Introduce Your Guest Speaker with Bravado
When you are asked to introduce a guest speaker, grab the opportunity because it’s a chance to practice your speaking skills and connect with the speaker.
An introduction is a mini speech. Remember you are not the star so don’t try to steal the stage from the guest speaker. The audience didn’t show up to listen to your introduction so don’t try to be the entertainment. The speaker will appreciate a warm and inviting introduction.
- Try to be funny
- Wing it
- Be afraid of reading the introduction
- Read a long bio
- Take more than 60 seconds
- Learn how to say the speaker’s name
- Ask for an introduction, not a bio and know the difference
- If you receive a bio, highlight the 3, 4 or 5 most relevant points
- Practice delivering the introduction, so you feel comfortable
- Meet and chat with the speaker so you are both aware of the logistics
Purpose of the Speaker Introduction
There are two purposes to the introduction:
- Enhance the anticipation of the audience for the speaker’s message
- Make the speaker feel welcomed
As the introducer. you’re not there to entertain or waste time. A good introduction is not memorable. It simply feels good in the moment.
After the introduction. both the audience and the speaker are ready for each other.
In an in-person event, you might end your introduction with, “please join me in welcoming our guest speaker, Bruce Wayne!” And you look at the speaker while starting the applause.
That doesn’t work in a virtual environment. Instead, you end with. “I now present to you, Bruce Wayne!”
The introduction is not about you yet it’s an opportunity to demonstrate your presentation skills. It’s like making an introduction at networking event. You are bringing two parties together. You introduce them and walk away as they engage in an enthusiastic conversation.