A few weeks ago, I had the pleasure of working with a group of doctors presenting complex, detailed information to their colleagues. The experience reminded me of some key principles that I'd love to share with you.
First Impressions Matter
As always, I set up my room and welcomed each person individually as they walked in. The goal? Make eye contact and flash a big smile. It's the first step in building trust.
Room Setup & Engagement
Since I can't always arrange the room to my liking, I have a workaround: I invite everyone to move up front. I let them know the session will be interactive and they'll get more out of it if we're not so spread out. The result? A more engaged audience.
The Power of Community Learning
I do this because it not only helps me engage more effectively as a facilitator but there's also a general consensus in educational psychology that people learn better in a community setting. So why not make the most of it?
Trust is Key
This is crucial because, to get the best from my clients in a group setting, trust is key. People need to feel comfortable enough to practice in front of each other. Depending on the room's vibe, I might introduce an exercise to encourage conversation and deepen that trust.
A Final Note for Facilitators
If you're a facilitator or giving a presentation, consider how you're setting up your room for success and how you'll start building trust from the get-go. Time is often limited, so those first 10-15 minutes to build rapport can make or break the learning experience.
Thank you for reading, and here's to more engaging and trust-filled presentations! The first moments matter ✨