The Introductory Speech
Effective Public Speaking Index
The objective of The Introductory Speech is, apart from letting the audience know the relevance of the person being introduced, to build a bridge between the guest and the audience. You will be given a resume of the person being introduced well in advance. If not, ask the concerned person for the resume. If he does not have it, there is no harm in asking the guest himself to give you a copy. Underline all the points you think are relevant for your audience. Just as you would in a prepared speech, prepare a 5x3 card of the main points and deliver as you would do with a prepared speech.
Some things to remember :
1. However important the speaker, you will not take more than 2 minutes to introduce.
2. It is an unpardonable sin to READ the bio data of the guest. Don't ever do it.
3. The salutation in the beginning of your speech is to be abbreviated, probably like this.
4. Keep the name of the introducee in suspense till the end of your speech
• Mr President /Mr Chairman, Ladies and Gentlemen.
5. Your speech should highlight the achievements of the speaker relevant to his assignments with you. For e.g. When a trainer is doing a program, give his credentials as a trainer. He might also be a successful businessman. Unless his training is business related, you need not give too many details about his business
6. It is a good idea to give some details about his personal background. Avoid the word happily when you talk about his marriage.
7. Announce his current assignment in a slightly louder tone at the end of the speech and then his name, even more loudly.
May I present to you, ladies and Gentlemen, the Managing Director of Reliance, Mr Mukesh Ambani?
8. When a person is well known to the audience, spend some time with him before the meeting. Highlight a few things that the audience may not know, likes hobbies, his children's achievements.
9. Even when someone is well known, it is incorrect to say our guest is so well known, he needs no introduction. But I have the task and so for formality's sake ...
Your job is to introduce not pass comments. In this case as said before, concentrate or little known aspects of the guest's personality.
10. Avoid the clichés : None other than and No one else but.
If a speaker is being invited to speak on a particular subject, your introductory speech should loosely answer the following:
• Why this subject?
• Why this subject for this audience?
• Why this subject for this audience at this time?
• Why this speaker for this audience for this subject at this time?
The Introductory Speech should have all these aspects.
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