According to standup comic Clayton Fletcher, most definitely. And why not? Comedy humanizes us, let’s our audience (or prospective client in this case) know that we are more than just our ideas. Comedy establishes a connection.
Clayton was one of the general session presenters at this year’s Counselors Academy. I have to admit I really wasn’t sure how this session was going to be. After all, it was at 8:30 a.m. on Sunday morning. And after hanging with my pals in the hospitality suite the night before, I figured I could probably just sleep in.
Clayton took us through the various types of comedy standards – things like the value of a good punch line, how to setup a joke, how to use body language to convey a point. All the time sharing with us how we can use these techniques as part of our new business presentations.
Certainly, you have to learn to read your audience. You need to know what and when it is appropriate to add in some comic relief, but in Clayton’s opinion, you really have nothing to lose by creating a more comfortable atmosphere. Not only comfortable for you as the presenter but certainly for the people we are pitching.
And he was so convincing in his delivery that he even managed to get some of the attendees up to the front of the room to try out their comedy skills. And you know what? They were awesome.
We left the session with some great ideas and plenty of good laughs. I’m glad I decided to drag myself there.