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Why we must all bow to the audience

I was hosting a live studio debate for a financial services client this afternoon on the complex subject of RDR (Retail Distribution Review) and the implications and opportunities for IFAs once it comes into force next year. It’s going to mean a significant change in the way IFAs communicate with their clients and in the messages they deliver. One of the key points which came out of the debate was that before they can communicate effectively, the IFAs are going to have to listen to their clients.

And only yesterday, in a public speaking training session for an IT services company, a key concern for the two senior executives was how to present material which is relevant and engaging to the audience. Simple. Before you start composing your presentation, think long and hard about who the audience is, what they know, what you want them to do and feel. Every piece of communication, whether it’s a best man’s speech or a pitch to potential new clients, should begin with a ‘bow’ to the audience.

And then you can wait for the applause.