The Art of L&D Data Storytelling [Introduction]

Once you’ve collected, measured, and evaluated your learning data—what’s next? How do you use that information to promote L&D and show off the value and impact of your learning programs? This blog series will show you how to plan, craft, and execute engaging and exciting stories that directly relate to various areas, teams, and departments across your organization.

Why data storytelling?

Understanding the importance of telling compelling stories with data is essential for L&D—whether it's gaining stakeholder buy-in for learning analytics, establishing credibility across the organization, providing product education, or sharing customer success stories.

Let's face it, guiding someone through a relatable narrative is way more effective than telling someone, “Hey, look at this pretty graph!”

In other words, effectively telling stories with data is more than sharing a line chart or bar graph and expecting someone to understand or even care. And simply because something is impressive to you doesn’t mean it’s relevant to your audience. One result can have three different stories depending on who it’s for.

Long story short…

You need to share a story that builds on the initial concept you pitched. Specifically, demonstrate how your training program delivers on organizational goals with which it was first aligned. Start with the answer that aligns with the business priorities or metrics and work your way backward—even if the result wasn’t hypothesized, a story told through data will be good.

Remember, data storytelling is critical. You need to know where and how to look for essential details of the data and share a meaningful story once you have that information in hand.

And, by the time you’re finished with this series, you’ll have the confidence and tools to build a narrative around your insights to drive L&D’s strategic impact across your organization.

In this blog series, we’ll:

Up Next: Data Storytelling Basics

Join us for our next post in this series as we cover the basics of crafting an interesting, compelling story with your facts and figures. And be sure to sign up for Watershed Insights to have posts delivered straight to your inbox.

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