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Ending '23 with new services in inclusive storytelling!

Updated: Nov 26, 2023

Elma has a brown skin tone and shoulder length curly hair. She wears glasses and smiles at the camera. She wears a multicoloured top.
Photo by John Ferguson.

As we head towards the end of the western calendar year, I’m beginning to review the last 11 months. But before I dive into an end-of-year round-up, I’d like to share my refreshed offering!

If you know me or if you’ve been following me for the last 2-3 years, you’ll be aware of the shift in my work.

A happy, if unexpected, change in professional direction led me to merge my communications and marketing expertise with equality, diversity and inclusion, with an emphasis on anti-racism.

I started working in a deeper and more authentic way with people who’ve historically been excluded and ignored by society. Be they in our communities or company employees.

My work allows their unique voices to shine through, which means including the whole picture, not just the glossy parts.

Working in a supportive way, I delve into stories to reveal something more genuine, emotive and humanising. I’ve seen how powerfully people respond to authenticity - it can change lives for the better. At the very least, we can all appreciate a story with substance.

We need to hear such stories to help right the huge social imbalances, which have roots in colonialism and negatively affect the vast majority of our population.

Embracing this more inclusive way of working is better for our relationships, for our communities, for the economy and ultimately for the planet and its people. But tackling racism is the thing that most organisations and brands avoid. Because of fear, confusion or bias.

This inclusion work doesn’t take away from anyone. In fact, it enriches our understanding of the world around us. Who wouldn’t we want that?
A black womwn with brown curly hair which is up in a pony tail. She wears glasses and holds a clear glass award. She wears a black top wih a gold star on the chest. The big screen behind her has the worlds Radical Changemaker Award  on it. And the awards logo.
Winning a national museums award for engagement work for Power of Stories in Suffolk. (c) Museums Association

What do I mean by ‘stories’?

Stories are narratives or accounts that convey a sequence of events, experiences, or information. From a colleague telling you about their weekend to a captivating Maya Angelou poem, we share experiences through storytelling.

The tales we tell help us to develop a deeper understanding of our lives and each other. Some stories preserve culture and heritage, where others enable us to build trust or boost productivity.

Every organisation and person on the planet is in a position to influence positive change through more inclusive communications,

I’m here to guide you through the process.

My inclusive process

I’ve developed my four-step L.U.C.K process to ensure your storytelling allows people’s diversity and authenticity shine brightly.

Also, my approach to community engagement involves communicating with more care and attention, which is a departure from the usual engagement strategies, which are based on the standards created by organisations with few or no links to communities.

Both storytelling and engagement processes require more honest relationship building. This often means handing over control to the people. For me, this is not actually 'radical' (although I'm grateful for my Radical Changemaker award!), it's just how marginalised communities operate.

However, for the most organisations, it feels progressive, because the structures and values differ. But this doesn't mean the two can't harmonise.

Due to my lived experience and communications expertise, I can build mutually immediate and trusted bonds with global majority people.

By taking this deeper approach, you're more likely to capture the information you really need, and lower the risk earning a reputation for tokenism and ivory tower complex.

The good news is that many organisations are changing practices, whether it's higher standards of exhibition curation, more inclusive recruitment or more relevant branding. It all impacts the footprint you leave in society.

Elma is a woman with brown skin tone. She has shoulder length brown and blonde hair. She wears a pink blazer with black geomertic print on it, a black cami top undernearth and blue jeans. She wears glasses and is smiling. She's holding a remote controller and stands to the side of a clear plastic lecturn with two microphones,and there's the bottm corner of a big screen to the left.
At the Arts Marketing Association Conference 2023, (c) Arts Marketing Association.

My range of services

I offer…

  • Consultancy, in-person and online, using the above process and other practices.

  • Strategy development.

  • Workshops.

  • Public speaking.

  • Community engagement.

My work is valuable for...

  • Audience development.

  • Community engagement.

  • Content production, e.g. case studies, narratives, interviews, scripts and articles.

  • Cultural intelligence.

  • Employee training.

  • Exhibitions.

  • Research.

Who should work with me?

I work with anyone who’s ready to tell stories in a more balanced way, and which is more representative of our society, including…

  • Arts and cultural organisations.

  • Businesses.

  • Charities.

  • Creative and marketing agencies.

  • Heritage organisations.

  • Local authorities.

  • Media companies.

  • Membership organisations.

  • Professional networks.

  • Publishers.

  • Universities.

If you’d like to have a chat about a project you have coming up, drop me a line:

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