Excellence in “sticky” presentations–Nail the Opening

“Excellence in presenting is not just informing or sharing technical knowledge. One must make a unique and emotional connection that rises above techniques or delivery style so that audience expectations are met and exceed” Mark W. Hardwick, Ph.D.

Your first task as a presenter is to set a positive and enthusiastic tone for the meeting. To accomplish this task of rapport building you need to introduced every participant and agree on some “rules of the road” for interacting. Llike, saying their names before making a comment and putting their cell phones on mute etc. Next briefly highlight the purpose for the meeting. For example, say: “The goal of the meeting today is to share and problem solve “best practices” for the Transplant Team to positively impact the recovery of patients. This beginning process needs to be completed within 90 -12o seconds of starting the meeting. If you start too slow or with low energy you can lose participants from the get-go.

Next you need to review and agree to the Agenda making sure it meets the participants expectations and needs for learning. You need to take this opportunity to hook and get commitment from the participants that what is going to be discussed is relevant to their needs. Practice delivering the Agenda with clarity and conciseness. Don’t go into  minute detail because you run the risk of losing the audience. This review needs to be done in about 30-45 seconds to be effective. Before moving forward ask the listening audience for input and commitment to go forward with the body of your presentation. After this brief discussion summarize the Agenda by saying the following: Our agenda now includes these three key points: First, I will review the key process components for success in the Transplant Recover process, Second, we will review the roles of key personnel in the process and how each role is linked to the healing process.And finally we will have Mary introduce the Case we will discuss and analyze for more key learnings in Transplant process. Finally, we will share key take away points that can make a difference in how we add value to the process by finding better ways to  connect and care for our patients.

Now let’s start with one of the key points I would you to take away from this discussion: ( This is called the learning “hook” or attention grabber).

I recommend a power open-ended question such as, In what ways will the continuing pressure to cut the Transplant Coordinator’s time with the patient effect outcomes and patient satisfaction? Be sure in asking an opened question to start with what, how or why and then be quiet and wait for a response. Be brief and to the point in asking the question by avoid long-winded and detailed explanatory statements before asking question.  Or as an alternative attention ” grabber”  method you might present an interesting “factoid” to emphasize an important teaching point such as,  the NUMBER 18. I would put this alone on a slide with 60 point font. The 18 seconds is important because research shows that Dr.’s on average interrupt their patients before 18 seconds has past. It shows the need for Health Care providers need to be better listener’s. Listening, as we all know, is a key component of feeling accepted and understood by others which in turn determines a patient’s satisfaction and healing time.

In the next blog, we will tackle how to conduct and facilitate the rest of a “virtual” meeting. But remember if you capture the participants attention at the start of a meeting , odds are with you that the group will stay engaged for the rest of the discussion.


One thought on “Excellence in “sticky” presentations–Nail the Opening”

  1. Reblogged this on The Wick and commented:

    Recently I had a request about how to “open” a very important, so I thought you maybe others following thewick may have missed this post

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