Do you ever get nervous before a big presentation? Having a strong plan for your Positive Contact will go a long way to alleviate your pre-presentation nerves and help ensure a strong start to your program. You may recall from Carew's Dimensions of Professional Selling® sales training program, Positive Contact is used at the outset of any customer engagement, and is particularly relevant to initiate the Exploratory Process and the Presentation Process. In any customer engagement, Positive Contact is an effective means to:

  • Create a personal connection with the customer
  • Build rapport
  • Set the stage for the conversation
  • Establish expectations for the session

Certainly, all of the above benefits apply in a group presentation, but a thoughtfully planned and proven Positive Contact offers additional advantages when kicking off a presentation to a group:

  • Increases presenter's confidence
  • Reduces nervousness surrounding "how" you will start your presentation
  • Communicates from the start that attendees are not in for a boring, one-sided, death-by-PowerPoint sales presentation
  • Provides the perfect platform to share your personality with the entire group

The key to realizing the full benefits of Positive Contact when presenting to a group is investing the time and thought to develop several really strong versions of your unique Positive Contact. Your Positive Contact should have a personal dimension to it without being too personal. It should always be positive and light and be an authentic reflection of you. Often, humor is used to set an upbeat tone, or a question is posed to engage attendees in a two-way dialog from the start.

The best speakers are the ones who carefully choose every word, practice until it is second nature, and then present the content in a relaxed and natural manner that looks "off the cuff." We should give the same careful attention to our Positive Contact as we do to the core content of our program to boost our own confidence and ensure a strong start to every presentation.