AICI Philippine Chapter Newsletter July 2015 issue
CAPTIVATING THE CORPORATE CROWD
By: Carolina D. Tan, AICI FLC
What does it take to attract, to bewitch, to delight and to fascinate our client? After all this is what “to captivate” them is all about: Handling a small, medium to extra large audience is no joke. How much more with the corporate crowd and business organization that is very diverse in terms of structure, resources, needs and people.
Taking this responsibility of handling the corporate audience is very different from one-on-one coaching or a group class. I’ve come to realize that regardless of talk time involved, whether just an hour, half a day, full eight-hour day, to several days in succession; it takes: preparation, keen observation, positive action, and love for the profession to sustain the magic from beginning to end. What distracts us speakers in this challenging area? To name a few examples, these include ringing cellphones and gadgets plus participants standing and leaving a room. In addition, negative body language signals including jittery movements, talking to one another, blank faces, the no-reaction look, crossed arms, and a passive audience who expects to just sit down and listen are distracting movements. So then, how do we involve our audience? Here are my personal tips worth sharing:
1) BREAK THE ICE. This is something that should happen simultaneously as the speaker is handed the microphone within the first five to ten minutes. We can do several things such as make the audience stand and stretch some muscles, to face to face introductions by adding an adjective to their nicknames which makes them laugh.
2) ENGAGE & INCLUDE. At the onset let participants know that it will be expected of them to take an active involvement from answering questions in their workbooks & sharing orally, taking voluntary actions for the exercises and examples, to working in harmony with their respective team mates and various groups. There should be no dull moment.
3) CHALLENGE. Absolutely no spoon-feeding here. After the technical inputs, this is where skills are put to the test. Here we clearly, see how they do the execution that will make or break them in their professional lives.
4) COMMIT. What is their personal vision? What motivates them? Get your audience to see, say “yes” and be willing to change for the better. Remember this is a process that takes time, for some it is an easy flow but for others it may take longer. However, rest assured that they will get there. At the end of the day, what gives us joy are the pure smiles on our participants’ faces, their appreciation for the learning and knowledge imparted, positive feedback received and most of all, real hope for an improved life brought about by enhanced Appearance, Behavior & Communication.
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AICI Philippine Chapter Jul 2015