Stories for Innovation

Course Overview

Stories for Innovation is at the heart of what Peter de Kuster is known for—human-centered storytelling. This course, an in-depth focus on the first phase of business storytelling, will ground you in the needs of the people you’re creating for. In this course, you’ll develop empathy for your customers and surface insights for creating products and services they want and need. You’ll gain practical business story telling skills and mindsets that will help you turn your customer needs into human-centered solutions.

Join the course to push your learning, share and receive feedback and resources, and develop long-term connections.

Introduction Learn about our storytelling approach to innovation, explore the power of stories, and choose your project challenge.
  • An overview of the 5 skills you’ll be exploring in the course: Observing, Learning from Extremes, Interviewing, Immersive Empathy, and Sharing Insights.
  • Discussion: Why is it important to see the world through different story lenses?
  • Activity: Choose the challenge that you’ll explore during the course.
Question Discover how to question others for their story and unlock your curiosity.
  • Practice how to listen in order to understand what people value and care about.
  • Discussion: What helps you get into a curious and non-judgmental mindset?
  • Activity: Get out in the world and start observing your target audience and their behaviors.
Learn from Extremes Learn why it’s important to look at extremes, and how to go about identifying extreme people to interview and observe.
  • Understand how learning from extreme perspectives can stretch your thinking so that you can get beyond your assumptions and get to bold, new ideas.
  • Discussion: Tell us about a time you stretched your thinking beyond your comfort zone. How did it make you feel and what did you learn from this unfamiliar context?
  • Activity: Identify five to eight extreme people and behaviors to help you see new angles of your project challenge.
Interview Learn how to conduct a great interview so you can get deeper, more honest answers that inspire great insights.
  • Learn activities and tools for asking the right kinds of questions and setting the stage.
  • Discussion: Why is it important to be in tune with your presence when interviewing? How might you enhance your own self-awareness as an interviewer?
  • Activity: Plan and conduct an interview. How might you use the tips you’ve learned to get to deeper, more honest answers?
Immersive Empathy Create immersive stories that get you beyond intellectual understanding to a more visceral sense of another’s perspective.
  • Get beyond your assumptions by putting yourself in the shoes of the people you’re creating for.
  • Discussion: What does empathy mean to you? Can you think back to a time in your personal or professional life when you developed empathy for someone else’s story?
  • Activity: Create and conduct an empathy story to better understand a different perspective.
Share Stories Share compelling, quality stories that will inspire and motivate others to innovate.
  • Take what you’ve learned in the previous lessons and turn it into compelling stories to share with others.
  • Discussion: What were the themes you arrived at from connecting your individual data points in meaningful ways?
  • Activity: Capture, connect, and craft your final project stories (ideally with a group).

About Peter de Kuster

Peter de Kuster is the founder of Passie Pensioneert Nooit and The Heroine’s Journey & Hero’s Journey project,  a storytelling firm which helps creative professionals to create careers and lives based on whatever story is most integral to their lifes and careers (values, traits, skills and experiences). Peter’s approach combines in-depth storytelling and marketing expertise, and for over 20 years clients have found it effective with a wide range of creative business issues.


Peter is writer of the series The Heroine’s Journey and Hero’s Journey books, he has an MBA in Marketing,  MBA in Financial Economics and graduated at university in Sociology and Communication Sciences.

Why Take Stories for Innovation

Better understand the people you’re creating for and what deeply matters to them. Empathy helps unlock new perspectives, which is essential when coming up with creative ideas and solutions. Stories for Innovation will help you understand viscerally and emotionally—not just intellectually—what people want and need through the practice of immersive empathy. In this course, you’ll learn a different way of thinking, an approach you can use again and again to build more human-centered products, services, and organizations.

This Course Will Help You

  • Apply the skills and mindsets of the human-centered storytelling process to create products and services people want and need.
  • Use observation and learning from extremes to get beyond your assumptions.
  • Plan and conduct great customer interviews, so you can get to deeper, more honest answers.
  • Use empathy to better understand the needs and motivations of the people you’re serving.
  • Turn your raw learnings into shareable stories.

Practical Info

The price of this one day storytelling masterclass is Euro 395 excluding VAT for one person.

The masterclass is 3 september 2019 at Usine Witte Dame Eindhoven.

You can reach Peter for questions about the program by mailing him at 


09.40    Tea & Coffee on arrival

10.00     Morning Session

13.00     Lunch Break

14.00     Afternoon Session

18.00     Drinks