How to Introduce a Guest Speaker (with Examples)

May 25, 2023

people sitting on gang chairs

Introducing a guest speaker is an important responsibility that sets the stage for their presentation and creates an atmosphere of anticipation. A well-crafted introduction not only provides essential information about the speaker but also captivates the audience and builds excitement. In this article, we will explore the art of how to introduce a guest speaker and how to craft a brilliant script for introducing a guest speaker.

From the best way to introduce a speaker to example speeches and tips for making a memorable impact, we will equip you with the tools to deliver introductions that engage, entertain, and leave a lasting impression.

What Is the Best Way to Introduce a Speaker?

Introducing a speaker effectively requires careful planning and consideration. Here are some key elements to keep in mind for how to introduce a guest speaker successfully.

1. Research and gather information.

Before introducing the guest speaker, conduct thorough research to gather relevant information about their background, achievements, and expertise. This will help you create an introduction that is both personalized and impactful.

2. Establish credibility.

Highlight the speaker’s credentials and accomplishments to establish their credibility in the eyes of the audience. Share their relevant experience, expertise, and any notable achievements that are relevant to the topic of their presentation.

3. Create a connection.

Find a compelling way to establish a connection between both the speaker and the audience. This can be through shared interests, experiences, or values. For example, if you’re introducing a guest speaker at your university who happens to be an alumnus of your school, make sure you draw attention to that in your introduction. Creating a relatable connection helps the audience connect with the speaker right from the start.

4. Build anticipation.

Engage the audience’s curiosity by giving a glimpse of what the speaker will later cover in their presentation. Tease key points, intriguing anecdotes, or unique perspectives that the audience can look forward to during the talk. This builds anticipation and captures attention for the following presentation.

5. Keep it concise and engaging.

Aim for a concise, but also interesting, introduction. Use short, direct sentences that convey information clearly. In addition, avoid lengthy biographies or unnecessary details that may lose the audience’s interest. Finally, craft your words carefully to maintain a lively and engaging tone.

How to Use AI to Practice Introducing a Guest Speaker

When it comes time to practice your guest speaker introduction speech, Yoodli , an AI-powered communication coach, becomes your invaluable practice partner. With Yoodli’s cutting-edge technology and generative AI , you can rehearse and refine your introduction in a virtual, judgement-free environment. Its personalized feedback helps you fine-tune your tone, pacing, and overall delivery, ensuring that you make a powerful impact when introducing a guest speaker.

A screenshot demonstrating how to use Yoodli to practice how to introduce a guest speaker.

Furthermore, Yoodli automatically generates a transcription of your speech, analyzing it for keywords. This means you can get a sense of how your audience might interpret your speech’s overall message and main points. With Yoodli’s assistance, you can gain confidence, practice your high income skills (like your storytelling skills, for example) and create an introduction that captivates as well as energizes the audience.

Examples of How to Introduce a Guest Speaker

To illustrate the power of a great guest speaker introduction, let’s take a look at an example of how to introduce a guest speaker.

Example of a general introduction for a guest speaker

Good morning, all! Today, we have the privilege of being in the presence of a true visionary and leader in the field of environmental sustainability. Our guest speaker has dedicated her career to finding innovative solutions for a greener and more sustainable future. [Speaker’s name], the CEO of [organization/company name], has successfully spearheaded numerous initiatives that have had a profound impact on our environment. Under her leadership, the company has revolutionized the way we approach sustainability challenges, pushing boundaries and inspiring change. With over two decades of experience in environmental engineering, [Speaker’s name] has been at the forefront of designing groundbreaking technologies and implementing sustainable practices in industries ranging from renewable energy to waste management. Her expertise has earned her international recognition and multiple prestigious awards. But it’s not just her professional achievements that make her special. [Speaker’s name] is a passionate advocate for educating the next generation on the importance of environmental stewardship. Her engaging speaking style and ability to connect with audiences of all backgrounds make her an inspiration to many. Today, [Speaker’s name] will be sharing her insights on how we can create a more sustainable future through innovation and collaboration. Get ready to be inspired, challenged, and empowered to take action. Please join me in giving a warm welcome to the exceptional [Speaker’s name]!

This example highlights the speaker’s credentials, builds a connection, creates anticipation, and sets the stage for an engaging and informative presentation.

Example of a personal anecdote for a guest speaker introduction

“Picture this: It was a sunny afternoon in the heart of our city, and I found myself walking through the bustling streets, surrounded by the sound of honking cars and the hum of conversation. Amidst the chaos, I stumbled upon a small park nestled between towering buildings — a hidden oasis of greenery and serenity.

As I entered the park, I noticed a group of children huddled around a captivating woman who stood in front of a majestic oak tree. It was none other than our esteemed guest speaker, [Speaker’s name]. She was engaging the children in a lively discussion about the wonders of nature and the importance of preserving our environment.

What struck me most was the way [Speaker’s name] effortlessly connected with these young minds, sparking their curiosity and inspiring them to take action. I watched as she shared stories of her own childhood adventures exploring forests, climbing trees, and discovering the beauty of our natural world.

In that moment, I realized the profound impact [Speaker’s name] had on these children: instilling a deep love and respect for the environment. Her passion was contagious, and it reminded me of the power we all possess to make a difference, no matter how small.

From that day forward, I became an avid follower of [Speaker’s name]’s work. Her commitment to environmental stewardship and her ability to connect with people from all walks of life is truly remarkable. Today, we have the incredible honor of welcoming her to this stage to share her insights and inspire us all to join the movement for a greener and more sustainable future.

Please finally join me in giving a warm welcome to the extraordinary [Speaker’s name]!”

What Do You Say First When Introducing a Guest Speaker?

The first few sentences of a guest speaker introduction are crucial in capturing the audience’s attention and setting the tone for the entire introduction. Here are some effective opening lines to consider adding to your script when introducing a guest speaking.

1. Engage listeners with a thought-provoking question.

Start with a thought-provoking question related to the speaker’s topic or expertise. This immediately grabs the audience’s attention and, what’s more, encourages them to actively participate in the introduction. For example: “Have you ever wondered how a single individual can make a significant impact on global environmental issues?”

2. Begin with a captivating anecdote or story.

Introduce the speaker by sharing a captivating anecdote or story that relates to their work or accomplishments. This narrative approach instantly draws the audience in and also builds an emotional connection.

3. Use a powerful quote.

Start with a powerful quote that encapsulates the essence of the speaker’s message or expertise. Quotes are attention-grabbing and can also convey a sense of authority and relevance. For example: “As Albert Einstein once said, ‘We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.'” You can find some powerful quotes from the best motivational speeches , too.

4. Make a bold statement.

Begin your script to introduce your guest speaker with a bold and impactful statement that immediately captures the audience’s attention. This statement should be concise yet intriguing, sparking curiosity as well as setting the stage for the speaker’s presentation. Attention getters are perfect for this. For example: “Today, you’re about to witness a groundbreaking approach to tackling one of the most pressing challenges of our time: climate change.”

Remember, the opening lines of your script to introduce a guest speaker are the gateway to engaging the audience and setting the stage for a memorable presentation. Choose an approach that aligns with the speaker’s personality as well as the event’s atmosphere, and don’t be afraid to be creative and captivating.

The Main Takeaway

Giving an introduction for a guest speaker is an art that requires careful planning, research, and an understanding of the audience’s expectations. By following the principles discussed in this article and using examples as inspiration, you can deliver introductions that engage, entertain, and leave a lasting impression. Remember, the goal is to set the stage for the speaker’s presentation and create a sense of excitement and anticipation.

So, go ahead, embrace the power of a well-crafted introduction, and make every guest speaker’s presence an unforgettable experience for your audience.

Start practicing with Yoodli.

Getting better at speaking is getting easier. Record or upload a speech and let our AI Speech Coach analyze your speaking and give you feedback.

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How to Write and Deliver an Engaging Guest Speaker Introduction

Last Updated: April 3, 2023 Fact Checked

Sample Speeches

Writing the introduction, delivering the speech, expert q&a.

This article was co-authored by Deb DiSandro and by wikiHow staff writer, Ali Garbacz, B.A. . Deb DiSandro is the Owner of Speak Up On Purpose, an organization dedicated to improving and teaching public speaking. Deb has over 30 years of experience as a national speaker and has presented at the Erma Bombeck Writer’s Conference and the National Society of Newspaper Columnists. She was awarded the National Speakers Association Member of the Year 2007 and has been published in Writer's Digest, Daily Herald, Women's Day, and Better Homes & Gardens. There are 8 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. This article has been fact-checked, ensuring the accuracy of any cited facts and confirming the authority of its sources. This article has been viewed 1,193,834 times.

Introducing a guest speaker is quite an honor. As the introducer, you get the audience excited about the talk they’re about to hear and play a crucial role in connecting the speaker to their audience on a more human level. Writing the perfect introduction speech requires some research and rehearsal on your part, but rest assured that you’ll be left with a speech that’ll leave your audience wanting more. Keep reading for our complete guide to writing the best introduction speech. Also, take a look at the samples we’ve included to get help you get started.

Things You Should Know

  • Establish the guest speaker’s credibility by mentioning notable achievements and experiences that relate to the topic of their speech.
  • Share a quick anecdote or surprising fact about the guest speaker to paint a picture of their personality and character.
  • Get the audience excited for the upcoming presentation with a short sentence stating what the guest speaker will be talking about.
  • Wait until the very end to introduce the guest speaker by their full name and title.

how to give a introduction speech for a guest speaker

Researching the Speaker

Step 1 Ask the speaker what they’d like you to say.

  • When the speaker provides an introduction for you, use it. Read it over a few times and don’t hesitate to ask them for any clarification if you need it.

Step 2 Find out the speaker’s topic and who their audience is.

  • For example, if the speech is about encouraging young girls to learn computer programming, don’t spend time explaining how the speaker can teach these skills to adults.
  • Additionally, if the audience is mostly people who work in the education field rather than computer programming, avoid using a lot of jargon specific to computer programming so the audience can follow along better.

Step 3 Gather biographical information about the speaker.

  • Another method is to ask the speaker for their resume. Use this to pick out their most notable achievements to help establish their credibility.
  • A good introduction goes beyond just reciting the speaker’s personal history. However, noting their most relevant and impressive achievements will help establish them as an authoritative figure to the audience.

Step 4 Avoid using sensitive or embarrassing information without approval.

  • Always get the speaker’s permission before using these details. If you need to use this information, have an explanation ready as to why it’s important to your introduction.

Step 5 Find other speeches the speaker has given.

  • Be careful if you’re using pieces from another speech since it is copyrighted material and can’t be used without the speaker’s permission. Talk directly to the speaker about using these portions, or rephrase the section in your own words.

Step 6 Include a surprising detail if it works in your intro.

  • “Many don’t know that John Doe originally went to school for law, but ended up choosing psychology instead. Just like many of you, he didn’t have much of an idea of where his life would take him. Little did he know that his legal studies would actually help him to become one of the most renowned therapists we know today.”

Step 7 Master pronouncing the speaker’s name.

  • Avoid using overly casual language to refer to the speaker, such as “guy,” “girl,” or “kid.” Instead, use “person,” “woman,” or “man.”

Step 1 Keep the introduction under 1 minute.

  • “Jane’s passion for creative writing goes back to her high school days where she began the draft for her very first novel at the age of 15. By the time she was entering her sophomore year of college at 19 years old, she had already published her first book.”
  • “John has received recognition and praise from some of the largest Fortune 500 companies for his dedication to creating curriculums to help strengthen teamwork in the workplace. He’s received multiple awards for his work and has even gone on to write a book sharing his unique insights and perspective.”

Step 3 Tell the audience what they’ll be learning from the speaker.

  • “Jane will tell you exactly how you can manifest every single one of your goals by making just five simple changes in your daily life.”
  • “John is here today to share the secret to maximizing your savings so you can live freely without ever having to worry about finances again.”

Step 4 Include a short personal anecdote if you have one.

  • “John and I met a few years back and immediately bonded over the struggle of maintaining a healthy work-life balance. I’m sure many of us can relate to this.”
  • “Jane’s book on navigating childcare in our current economy struck me at a very deep level. I’ve never read such relatable and honest words, and her work has given me comfort and reassurance during these unpredictable times.”

Step 5 Focus more on the speaker’s credibility rather than humor.

  • For example, you might say, “John Smith’s story working in the lumber industry inspired me to go out and build a cabinet. Unsurprisingly, it fell apart within five minutes of being built. I went back to him, and he was sure to reassure me that it’s a practice that requires much patience.”

Step 6 Introduce the speaker’s name at the end.

  • “Please join me in welcoming Dr. John Smith!”
  • “Here to discuss her newest book, “How to Live a Happier Life,” please give a warm welcome to Jane Doe.”
  • “Here to share his unique perspective on the current political climate, please welcome Professor John Doe.”

Step 7 Read your speech aloud to catch any errors.

  • Also, practice using a friendly and relaxed tone when you give your speech to avoid coming off as super stiff and nervous.
  • To overcome stage fright , recite the introduction while looking in a mirror. Once you feel comfortable, rehearse it in front of family and friends.

Step 2 Rehearse the introduction sparingly before going on stage.

  • For example, “Good evening. My name is Alex Brown, and I’m the organizer of this event.”
  • If everyone in the audience is familiar with you, there’s no need to introduce yourself.

Step 4 Show lots of enthusiasm while speaking.

  • Get the speaker’s approval of the introduction you’ve written. Thanks Helpful 0 Not Helpful 0
  • Forget about cliches such as “This person needs no introduction.” Instead, focus on making your introduction unique and descriptive. Thanks Helpful 0 Not Helpful 0
  • Ask the speaker to revise a provided introduction if you don’t feel that it’s right for the audience they’ll be presenting to. Thanks Helpful 0 Not Helpful 0

how to give a introduction speech for a guest speaker

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About This Article

Deb DiSandro

Before introducing your guest speaker, introduce yourself in case there are people in the audience who don't know you. Then talk about the speaker’s background and qualifications, and give the audience a high-level overview of what they might learn from the presentation. See if you can include a short, personal anecdote about the speaker, like "I read their book and really loved it," for example. Try to keep your introduction to less than 3 minutes, and finish it by welcoming your speaker and telling the audience their name. For more advice on introducing a guest speaker, including how to research them in advance, keep reading! Did this summary help you? Yes No

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  • How to write an introduction speech

Introduction speech for a guest speaker 

How to write a good introduction speech step by step

By:  Susan Dugdale  

If you've been asked to give the introduction speech for a guest speaker you're in the right place.

Everything you need to prepare it is here. Follow the steps and you'll have an introductory speech you'll be proud to deliver.

What you'll find on this page:

  • an overview of the purpose of an introduction speech for a guest speaker
  • the content you're expected to cover
  • an organizational pattern or template to follow  
  • an example introduction speech
  • 6 important tips to use to ensure your speech is a success

Graphic: a crowd of people and a label saying, "A primer on the gentle art of giving an introduction speech to a guest speaker."

The function of an introduction speech

Let's start with the purpose of the speech. When you understand what the speech is supposed to achieve you'll find it much easier to write.

Image background - audience with overlay of multiple speech bubbles eg. "I can't see from here". Title Text: One of the important roles of an introduction speech is to unite the audience.

The job of an introduction speech is to:

  • introduce your guest speaker,
  • give them a warm welcome, 
  • and create ready-and-motivated-to-listen anticipation in the audience.

Essentially you are the warm-up act. Your task is to focus and unite the audience members, to get them ready for what is to come.

Return to Top

To prepare your introduction speech you'll need:

  • the guest speaker's name and, if they have one, their title. For example; Judge, Sir, The Right Honorable... Do make sure you can say their name properly and easily! If you're in doubt get the correct pronunciation from your guest speaker and practice. Also ask if they have personal pronoun preferences. Eg: they/them, she/her, he/him... 
  • the guest speaker's biography or the credentials of the speaker Sometimes you'll be given what the guest speaker wants said about themselves. If that isn't provided select events, achievements and qualifications to support establishing him/her as an authority within the context of the occasion. And do check that your guest is happy with what you are preparing to say about them.
  • attention getters or a surprise to delight the audience, something that is not commonly known, and something revealing the personality or humanity of the person. 

How to organize your material

  • Build excitement or interest by adding one piece of information after another.
  • Make the speaker's name and their speech title, the climax and end of your speech.

To show you how it's done I've put together an...  

Introduction speech example

Let's put the speech in context to help you make sense of it.

The setting for this fictitious introduction speech is a conference for an organization called " Women in Leadership" . The audience are primarily women drawn together through an interest in leadership roles. 

Image background: crowd of people. Text overlay: Women in leadership - featuring key note speaker Rose Stephenson.

At the end of the speech, the speaker will lead the clapping as Rose Stephenson, the keynote speaker being introduced, takes center stage.

Now here's the introduction speech text.

Now here's the introduction speech text

" She's been a stalwart member of "Women in Leadership" for the last ten years. Over that time she's served in every office: secretary, treasurer, chairperson, chief fundraiser, education officer... to name just a few, and in some roles several times over.

Her passionate dedication to promoting public speaking as an important component of empowerment is inspiring. We estimate that she has personally mentored at least 100 new speakers and has set an extraordinary "yes, you can" example for many more. We see her as capable, confident and fluent: never at a loss for words. But what you probably don't know is that this women once stuttered, stammered and blushed.

Yes, she was often temporarily paralyzed, struck dumb by the mere thought of standing in front of an audience to speak.

How she got from awkward tongue tied silence to becoming an eloquent front line spokesperson is the story she will share with us tonight.

Ladies, without further ado, it's with great pleasure, I give you... Rose Stephenson on "Speaking To Lead!"

Say the speech out loud! Use it as a template!

Try saying it out loud to get the flow of it.

If you like it, use it as a model for the introduction speech you need to write.

6 tips to make your introduction speech successful

1. consider tone and language use.

Is what you've prepared appropriate for the occasion, audience and your guest speaker? Have you avoided using a string of clichés?

2. Check the length of your speech

Image background - crowd of people. Text: Keep it short and sweet.

Pertinent and pithy: a short speech is what you want. One to two minutes should be enough.

Test it out loud with a timer and trim if necessary.

My example speech is 171 words long. That will take approximately 1 minute 30 seconds to say depending on the speaker's rate of speech.

For more on: the number of words per minute in a speech . (This page has estimations for the number of words per minute spoken at a slow, medium and fast rate for speeches from 1 - 10 minutes long.)

3. Resist exaggerating or "puffing up" the speaker's achievements

First impressions count. You don't want to talk about your guest in a way that may embarrass and cause the audience to question their right to be there.

4. Always check your facts 

Beware the horror of getting your facts muddled and, if you wish to mention something that may be sensitive, ask permission before you announce it in front of an audience.

5. Remember you are not the main speaker, or the star of the show

Image background - crowd of people. Text: The speaker who introduces a guest or key note speaker must remember they are the support or warm up act.

You've done a good job when you cover just enough to make the coming speech eagerly anticipated. 

Please do not stray into telling the audience what the guest speaker's speech will cover in detail. That's terribly unfair on the speaker!

6. Rehearse your speech

Practice out loud until you are confidently fluent and able to convey the pleasure or enthusiasm the audience needs to get them in the right frame of mind.

For more: how to rehearse a speech well

For more: how to use your voice expressively

how to give a introduction speech for a guest speaker

Other related pages you may find useful:

  • How to give a self-introduction speech  (with an example of a brief speech to introduce yourself to fellow workshop participants)
  • How to write a welcome speech (with an example of a short welcome speech to open an event)

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How to Memorably Introduce Another Speaker

  • Deborah Grayson Riegel

What to say to get your audience’s attention.

As a professional speaker and facilitator for over 20 years, I’ve been introduced more than a thousand times, by countless meeting planners, conference organizers, and team leaders. Nevertheless, most of the introductions have fallen into one of four categories:

how to give a introduction speech for a guest speaker

  • Deborah Grayson Riegel is a professional speaker and facilitator, as well as a communication and presentation skills coach. She teaches leadership communication at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business and has taught for Wharton Business School, Columbia Business School’s Women in Leadership Program, and Peking University’s International MBA Program. She is the author of Overcoming Overthinking: 36 Ways to Tame Anxiety for Work, School, and Life and the best-selling Go To Help: 31 Strategies to Offer, Ask for, and Accept Help .

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Guest Speaker Introduction: How to Prepare, Write and Deliver

Introducing a guest speaker is more than just a routine task. It’s an important step for both the audience and the speaker. For the audience, a good introduction sets the stage, providing context and sparking interest in what the speaker has to say. It helps them understand why they should listen and what they can expect to learn.

For speakers, a thoughtful introduction acts as a warm-up, giving them credibility and a connection with the audience. It’s a way of showing respect and appreciation for their expertise and the effort they’ve put into their presentation.

I’ll be sharing some practical tips on how to introduce a guest speaker effectively. Whether it’s a formal event or a more casual setting, the right introduction can make a big difference in how the speaker’s message is received. So, let’s get started on learning how to make every introduction clear, concise, and engaging.

Introducing a guest speaker.

I once heard a guest speaker’s introduction that was longer than the speech. At first, I was amused because the person assigned to introduce the guest speaker was introduced for about 11 minutes.

He greeted everyone on the stage. He made some comments about the dignitaries who seemed to love the spotlight focused on them. The last time I saw something similar was at a conference of barangay officials.

At first, he read the curriculum vitae word for word. He mentioned every award and degree earned. It was evident that the speaker stayed in school longer than any of us.

Then, he shared stories of how he met the speaker, his first impressions, and the common values they hold. I counted that he mentioned “finally” seven times to signal that he was about to call the speaker.

“Without further ado, let us welcome my idol, the one and only, the honorable…”

It was not the longest introduction I have seen, but nine minutes is a long time to introduce a speaker.

When I was in college, I realized that the more insecure the speaker is, the longer the introduction becomes.

For example, the President of the Philippines is often introduced only with “Ladies and gentlemen, the President of the Republic of the Philippines.” The more dignified the person is, the shorter the introduction is.

I am not suggesting that introducing a speaker is not important. An excellent introduction by the guest speaker establishes rapport and trust, and it helps the audience understand why they must stay and listen.

You can write an excellent introduction to the guest speaker. It is easier than most people imagined. You can learn patterns and ways of delivery.

And I will share with you some tips that you will not find elsewhere as I am going to speak based on experience.

public speaker

Rehearse your speech.

Introducing a guest speaker is a speech too. It may last for a minute or two, but it will certainly impact the way how people receive the guest speaker and his message.

First, read it allowed. Listen to how you pronounce your words. Some words look good on paper. But some words are often misunderstood when spoken in a crowd.

You don’t want people to fix their minds on your mispronounced words.

Then, read it with facial expressions, gestures, eye contact, and vocal variety. Read it the way you want to deliver it.

If you want, you can memorize your speech. You may still bring your notes, but people will feel your enthusiasm when you make eye contact with them.

Practice it until it becomes second nature to you.

Perform well.

Your two-minute performance will help your speaker. You have written your speech. You have rehearsed it. All you need is to deliver.

In introducing a guest speaker, emcees typically make the segue or the transition from one segment to another. But in case they fail to do this, I come up with one sentence that will connect my segment to the ones that came before mine.

Here are my suggestions.

  • The emcee will introduce you. Do deep breathing. This helps you control your nerves.
  • Go to the designated area. Pause and make an eye-contact with the audience. You may also look at the direction of the guest speaker. Wherever you look the audience will follow.
  • Make a segue before you deliver your rehearsed introduction. Your purpose is to get the attention of your audience and connect with them immediately. Unless it is a protocol in your organization, I will advise against acknowledging all the dignitaries on the stage. It is likely that everyone has already been recognized.
  • Deliver your rehearsed guest speaker intro.
  • Pause. Look at the direction of the guest speaker, then call his name. This dramatic effect works most of the time.
  • When allowed, shake hands with the speaker before you leave the stage.

Do not waste the power of a guest speaker introduction to making your event remarkable. Prepare and write before your delivery.

When I was starting my keynote speaking career, I relied on organizations to deliver an excellent introduction. It seldom happens.

When you invite a guest speaker, show that your event really matters. Find out what the audience needs and how your guest speaker can provide the answer to those needs.

Your delivery of the guest speaker intro may make a big difference.

Examples of Guest Speaker Introductions

Often, the explanation is longer than the one being explained. This is true for the introduction of the guest speaker. In the academe, it is normal to read pages of introduction. Some people are just too happy to read even the seminars the speaker has participated in.

I remember a time when I was asked to judge a debate contest. But before the contest, some important people have to say something first.

The emcee introduced the introducer of the guest Guest speaker. He shared stories of their time together, and it took him 11 minutes to finally call the introducer of the guest speaker. Of course, the introducer of the guest speaker was so thankful for the wonderful introduction. He told another story of how he met the emcee. Then, after that, introduced the speaker — and he did all this for 17 minutes long. That’s because the speaker has many impressive credentials. Although none of his credentials is related to debate.

But the speaker did the best thing: he delivered for less than 3 minutes. He recognized the importance of debating.

What I am going to do is to give you examples. I will mention the audience and the topic for each.

Guest Introduction 1: Good to Great Speech for School Principals

Ladies and Gentlemen,

We have a special guest with us today. Jef Menguin has been at the front line of leadership and learning for years. As the CEO of Strategic Learning Consultants, Inc., he and his team help leaders achieve big things and get great results. But that’s not all.

Jef Menguin isn’t just a leader; he’s been in the classroom too. He was once just like the students we know – attending elementary and high school. Later, he became a teacher, teaching subjects like Political Science. But what he loved the most was his time with young students, watching them grow and learn. He gave ten wonderful years to teaching.

Today, he’s going to talk about “Good to Great.” He’ll share stories and tips about how school leaders and teachers can make schools even better.

So, let’s get ready to learn and be inspired. Please give a big welcome to Jef Menguin!

Guest Introduction 2: Growth Mindset for Company Employees

It warms my heart to see all 537 of you gathered here on this significant occasion. Our anniversary is not just a reflection of our company’s journey, but a testament to each of your contributions. The opportunities ahead are vast, and I want each of you to know how deeply we believe in your potential and how committed we are to supporting your growth.

To further that commitment, we have someone special to share his wisdom with us today. Widely acknowledged as one of the Philippines’ premier voices on leadership, Jef Menguin stands out not just because of his role as the CEO of Strategic Learning Consultants, Inc, but because of the deep reservoir of experiences he brings to the table.

He has penned numerous articles on personal development and the growth mindset, shedding light on paths less trodden and thoughts less pondered.

Today, he will share stories rooted in his personal journey, including a poignant lesson from his grandfather—a lesson so universal that many, including myself, have heard and cherished it in our own families. If you’ve ever been intrigued by the concept of the growth mindset, today is your chance to grasp it from a firsthand perspective.

More than just understanding, Jef Menguin will guide us on how to truly embody this mindset in our daily tasks and broader life visions.

So, as we anticipate learning and evolving together, please join me in extending a warm welcome to our distinguished guest speaker, Mr. Jef Menguin.

Guest Introduction 3: How to Become Better Speakers

Ladies and Gentlemen, fellow Toastmasters,

We’re about to be graced with insights from someone who has not only worn many hats in the Toastmasters organization but also embodies the essence of continuous learning and self-improvement.

Back in 2004, our next speaker embarked on his Toastmasters journey. Over the next three years, he embraced numerous leadership roles – from Vice President for Education to Area Governor. An avid orator, he delivered a staggering 200 speeches.

But it wasn’t for the accolades or credits; it was a burning desire to refine his craft and become a better speaker.

He once believed that mastering the technicalities of public speaking was the key and was often surrounded by well-intentioned advice like “fake it till you make it” and “it is your time to shine”.

But over time, he realized there’s much more to being a transformative speaker than just surface-level guidance.

Today, he’s here to unravel five profound lessons that can mold us into not just better speakers, but possibly, game-changers in the world of public speaking.

Besides his invaluable Toastmasters experience, he leads as the CEO of Strategic Learning Consultants Inc and serves the community as an Area Director.

Without further ado, please give a warm Toastmasters welcome to Distinguished Toastmaster Jef Menguin!

All of these introduction was previously used. Because of the unpredictable ways some emcees introduced their speakers, I always prepare a way to introduce myself. In many cases, emcees are not even prepared to introduce me, so they look for some information in this website.

Public Speaking Articles

If you want to learn how to speak with confidence and power, read the following public speaking posts.

Interesting Articles on Public Speaking

Deliver Persuasive Speeches that Move and Inspire People.  You can also find more than a hundred topics.

30 Public Speaking Questions and Straightforward Answers . I compiled a list of common public speaking questions and gave simple answers.

Write your speaker introduction.  I mentioned this earlier. Find examples of introductions you can send to organizers when you are the speaker.

How Public Speaking Turn ed My Life Around . I was not confident speaking in a crowd. Necessity pushed me.

Deliver Awesome Impromptu Speeches . You can use these tips in most public speaking situations.

Confidence comes from experience and learning. Most of us need to expose ourselves to many speaking opportunities to expand our comfort zone and gain confidence. We can accelerate our learning through deliberate  training in public speaking.

Go to the  public speaker  category to find dozens of public speaking ideas. I offer actionable ideas leaders can use to become persuasive public speakers.

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How to Introduce a Speaker in Any Setting (And Amaze Your Audience)

Hrideep barot.

  • Body Language & Delivery , Public Speaking , Speech Writing

your icebreaker speech on the big day

Importance of a Good Introduction

If you’re reading this, kudos to you as you are one of the few people who actually take out the time and effort to craft a great speech introduction.

Many times we feel that if we ourselves aren’t the main speaker, why take out any time to work on a great introduction?

But here’s the thing, as the introductory speaker, if you want your audience to be excited for the speaker who is about to come on the stage, a strong introduction is important.

As an audience member, if I have never heard of the speaker (or even if I do know a little bit about her) I won’t be very open to their speech simply because I don’t know how credible the speaker is .

Sure the speaker could herself say those credentials when she comes on the stage. But true credibility is added when the praise comes from a third person (that being you in this case). 

Take Tom Bilyeu for example. Tom is the founder and host of the company and popular Youtube channel – Impact Theory where he calls on highly acclaimed speakers, entrepreneurs, writers, athletes, etc. to interview them.

While the interviews are in themselves amazing, it’s the way Tom introduces each of his guests that blows my mind!

Take this clip for example:

The introduction shows that Tom has taken time and put a genuine effort into his research. It’s what makes his introductions so powerful.

And that’s why an introduction is important:

  • It makes your audience excited for who they are about to see
  • It makes the speaker feel genuinely acknowledged for being invited to that event

Without a good introduction, the audience will not have a strong enough reason to be open to the speaker’s ideas because they might not know the credibility of the speaker.

An introduction is also like a short speech . So it’s important you take your time out to craft and deliver one that does justice to both – the speaker as well as yourself!

Note: Want to take your communications skills to the next level? Book a complimentary consultation with one of our expert communication coaches. We’ll look under the hood of your hurdles and pick two to three growth opportunities so you can speak with impact!

Alright! Let’s jump into the tips of creating a splendid introduction. Whether it’s a seminar, conference, interview, church or just a small gathering, these tips are applicable in almost all scenarios.

research the speaker you are about to introduce

Your work starts even before the introductory speech. The person who is invited to speak would be having certain credentials.

The way those credentials are communicated with high effectiveness is your job as the introductory speaker.

This is important as it’s what will get the audience excited and give them a reason to be engaged in a speech because of the credibility of the speaker.

Research can be of two types:

  • You can actually meet or contact the speaker directly and ask her all the questions you would need to create a great introduction.
  • The internet

If you have access to the speaker, then great! If not, use sources like LinkedIn to understand the work they have done in the past, or try and see if you can connect to someone close to them and get a bite from them for the introduction as well.

Once you know what all the speaker has done in her life and why she is an expert in the subject she is going to speak on, you have set yourself up for crafting a lovely introduction.

Keep it short!

One thing to remember when giving an introduction is to not get carried away! While your introduction is as good as a short speech , we must not forget the keyword here – short !

The main spotlight is for the speaker. So keep your intro short. Below 2 and a half minutes is usually a good space to be in. Exceeding 4 minutes is a little too much so make sure to not overstep your speaking time.

I remember seeing this one introductory speaker who just went on and on with his introduction. He spoke about things that weren’t even relevant to the subject of the talk. It was just a waste of time.

When you prepare your introduction, practice it and time yourself to ensure you aren’t taking up too much of the stage time.

We’ve made a short video on how you can make your speech more concise and clear so you communicate what’s relevant without taking up too much of your audience’s time:

Save the name for the end

The last word is the cue for applause in any introduction. And it’s best to save the applause for the speaker’s name.

Here’s an example of how NOT to do it:

“Our motto is ‘Communication is key’. So I’m very pleased to welcome John Brown for our special event today. John is one of the best speakers in the country and has been invited by several prestigious universities to share his ideas…(some more credentials)…So please join me in welcoming John Brown!”

The problem with this is that it gives out the applause factor in the second sentence of the introduction itself.

Instead, you should build up the speaker with her credentials and only reveal the name at the end of the speech (see ‘Introduction Speech Template’).

Again, look at Tom Bilyeu’s introduction. He never reveals the guest’s name until the end of the introduction. That’s what makes the applause so loud!

Lead the applause

As soon as you end your introduction, don’t simply wait for the audience to clap. Lead the applause!

In all likelihood, when done correctly, your audience will applaud as soon as you end your talk. But you should still assume the lead and begin the applause and let the audience follow just in case.

Receive the speaker with a handshake

Receive the speaker with a handshake

When you introduce the speaker and call them out on the stage, don’t just walk off the stage .

Receive the speaker with a handshake. Usually, the audience will still be applauding when this happens.

We do this so as to properly acknowledge to the audience that our time on stage has come to an end and we will now be handing the spotlight over to the next speaker.

This is something that the international organization Toastmasters also harps on. Every time a speaker or role bearer gets on stage, she should shake the hand of the person from whom she is taking the stage from and shake the hand of the person when she is handing the stage over.

Like with most things in life, your introductory speech will be amazing if you put in the time to practice ! We wrote an article on simple but effective ways you should practice for a speech – even if it’s just an introduction speech! Check it out to get some ideas.

While our content and the speaker’s credentials might be amazing, it is our delivery and manner of speaking that will sell the audience on those credentials.

So research, practice, time yourself, video record yourself to see how you can improve.

While the spotlight is on the main speaker for that particular day, the stage is yours for those couple of minutes. And I believe any time you go on stage you should try and communicate with maximum impact regardless of the duration of the speech.

That’s when people notice you.

Here’s a checklist of things you must have in your introductory speech when it comes to content and delivery:

Introduce yourself

While you are here to introduce the main speaker, don’t forget to introduce yourself! If you’re in a familiar setting where you’re certain everyone (or at least 90%) of the audience already knows you, you can skip this part.

Otherwise, take a few seconds to point out what your role is in putting this event together and how you are related to the speaker (if in any way).


There’s nothing worse than an introductory speaker who butchers the name of the speaker he is about to call on.

Take the time out to learn how exactly should you pronounce the speaker’s name especially if it’s an unconventional name.

Learn it, repeat it, master it.

Check if your speaker has any title such as Doctor, Sir, Captain, etc. and say the title along with the speaker’s name when you introduce her. It helps add more credibility to the speaker.


Your speaker would have certain qualifications that make her an expert in the field she is about to speak on. It doesn’t necessarily need to be only educational in nature.

Maybe she has written a book on the subject and gains her expertise from real-life experience as opposed to an academic degree.

Mention those qualifications.

Quick tip, don’t just list out the credentials in a mundane manner. Read the speech template below and see how the speaker crafts the introduction where the qualifications and credentials of the speaker are seamlessly woven together to craft a great introduction.

Subject of the talk

In your introduction of the speaker, don’t miss out on talking a little on the subject of the talk and why it is relevant to the audience.

Creative Ways to Introduce a Speaker

Instead of just stating out the speaker’s credentials and bio, make your introduction engaging by adding a short anecdote of the speaker.

Talk about a time you met the speaker or an interesting story you read about her in a publication.

You can even reach out to a close family member or friend of the speaker and ask them for a story that defines the speaker’s personality or establishes their expertise in the subject matter.

For some more information on how you can create a compelling narrative, we made a short but information-packed video on the topic of mystery, characterisation and takeaways which we HIGHLY recommend you check out, here:

Some speakers don’t necessarily have an honorific such as ‘Dr.’ or ‘Sir’, but that doesn’t mean that you cant give them a creative title of your own!

Tom Bilyeu does this often where he will add a title to the speaker right before saying the name. Here are some examples:

  • Please help me welcoming…the ‘ human guinea pig ’ himself, Tim Ferris .
  • Please help me welcoming…the ‘ master of motivation ’ herself, Mel Robbins .
  • Please help me welcoming…the ‘ man who has been called the ultimate entrepreneur for the information age ’, Seth Godin.

I remember this one time, we were at a conference where the speaker was a gold medal cyclist.

The introductory speaker entered the stage on a cycle himself! As he came to the mike, he said, “Boy that was fun! But if you think I was awesome, you will be completely blown away by our next speaker!”

The introductory speaker was obviously being sarcastic about himself being an ‘awesome cyclist’. But it was different, fun, made the audience giggle and set the stage for the speaker .  

If the speaker you are about to introduce is an author, for instance, you can also start off your introduction by holding up the book and then move on to talk about the speaker’s credentials.

Think about what your speaker is famous for and see if you can include that profession as a prop in your introduction.

Instead of just talking in your introduction, maybe you can show a video that highlights what the speaker does and shows off their credibility.

I was introducing an entrepreneur of a HUGE advertising agency. Instead of talking about his credentials, I thought I’d just show it to the audience by playing a video of the agency’s culture , clients and some of the extraordinary work they have done.

It was a great visual way to showcase the speaker’s credibility and set the tone for the subject of the speech.

Introduction Speech Template

Here’s a template of how Tom Bilyeu introduces one of his guests :

“Hey everyone!  Welcome to Impact Theory. You are here, my friends, because you believe that the human potential is nearly limitless but you know that having potential is not the same as doing something with it. So our goal with this show and company is to introduce you to the people and ideas that’ll help you actually execute on your dream. Alright. To paraphrase Steven Pressfield, today’s guest is one of the greatest thinkers of our generation. He’s a multiple-time best selling author who’s written a seemingly impossible six books in the last five years! His mediation on stoic philosophy ‘The Obstacle is the Way’ is not only a true perennial seller, it’s been translated into more than 20 languages and has a devoted following of some of the most driven and successful people on the planet including NFL coaches, world-class athletes, entrepreneurs, TV personalities and even political leaders. By my estimation, it is one of the 10 most important books you must read if you want to develop a mindset for success. And even if this were his only book I’d sit at his feet to learn, but every book he has written delivers a similar level of impact. This guy is without question my intellectual man-crush Monday! The Systematic and practical nature of his thinking is so powerful it’s nuts, especially considering that he dropped out of college at 19 so he could apprentice with the master author, Robert Greene, and by all accounts, my friends, he learned his lessons very well as he went on from there not only to become an amazing author in his own right, but in his early 20s became the Director of Marketing for the billion-dollar public company American Apparel helping it achieve its astronomical level of success, and in the process, becoming one of the most sought-after voices in the field of media strategy. His incredible marketing tactics detailed in the book ‘Trust Me, I’m Lying’ not only became a best-seller, it helped him launch his own media-consulting company, Brass Check, which has advised companies like Google, Taser and Complex as well as world-renowned authors such as Neil Strauss, Tim Ferris and Tony Robbins. So please, help me in welcoming the best selling author of ‘Ego is the Enemy’ and most recently, ‘Perennial Seller’, the modern-day, philosopher king – Ryan Holiday.

Let’s break that introduction down:

We can clearly see that Tom has done his research by pointing out almost every accomplishment Ryan Holiday is known for. This is what gets the audience excited about the speaker and looks forward to the ideas that will be shared in the subsequent talk or interview.

Keeping it short

The introduction is in the appropriate time-span of 2-3 minutes. Considering the amount of information that had to be said, the timing is bang on!

Saving the name for the end

By saving the name for the end, Tom reserves the maximum applause when he finally reveals who the person is.

Leading the applause

Tom did not lead the applause here maybe because it’s a studio audience who are sure to clap for the guest. Additionally, the way Tom introduces the guest is good enough to stimulate applause without him having to lead it.

Receiving the speaker with a handshake

Tom goes a small step further and bro-hugs the guest to showcase his bond with him.

how to give a introduction speech for a guest speaker

Without any notes and his amazing delivery, it’s obvious Tom has taken the time out to not only research but also practice and rehearse the introduction.

Notice how Tom uses voice modulation to make the audience feel how important Ryan’s accomplishments really are. A handy thing to keep in mind for any speech. You can read this article we wrote to learn all about voice modulation and tonality for effective speaking.

As I stated earlier with multiple examples, Tom adds in a nickname to the speaker here as well – ‘ the modern-day, philosopher king ’ – right before saying the name. It just adds so much weight to the introduction!

There’s a lot we can learn from this introduction whether it be a speaker you are introducing or an interview guest which is why I thought I’d break it down.

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Final Words…

I believe that a strong introduction should also be treated as a speech. It’s tempting to do a basic Google Search and little “rehearsal” right before going on stage.

But it’s only when you take the time out to research, rehearse and deliver with the intention to excite the audience about the speaker you are introducing, is when you will do justice to the introduction and set the stage for the speaker to create maximum impact!

You should also consider upskilling your public speaking at an overall level. If you’re serious about it, check out this online course called Acumen Presents: Chris Anderson on Public Speaking (hosted on Udemy). It’s helped me gain a lot of insight into delivering speeches (even if they are just introductory speeches) that people will remember. Being the founder of TED, Chris Anderson provides numerous examples of the best TED speakers to give us a very practical way of overcoming stage fear and delivering a speech that people will remember.

Hrideep Barot

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How to Introduce a Speaker: 16 Essential Tips for Success

And yet, speech introductions are critical to the success of a speech.

While a strong speech opening is vital, nothing helps establish a speaker’s credibility more than a carefully-crafted and well-delivered introduction.

This article gives you a series of practical tips for how to introduce a speaker to position them with the best possible chance to succeed.

1. Answer three core questions.

When you are introducing a speaker, your primary goal is to prepare the audience and get them excited for what they are about to hear.

To do this, you must answer these three core questions:

What is the topic?

Why is this topic important for this audience?

Why is the speaker qualified to deliver this talk?

By addressing these three questions, you’ve given the audience a motivation for listening (the topic is important to them), and you’ve reinforced the speaker’s credibility.

2. Prepare and practice adequately.

“ While a strong speech opening is vital, nothing helps establish a speaker’s credibility more than a carefully-crafted and well-delivered introduction. ”

At all costs, avoid thoughts such as “Oh, I don’t need to prepare… I’m just introducing a speaker.”

Thoughts like that lead to stumbling, bumbling, off-the-cuff introductions which undermine your credibility and the credibility of the speaker.

You should write out (and edit) the full introduction, check it with the speaker, and practice it several times .

3. Memorize it, or minimize your notes.

Try to memorize the introduction; speaking without notes will add to your authority, and the audience will put more weight in your recommendation (that is, to listen to this speaker).

If you are unable to memorize the entire introduction, then use as few notes as you can. Be sure you can you deliver the last sentence of your introduction without notes as this will maximize momentum for the speaker.

4. Be positive and enthusiastic.

The audience takes cues from you. If you seem disinterested, they will be disinterested. If you are (genuinely) positive and enthusiastic, they will be too. Your choice of words, voice, gestures, and facial expressions should all convey enthusiasm.

So, how do you ensure you are enthusiastic?

5. Get to know the speaker.

It is difficult to get the audience excited about the speaker if you aren’t excited yourself.

If the speaker is previously unknown to you — for example, suppose you’ve volunteered to introduce speakers at a large industry event — your introduction may lack sincerity. So, get to know the speaker. Google them. Talk with them. Ask others about them. Research the speaker and their expertise until you are excited by the opportunity to introduce them.

6. Eliminate pronunciation blunders.

A sure way to undermine your own credibility and that of the speaker is to mispronounce their name, the title of their presentation, or any other key terms.

Luckily, this is easily avoided through practice and by confirming the correct pronunciation with the speaker well before the presentation. (Don’t wait until you are delivering the introduction to ask them — this looks amateurish.)

“ A sure way to undermine your own credibility and that of the speaker is to mispronounce their name, the title of their presentation, or any other key terms. ”

7. Be accurate.

Being accurate is as important as correct pronunciation, perhaps more so. Make sure you know the precise years, facts, or details.

If you make factual errors, many speakers will feel an irresistible compulsion to correct you. This is a lousy way for them to begin their speech, and will almost certainly kill their momentum.

8. Don’t alter the speech title.

Many speakers craft their presentation title very carefully, and the words matter to them. The title may be a phrase they want the audience to remember, it may reflect language used on accompanying slides, or it may be a humorous play on words.

Don’t change it under any circumstances. (And, of course, know how to pronounce it.)

9.Should you attempt humor?

In most circumstances , no. Your objective is to get the audience excited about the topic and the speaker, and this is not the time to tell humorous anecdotes about the speaker. Save those for a roast!

There are exceptions (as there are to all public speaking advice), and you’ll have to use your judgment. If this speech is part of a longer event, and the preceding talk has been particularly sad or low on energy, then it may help to lift the spirits of the audience. If you need to do this, do it early in your introduction, and then move on to the more thought-provoking content leading to your climax.

10. Don’t give an outline of the speech.

I was once introduced by someone who had seen a longer presentation I gave on the same topic two years prior. Not only did they ignore the introduction I had written for them, but they gave a detailed outline of my whole talk, including which parts were their favorites! Unfortunately, my outline had changed substantially, and they had created unreasonable expectations and sabotaged my talk.

Avoid undermining the speaker by giving too many details about the speech, telling anecdotes from their speech, or making promises about details in their presentation. It is the speaker’s job to decide how and when they reveal their outline. Keep your introduction at a high level, unless they have specifically asked you to do otherwise.

11. Stick to relevant expertise of the speaker.

One very common mistake is to recite a lengthy list of biographical details (education, awards, former job titles, publications, etc.) which may or may not be relevant to the topic being presented. This is especially common at academic conferences.

For example, avoid introductions such as:

Our speaker grew up in Seattle and graduated at the top of her mechanical engineering class at Carnegie Mellon University. She went on to earn a Master’s Degree from Duke University, and a Ph.D.  in Computer Science from Harvard. She is a member of the Automotive Engineers Association, and a two-time recipient of the Stone Award for Distinguished Linguistics Research. She was previously the Director of Research at Hasbro, and is currently the CEO for the Miami Dolphins. Her talk today is entitled “How to Build Authentic Shaker Furniture.”

A much better introduction would touch on how many years the speaker had been building shaker furniture, whether she had been trained or self-taught, and that she had written a book on this topic.

Okay, maybe that example was a bit extreme. But, even if the speaker has a lengthy list of biographical details that are related to her talk, there’s no need to recite them all. Pick a small number (about three) that are most relevant — usually the most recent details.

Why not give all the details?

12. Don’t overdo it.

Long introductions filled with biographical details are bad for two main reasons:

  • Long introductions are boring. Nobody attends an event to listen to the introducer go on and on.
  • Long introductions are pompous. Reciting dozens of professional accolades gives the impression that the speaker cares only about himself and his ego.

Keep your introduction just long enough to accomplish your goals: [1] what’s the topic, [2] why does it matter, and [3] why is the speaker credible?

“ Keep your introduction just long enough to accomplish your goals: [1] what’s the topic, [2] why does it matter, and [3] why is the speaker credible? ”

I’m a big fan of short introductions in just about all situations. Sixty or ninety seconds is usually ample time. For really long presentations (e.g. keynote addresses lasting an hour or more), then two or three minutes may be warranted.

13. Avoid cliches.

How many times have you heard: “ This speaker needs no introduction… ” ? While the speaker may indeed be well-known to the audience, nearly every speech benefits from a brief introduction.

14. Avoid exaggerated hype.

Your introduction should get the audience excited about the presentation, but don’t take it too far.

For example, it is reasonable to claim that the presentation will help the audience solve a business problem, save time, or understand the complexities of tax policy.

But, it doesn’t help anyone to claim that “ this presentation will solve all your problems “, or that it is “ the best presentation you’ll ever hear “, or even that “ you’ll be amazed by what you are about to hear “. Lofty expectations will actually have a detrimental effect, because the audience will feel challenged to prove you wrong.

15. Build to a climax.

Your vocal delivery (strength and volume) should build toward the end of your introduction. (Keep it reasonable… there’s no need to yell.) By doing so, the audience will be compelled to welcome the speaker with loud applause.

One effective way to do this is to end with the speaker’s name and explicitly encourage applause:

Ladies and gentlemen, please join me in welcoming our guest speaker, Donna Primeau!

16. Ensure a smooth transition.

Know where the speaker will be as you speak your last words so that you can turn in that direction to greet them.

Etiquette dictates that you should wait for them to come to you (e.g. on the stage, or at the lectern) and then shake hands before you leave. Shaking hands is a symbolic gesture that indicates you are “handing the floor” to them.

Occasionally, the speaker may have a special entrance planned. (e.g. entrance music, a staged stunt, something with a prop) Make sure you ask the speaker about this, and do whatever you can to support them in a successful entrance.

Your Thoughts?

What tips can you share for great introductions?

What introduction blunders drive you crazy?

How long should introductions be?

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On point 15, your readers might like to see some video illustrations on how to get ‘clap on the name’ wrong and how the get it right

There’s also more on how to use this technique in Chapter 10 of my book ‘Lend Me Your Ears: All You Need to Know about Making Speeches and Presentations’

to introduce a speaker the person should have a confident voice, also have the thorough knowledge about the person whom he is introducing

I hope you are planning a follow up article on how to thank a speaker after their presentation. This transition can either keep their momentum going or sap the life right out of an excellent talk. The same person who did the introduction should be prepared to pick up on some of the key points and reinforce the message by making it relevant to the crowd.

Oh, and one more thing. I’d like to see your thoughts on the art of handling Q&A sessions after a talk. These can be highly educational, dreadfully boring, or outright disasters!

How about this? Leading the Perfect Q&A

Andrew, thanks for writing about this often-overlooked aspect of public speaking! As one of those people whose name is frequently mispronounced, I will underline #6. I once had an introducer who introduced me several years in a row at the same event and NEVER got my name right, even after I pronounced it for her many times. Sometimes I just had to re-introduce myself.

The only tip I would add is to ask the speaker if they have a written intro they’d like you to use. I use a humorous intro now, specifically to avoid the boring bio/credential nonsense, and if I’m on top of my game, I actually remember to e-mail it to my introducer in advance of the event. 😉

Great one there Lisa,I also had similar challenge and I didn’t take it easy at all after the event when my fans wanted to mention my name to just applaud me for my wonderful speech. I think it is good some of we speakers at times do the introduction by ourselves to help the game.

Andrew, an important topic that coaches like me spend a surprising amount of time working on with speakers. Getting the introduction right means that a speaker is properly built up for that particular audience. The speaker then has credibility before starting and doesn’t have to brag about herself. I particularly appreciate your point about avoiding humor. I’ve seen far too many VPs of Marketing try to tell a silly story about spilling something on the tie of the presenter, or something equally trivial, and get lost in their own cleverness rather than put the focus on the speaker, where it belongs. One further tip: a presenter should shake the hand of the speaker after the intro as the speaker is moving to the stage. That helps ground the speaker, and makes a visual connection with the speaker for the audience. And one last thought. We often write and produce video introductions for speakers precisely to control the uncertainty that all too often means a bad introduction, despite all the effort expended.

Great tips. I would also add: Make sure you give the audience the #1 reason why they should really want to hear from this speaker.

great i love your point really its important point.

Once again…excellent! This is what I want to let each member in my Toastmaster clubs to learn to do because they generally say something comical or try to make up something or they will read a 1/2 page bio the speaker has given them and it always truns out to be awkard, borig and ineffective.

I generally ask the speaker to send a 2-3 sentence bio of him/her self and to make it relevent his/her speech, but they generally do not do what is asked because they want to put everything down or nothing at all because they seem to think they are not worthy of a good valid intro.

Also many have a tendency to say “without furter ado, after an invalid introduction which tends to drives me crazy.

(Please rest asured, I am not a polished speaker it is just that I am always learning and also impart my learing to the clubs I am in.)

Great info from you as always and this will be my next speech at my TM clubs!

Thank you so very much!

Patricia Cotton

Two things that are subliminal but will make the speaker appear in a power position is 1) have them come to the podium or lectern from the audience right or stage left. It adds to the first words they speak. 2) Make sure the speaker knows who will accept the lectern from them and where they are sitting. Again, shift control at the lectern with a hand shake. This closes the authority of the speaker strongly and leaves energy in the room for the next speaker or meeting closer.

Thanks. Never thought about so many things whenever introduced speaker. I usually learn in advance how the speaker likes to project himself and include it in my introduction.

A brief comment from Denmark. Introductions seem to be very cultural. In Denmark audiences tend to dislike lengthy introductions. We have something called the Jante Law – meaning you should not stand out – this in turn means you would avoid making the speaker shine too much. Actually Danes in general are terrible at introducing each other. Often in ordinary encounters between people – it does not happen at all.

Write your own introduction and hand it to the person introducing you. Never leave this to chance. Make sure this person has good delivery skills. The introduction is your warm-up act.

great! regarding #5 you could send him/her an email upfront asking about his/her greatest passion in life. once you have this information you can involve the audience right from the start by asking them: “who of you loves kite surfing?” 😉

And never ever use the worn out & meaningless phrase, “without further ado.”

Thanks for this great article. It will definitively help me in the Master of Ceremony role in a Toastmaster meeting.

My comment is on item 11 ‘Stick to relevant expertise of the speaker’. While it is good to keep all comments short in public speaking, for this part especially in Africa and Nigeria particularly, speakers are more motivated to have their achievements reeled out during the introduction stage. Their achievements here are in areas of educational attainments, qualifications and key positions held. If it is too brief like one minute that you suggested, it will not be exciting at all in this environment. The Speaker will feel that you do not acknowledge is achievements. I think there is environmental difference as to what the audience and the speaker expect. I have attended conferences outside Nigeria, and I saw where speakers were introduced say moderately for about 5 minutes.

Thank you for a job well done

The same is the case in India too where most of the speakers like to be introduced vividly and grandly. Hope they read this useful article and modify their expectations..

What a great article. This can make a huge impact to get the audience excited about the speaker or not.

Thanks for the article – very informative. I would make my number 1 item, REMEMBER, IT’S NOT ABOUT YOU!

Afer reading this article, I was very surprised. I attend many conferences, lectures, and speeches, in my profession. In almost all cases, the introduction odf the speaker has included the part of step number 11 that one is suppose to NOT do. That said, it never has seemed to uninterest the audiences. I enjoyed this article and look forward to more.

I agree, Dianne. It is extremely common for introductions to be very lengthy and include numerous non-relevant details. Still, that does not make it right.

i actually stumbled onto this page as a speaker who was asked “how should i introduce you”. This was very helpful for focusing on what to write and what information is important at that moment. thanks

Andrew, I’ve never seen the topic covered so well, and I’ve been a toastmaster for many years. Great job! My question is if the speaker gives you an intro, do you just present it as given? I’ve had an emcee take my carefully crafted intro and paraphrase every sentence. Boy, was that annoying!

Yes, a paraphrased intro can be frustrating.

If the speaker gives you a prepared intro, and it follows all of the advice in the article, then I would probably present it as given.

If the prepared intro violates one or more of the guidelines, or if it didn’t feel quite right for some reason, I’d chat with the speaker about finding the right “fit” to both fit their talk, and the event as a whole. Occasionally, there are strategically placed keywords or phrases in a prepared intro that are part of the speaker’s presentation message or brand, and they would be upset if they were changed. On the other hand, sometimes the intro can be modified. As I said, talk to the speaker and work it out ahead of time.

The same exact teaching from Dale Carnegie, that means it is proven. 🙂

Andrew, Great post covering all the main points about how to introduce a speaker. What I’d ask you, is what would you recommend for a first timer? 16 points can be a bit intimidating. For me, I think over the speakers we’ve had at our public speaking club, and the two most important lessons from your list are (1) be enthusiastic and (2) build to a climax (so everyone knows its over). If I’ve got a rookie, giving it a go for the first time, what directions would you give them to make their introductions crisp?

If you are just starting with speech introductions and the entire set of advice is too daunting, my recommendation is to start with the very first point and answer the three core questions:

Andrew, Regarding transition and “shake hands before your leave”, is it ok for introducer to sit or stand behind or to the side of speaker when he/she leaves? I’ve seen introducers do this and it is a distraction because they are visible and don’t sit still. Why not require introducer to sit in front row as a rule unless there is a dais with honorees, etc.? Is there a rule on this?

I wouldn’t say there’s any strict rule (every situation is different), but a reasonable guideline is “Don’t detract from the speaker in any way.” This would forbid things like “sitting behind them and distracting the audience.”

I will introduce our guest speaker during our organization’s coronation night. My questions: 1. Do I have to shake his hand before and after his speech? 2. After introducing him, do I have to leave him at the lectern and sit on my assigned sit or stand behind him while he talks?

I really like the tips, but can’t really tell if your misspelling of the word gaffe is intended to be humorous–a gaff is a hook used by fishermen. And it is a gaffe to use incorrect terminology such as gaff for gaffe. (smiley-face here)

You caught me… it was unintentional (but very ironic). I’ve updated to replace the word with “blunder”.

Great post! Informative and to the point. I would like to ask what a speaker should do if the person who introduces him or her makes a mistake in his or her name? Thus, if the name of a speaker was not pronounced correctly, should the speaker correct it or make a joke about it?Also, can anyone provide a link to an example of a proper introduction? Thank you.

Well said – I learned this 3 step approach when I was working for the Dale Carnegie organization and have used it for over 3 decades — it works people – it works – and they will remember you as much as the speaker.

By not preparing to introduce a speaker is like saying the speaker is not worth the time to get to know, which sends signals to the audience with the same message, why should they listen to someone whose introduces doesn’t event care about? Take the time, learn your speaker, highlight the importance and significance of that speaker and build up the speech for the audience to be WOW’d! This is great advice I need to share with our audience on the Speaking of Wealth Show ( where we talk to several successful authors and publishers, along with writing tips and advice to better their skills, just like you. Thanks again for the blog!

Iam aboutto introduce my son on sunday at church for the speaker of the hour.

Thanks this article is very informative and guidingly useful in my incoming and future conferences and events.. God Bless..

I have found many impact full speeches had an impromptu(spontaneous) introduction as that had great relevance. Whats your take on that ?

i live in a university town and get to attend many lectures given by the famous and not so famous. i am always amazed and embarrassed by the lack of good introductions given to many of these guests. i cringe so often, and i wonder why few find it important to learn good speaking techniques in this area. keep up the good work and hopefully you can get the word out.

Dear Mr. Dlugan: Your report today is very timely as I am one of several Toastmasters coaching our future world leaders who in this case are top high school students who will, after several months of coaching, conduct the 13th Annual 4-DAY YOUTH LEADERSHIP CONFERENCE held at the U.S. Space & Rocket Center in Huntsville, AL, for about 90 to 100 top students from several states. As a long time Toastmaster who joined as a Toastmistress when accidentally attending a meeting in Bangkok, Thailand, back before Toastmasters had the good sense to admit females, my reason for joining had more to do with having an opportunity as a journalist to meet people from 9 different nations and all walks of life share their backgrounds and cultures while learning to better their communication skills. It took 29 years and a cause outside myself to spur me to make speeches so I might learn to better influence people to support issues I thought important. And having the opportunity to coach these outstanding youths who will soon be leading our country and the world in which our offspring and theirs will live is certainly one of them. As one of the major duties the teens we are coaching will have is to introduce themselves AND outstanding leaders in the fields on which the YLC is based: Leadership, Patriotism & Heritage, and Free Enterprise, your advice on how to give introductions is very timely and I am happy to share it with these youths, areaToastmasters and the M.O.W.W. members who are sponsoring the conference. Thank You so much. Respectfully, Gerry Coffey, Speaking Easy Toastmasters, Decatur, AL “If you have the ability, you have the responsibility” –author unknown

Gerry Coffey, CAJA: Court Appointed Juvenile Advocate Health Educator/Councilor/Past Global Media Liaison, IVU M.O.W.W. Deputy Director: YOUTH LEADERSHIP CONFERENCE TEDx Huntsville 2015 Team Coffey

Great post, Andrew! In general, the importance of introductions is underrated. They are the first step into true engagement between speakers and participants. And writing the introductions help the moderator ‘get into the meeting’.

There’s one element I’d like to add to number 1, the three core questions: why is this speaker relevant at this moment in the meeting? This goes to the meeting design, and helping the participants see the logic in that. It may be for instance, that the first speaker showed there is a problem and that the second one adresses how to solve it.

That’s a good point. If there is an important relationship between speakers at an event, then a good introduction would highlight that relationship.

Excellent points . Thanks

Thank you Andrew. Since our goal is communication, the tips you have outlined help the person doing the introduction, the speaker, and the audience. I am teaching a Leadership Training Class, one of the sessions is “Introducing a Speaker.” I am using your article as a hand out, of course giving you credit and including this site, I hope you don’t mind. It is well written. Thank You; Steve Mann Pastor

Thanks Andrew. Great detail in this post. Regards, Dave

Do the same pointers work for non speaking introductions? I am an introducer for lots of different types of presenters – singing groups, worship leaders, drama groups, etc. Shoukd I follow the same points?

For the past years, I have made a lot of mistakes when introducing a speaker, but as I have learned these tips, I will do my best.

I find the instructions very educative, thanks.

Thankyou for your article i particularly appreciated you bringing out the concept of building to a climax and decreasing the importance and va-va-voom factor of the person introducing. Its not about me , its about the person I am calling up.

Also the reminder to be interested (truly or superficially) is normally forgotten.

Very well explained. All points covered from start to end

Introducing a speaker is easy, especially if you know the information regarding the person, It takes confidence, relax and enjoy the moment.

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Ever been a speaker? And the person introducing you got it so wrong? Here’s how it should be done — @alan_gilmour Oct 9th, 2015
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4 Blog Links

Tyneside Speakers Club » How to Introduce a Speaker: 16 Essential Tips for Success — Dec 14th, 2010

Art of Presenter Introductions | Master Marketing from Marketing 24/7 — Sep 19th, 2011

Links We Love: Attending Conferences Like a Pro | CareerAdvisorDaily — Aug 14th, 2013

Links We Love: Attending Conferences Like a Pro | The Daily Muse — Aug 15th, 2013

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