guidance you need to achieve your goals.


Related Articles

The Power and Potential Pitfalls of Disney Storytelling

The Hero’s Journey Narrative for Stories in Business Environments

Leading Change through Story: Insights of a Coach


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