What does it take to attract, to bewitch, to delight & 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 corpo-
rate crowd & business organization that is very diverse in terms of structure, resources, needs & 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 & gadgets plus participant/s standing & leaving a room.
In addition, negative body language signals including jittery movements, talking to one another, blank faces, the
no-reaction look, crossed arms, & 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 micro-
phone within the first five to ten minutes. We can do several things such as make the audience stand & 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 & examples, to working in harmony with their respective team mates & 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” & 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 & knowledge imparted, positive feedback received & most of all, real hope for an improved life brought
about by enhanced Appearance, Behavior & Communication.