In order for a presentation to be effective, the presenter must be seen as a trusted mentor. Without this trust, you run the risk of disengagement or lack of audience buy in. While building trust is important, it is very difficult, especially in a time when there is a high level of mistrust and lack of connection.
Knowing how important trust is to a presenter, you may be asking yourself: How can I build it? With that in mind, we have put together 3 tips to becoming a trusted mentor with every audience.
The first key to building trust is connecting with your audience on a personal level. Using stories about your family or photos to open and introduce yourself will help humanize you to the audience and connect on a deeper level. You can also build rapport by taking time to speak with your audience members prior to your presentation. Walk around the room, get to know some people, and intentionally learn their names. This helps the audience see you as a person and not as a talking head when it comes time to deliver your content.
One way to break down the trust between you and your audience is by faking it. People can spot inauthenticity from a mile away, and as a presenter it can be easy to project a persona rather than the real you. This allows you to self-protect and keep a distance between and your audience. While this distance may feel comfortable to you, it becomes a barrier to trust for those engaging with your content. Be yourself – we promise: you’re the best at it.
Credibility is key to becoming known as a trusted mentor. Building credibility comes when you can establish yourself as the expert in the field. Once deemed an expert, your audience will begin to see you as their mentor and someone they should listen to. Use facts and research to build credibility and support this data with real-life stories to bring it all to life. Beware – credibility can be quickly lost if you are wrong on your data or don’t support a story with facts. So be sure to pay attention and make those moments count.
The title of trusted mentor is one every presenter should strive for. It ensures your audience sees you as the expert and helps you not just connect on presentation day, but also engage long term. Your content may be great, but trust is what will hold it all together. Be sure to execute these three tips in your next presentation, and watch as your audience comes alive.
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