K. Sean Buvala is a Trainer, Corporate Coach, and Speaker. But first and foremost, he’s a Storyteller.
If you’re anything like me, this word evokes images of rapt little faces gathered round the yarn-spinner, mouths agape, hanging on every word. It should. Storytelling is an art that appeals to the deep emotional memory in all of us. Unlike motivational speaking, which seeks to uplift the listener and spur to him action, storytelling strengthens our powers of creativity and problem solving by drawing on our own imaginations.
In short, storytelling conveys information in a way the listener will never forget.
In 2007 Sean Buvala was presented the Oracle Award by the National Storytelling Network for his work in the promotion of storytelling, including the development of Storyteller.net, an online goldmine of resources for storytellers and their audiences alike.
His work as a trainer and coach in the corporate word demonstrates his ability as a master storyteller. On the premise that good leadership requires strong communication skills, good storytelling techniques and the ability to convey information with impact, Sean designs workshops and seminars specifically for corporate groups, where he trains leaders to lead more effectively by improving their storytelling abilities. Here, he teaches real skills—not theory—that corporate management can implement immediately. In executive-level workshops that identify what already works for the company and what needs fixing, participants are shocked to see dramatic improvement in their public-speaking and leadership abilities.
Now Sean has applied his years of experience as a storyteller—and, not incidentally, father—to a project designed to help Dads convey valuable information to their own children. DaddyTeller: How to be a Hero to Your Kids and Teach Them What’s Really Important By Telling Them One Simple Story at a Time is a step-by-step e-book guide for teaching Dads to become storytellers for their kids.
As the father of four young adults, Sean knows this subject intimately. Based on the premise that any father can learn to tell his children stories that convey values and ethics to his children, DaddyTeller offers nine simple stories (eight plus a bonus) aimed to turn story time into a meaningful and loving experience for both parent and child.
Beyond the book, Sean provides ample support, not just for Dads but for anyone who wants to learn to tell a story with impact. His video clips and audio files are abundant. Watching him perform is inspiring, and even if all you do is watch, I guarantee you’ll tell your next story with just a touch more panache.
Sean describes his own style as somewhere between “in your life and in your face,” depending on his audience, and he has ample opportunity to adjust his approach. In addition to his work with teenagers, he is an expert presenter for corporations, teachers’ groups, colleges and universities, nonprofits, and faith-based organizations. His expertise includes communication and presentation skills, group dynamics, arts marketing, theatrical training, ministry management, and entrepreneurial development, to name but a few.
As a storyteller, he travels to where the need is, performing in schools and libraries, nonprofit groups, businesses and corporations, festivals, and churches—anywhere people will gather round the yarn-spinner. Using myths and legends, fables, sacred stories, and observations about life, Sean chooses stories that speak to the specific needs of each group
A group with needs was, in fact, exactly where Sean Buvala got his start 23 years ago, in a classroom of wild eighth graders on a very wild day. Desperate, he called out over the din, “Once upon a time….”
A hush settled over the room.
“I grabbed the first kid,” he says. “I led him to the front of the classroom and said, ‘Once upon a time, there was a man who had two sons….’”
He grabbed the next two boys and placed them next to the first one, where they became the sons. In turn, he brought each child up to be cast as an actor in the story. And the rest is, well, history.
— by Durga Walker