So how do I build rapport when I open my presentation?

In order to achieve a high level of inclusion, the best way to begin is to use what I refer to as ‘inclusive statements’.

Inclusive statements are those that audience members will understand and relate to. There are two types of inclusive statements:

  1. Universals
  2. Truisms.

Universals are statements that everyone will understand and relate to. For example:

  1. ‘Many people would like to be more successful.’
  2. ‘Most of us would like to have more money to spend on things we enjoy.’
  3. ‘Many of us would like to have more of the things we want in life.’

Truisms are statements that are true just for this particular audience, at this time, in this particular forum: For example:

  1. ‘Many of you are good at setting and achieving your goals.’
  2. Many of you are excited about the opportunity of unlocking your full potential.’

Make sure you get right into your audience’s shoes and come up with the best, most insightful opening statements that you can, so that you maximise your rapport with the audience. When you are writing your universals and truisms, it’s a good idea to ask yourself: ‘What does my audience know to be true?’ Once you have a few answers, make sure that they all link to your subject and flow naturally and seamlessly from one statement to the next.