Top ten tips on being a good master of ceremony

As a master of ceremony, it is your job to keep the audience interested, energised and to keep the event moving smoothly. However, being a master of ceremony is not as easy as it sounds. It is common in front of an audience to become incredibly nervous and shy no matter how confident you may normally be. Public speaking of any kind is not easy even if it is to your family, friends or colleagues. Whether it is an audience of just a handful of people or an audience of hundreds, there are ways to calm your nerves and focus on being a successful master of ceremonies. Below we is this me writing or someone on my behalf? Why we have put together ten tips to help you to be the best master of ceremony you can be.

  1. Know your audience and speakers – If you are going to be able to hold the audiences interest then you need to do your research on each of the speakers, what they are discussing and who the audience are. Doing this will help you to identify with the audience and understand the setting you need to create.
  2. Warming the audience – As a master of ceremonies it is your job to warm the audience and prepare them for the speakers. To do this you will need to have completed the first tip of knowing your audience and speakers. You need to warm the audience to you and set the atmosphere and prepare the audience for the event.
  3. Reiterate key points – After each speaker, it is a good idea to pick up any key points they may have made and reiterate them with the audience. This may help you to lead into introducing the next speaker and also to keep the audience engaged and interested.
  4. Links – One key to being a successful master of ceremony is making sure that the event runs smoothly. Your introductions need to flow from one to another and it is a good idea to find positives within each presentation that you can relate to the audience with. Linking the end of each presentation with the beginning of the next will help everything to flow smoothly.
  5. Practicalities – As well as being on stage between speakers, you also need to take care of all the practicalities for each speaker. If the microphone stand needs to be adjusted, lighting lowered, visual videos or images set then it is your responsibility to ensure that all these things happen at the right time. You are not expected to necessarily complete these tasks yourself but you must have a system in place for ensuring they are done correctly and professionally.
  6. Timing – Always be aware of time. You need to know how long each speaker has and how long the event is running for. Do not get carried away with your own introductions. Keep things short and concise and make sure you keep to timings so that tings do not run on.
  7. Address each speaker – It is important and respectful as a master of ceremony to personally address each speaker both at the beginning and end of their speech. It is good practise to remain on the stage until the speaker has arrived and shake their hand before leaving the stage yourself. You should also do this at the end of the speech so that you are on the stage before the speaker leaves the stage. This ensures continuity on the stage and promotes the flow of the event.
  8. Memory – As a master of ceremonies you will be expected to speak from memory. Reading an introduction to a speaker makes it feel awkward, fake and staged. By speaking from memory, you will be able to engage better with your audience and it gives a far more professional appearance. This is not as easy as it sounds, especially when working with a celebrity or well known personality.
  9. Gauge the response – Whilst a speaker is on stage, it is important for you to listen to the speaker but also to gauge the audience’s reaction. If the speaker is a little dull or monotone then the audience could become quickly drained and uninterested. If this should occur, it is your job to get the audience back for the next speaker. Try using humour and fun to re-energise the audience and bring their interest back.
  10. Closing – Closing an event may seem insignificant compared to opening one. However, as a master of ceremony, you need to give 100 % and remain professional right up until the end. This is a chance to interact with the audience and discuss some of the points raised. You should applaud and thank each speaker personally as well as thanking all the people involved in the event and never forget to thank the audience for attending.

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