Sunday, October 21, 2012

Introducing a Speaker: The Five Ingredients of a High Impact and Productive Speaker Introduction, One that Instantly Builds Anticipation and Enthusiasm in the Audience

  • Length: not too long, because of the risk of the introduction becoming flat and soporific, thus losing audience interest; not too short (such as a mere 2 or 3 sentences) because in all likelihood it will then be superficial and perfunctory.

  • Delivery: Best for the introducer to present his or her piece with passion and enthusiasm because such show of emotion is often infectious and will help rouse and galvanize the audience.

  • Drama; attention-getting: An introduction is like a mini-speech, and so, just as is highly desirable for any speech, the opening words of an introduction should be attention-getting; the speaker should attempt to inject a bit of drama to make the audience sit up instantly.

  • Personalizing / Humanizing the speaker; endearing him or her to the audience: Say something personal (and, if possible, humorous) about the speaker so that the audience can “connect” with the speaker even before he or she ascends to the lectern.

  • Compelling everyone in the audience to divorce their minds of any distractions and focus sharply on the presentation: The introducer must say at least a couple of well-formulated sentences (or, at the minimum, give a hint) on why it is in the audience’s self-interest to listen intently to the upcoming speech. This will compel everyone to instantly disconnect their brains to the electronic devices in their possession and to any other distractions in the room.

A speaker introduction sample that embodies the above five ingredients: By Tuesday night of this week, I will post an actual introduction I wrote a few days ago for one of my public speaking coaching clients who is to deliver a keynote later this week to an audience comprising over a thousand people.

© Copyright 2012  V. J. Singal

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