Updated: Oct 22, 2019
As Master of Ceremonies (MC) at an event, you have an important role to play. You control the timing and sequence of events, and ensure the program goes ahead without a hitch. Without an MC, the event has no structure or flow, and no entertainment!
Hosting an event can be a daunting task. Some people are at ease in the spotlight and appear born for the role. For others, a few butterflies are normal - especially the first time.
But a little preparation can make all the difference. Here are some expert tips to help you host your next event - and enjoy the excitement a whole lot more!
1. Prepare an introduction
Crafting a captivating story to draw your audience in is a great way to launch yourself as an MC. Introduce yourself, have your narrative prepared by doing some research on the brand or company that you are representing, have a relaxed mindset and stay focused on the task at hand. You can also prepare by familiarising yourself with the run sheet as this carries the structure and content of the event.
2. Stay humble
As an MC, you are there to keep things moving and to make sure that the speakers, guests and hosts are well informed and celebrated. Being the MC does mean you take centre stage, however always remember to stay humble and keep the focus on the room and the runsheet.
3. Set the tone for the event
A confident energy with positive reinforcement throughout your speech will set the tone. Find the happy medium between a serious, professional approach and a high-energy vibe.
4. Maintain timeframes
An award-winner making a speech may go on too long or swerve off topic, which will hijack the momentum of your event. Speakers are well briefed about their time on stage and should know their time limit. An MC needs to stay close to the lectern or microphone, keep time and ensure people’s presentations are brief and to the allocated time.
5. The transition between speakers
Giving a short recap of the previous speech and presentation or complimenting the speaker is a clever way to move from one presentation to the next. Then, set up the next speaker with a short introduction which is usually in the runsheet.
6. Prepare to improvise
Not everything goes to plan, so be prepared for unforeseen circumstances, such as a speaker not showing up or an incident in the audience. The key is to stick as closely as possible to the agenda and keep things moving forward - no matter what happens.
7. Microphone etiquette
It’s important to hold the microphone about five centimetres from your mouth. Having the microphone too close will muffle everything but holding it too far away will thin your words out. Your audio technician will control the sound levels, but there’s only so much they can do if you're not handling the microphone properly.
8. Have a closing speech prepared
Just like the opening narrative, you need to tie your MC-ing together with a closing story or call to action at the end. Recap the highlights of the evening and challenge the audience for feedback. A closing statement is a great way to remind people how good your event was!
When you practice your opening and closing speeches, imagine yourself sitting in the audience listening to what was just said. If it’s not great, refine your content until you have something that you love and that will keep the audience hanging on your every word.
If you’re holding a corporate event and need a fabulous MC to host it, contact us today on firstname.lastname@example.org and let us recommend the right MC for your next conference, AGM, Meeting, Gala Dinner and event.