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Exploring the power of storytelling with Lucy Lill

22 Feb 2024

Discover how Lucy Lill enriched Tyler Grange’s workplace culture through the art of narrative.

From enhancing team cohesion to fostering deeper connections, we explore Lucy’s impactful storytelling workshop. In turn, see how storytelling can enrich your work life, making every day more meaningful. What stories are waiting to be told in your professional journey? 

Who is Lucy Lill?

Lucy is a performance storyteller based in London. “I dive into old tales like myths and fairy tales, pick them apart and stitch them back together for my shows,” she says. “It’s not acting. Although I’m performing, I’m still being me and the story is happening in the audience’s heads.” 
Recently, Lucy has expanded her expertise to organisations. She’s helped charities make their stakeholder presentations better. With animators at St Martin’s University of London, she’s shared storytelling techniques to help them develop their creative ideas. Over at GB Cycling, Lucy introduced the team to different ways of using stories in their work, making their conversations more meaningful and engaging. 
“I work to help unpack how narrative works so that people can use it to help create a positive team culture. We’re all using story all the time, I just encourage people to see how powerful it is,” she explains.

Making new connections

Clare Murphy is a fellow performance storyteller. She recently joined The Bouncebackability Podcast with Simon Ursell, Chairman of Tyler Grange, and Russell ‘Rusty’ Earnshaw, a rugby union coach. 
Clare spoke about how stories can be transformational when used in non-performance settings. Simon was inspired and curious about exploring storytelling’s impact within Tyler Grange. Clare put Simon in touch with Lucy, which led to a fantastic storytelling workshop.

A tool for stronger workplace bonds

There wasn’t a specific goal for the storytelling workshop as Lucy explains: “Simon was very open-minded about it. He was intrigued by the idea and keen to see how storytelling could be integrated into Tyler Grange’s culture. There’s a real ‘magpie mindset’ at the company—always eager to pick up new ideas from different fields and see how they can benefit their work.” 
The workshop attracted a diverse group from Tyler Grange, including senior leadership and Tribe members from across the country. “It was a microcosm of the entire organisation, coming together to explore the art of storytelling. This really enriched the experience,” Lucy observes. 
Initiating the workshop with her storytelling, Lucy guided the team through exercises and reflective discussions. “The aim was to illuminate the presence and value of storytelling in our professional lives, urging everyone to recognise its application in enhancing workplace communication and fostering deeper connections,” she adds.

Bridging distances and differences

Lucy’s workshop helped bridge the gap within our wide-ranging team. “With people spread out and specialising in different areas, it’s easy to stick to your circle. Sharing stories from their work life helped them step outside that, understanding and connecting with colleagues in a new way,” she describes. 
“The highlight was guiding everyone to share personal stories from their work lives, encouraging them to think about their narratives and how to present them. Sharing these stories forged a genuine sense of connection. It became evident how the values of the organisation were shared, despite the different roles everyone plays within it,” she reflects. 

Exposing the richness of every individual’s experience

Inviting someone like Lucy into an organisation can reveal the complex layers of individual and collective experiences. “Organisations often focus on their goals and the mechanics of operations, sometimes overlooking the individual stories that make up the whole. The workshop at Tyler Grange helped to highlight the unique contributions of each person, enriching their understanding of the entire organisation and helping to build a shared story that everyone could buy into,” she says. 
She emphasises how storytelling can significantly improve team cohesion and empathy, leading to a more coherent and connected organisation. “Hearing each other’s stories not only brings us closer but also enhances our empathy towards one another. There’s science behind it—listening to stories triggers oxytocin, often called the ‘happiness hormone,’ which deepens our understanding of others’ perspectives within the organisation.”

Tyler Grange through Lucy’s eyes

Reflecting on the workshop’s atmosphere, Lucy recalls, “The engagement and curiosity from everyone were palpable. It’s incredibly rare to find a company that radiates such connection and joy.” 
She connects this to how much Tyler Grange cares about its people. “They’ve really understood how supporting their team strengthens the entire organisation.” 
Lucy’s experience delivering the workshop left her inspired. “Tyler Grange embodies the kind of organisation I admire—one that’s open, curious and committed to ethical business practices.” 
“You can feel the synchronicity there; their commitment is met with equal dedication from the team,” she continues. What really struck her was our proactive approach to employee health, like our fatigue team initiative. “I mentioned their fatigue team to a friend at the NHS, who was so impressed she reached out to learn more.”

We're all natural storytellers

Lucy reminded us that storytelling is in our nature, flowing as naturally as our breath. She emphasises, “We might not all be performers, but we are all storytellers and stories can help people discover the genuine significance in our work, which is crucial because work fills a large part of our lives. Connecting with our work is essential; we all want to live meaningful lives.” 
Huge thanks to Lucy for running such an insightful workshop at Tyler Grange. Her expertise sparked a newfound appreciation for the narratives that shape our daily work life.  
Moving forward, we’re inspired to integrate storytelling into our regular interactions and projects, recognising its power to enhance understanding, empathy and collaboration.  
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