Public Speaking: To Be or Not To Be Introduced?July 31st, 2009 by Frank Damelio
Whenever you are guest presenting, always opt to be introduced by someone else, and make sure YOU write the intro. One reason is that it’s far better for a member of the group to get everyone’s attention. I’ve seen guest speakers who were not introduced just stand there for what seems an eternity while the group settles down. While this happens far more often at informal gatherings, it still severely diminishes your authority.
In most cases, though, the organization will have someone introduce you. Don’t wait until that day to give them a resume or copy off your website. Instead, write a short intro that highlights some of your great accomplishments. The intro is very important because it helps people decide if they are going to be listening or considering their to-do list for the rest of the day.
Unless you have a name like John Smith, write your name phonetically, and capitalize the stressed syllable. Mine is Frank Damelio (Dah-MILL-ee-oh).
In advance, send the person introducing you the written intro via email, AND take with you a copy in an envelope labeled “introduction”. In my experience, one in five people will forget to bring your intro to the event.
Remember to keep it pithy. If you have tons of accolades this could be challenging. Write them all down, then select your top three to five for the group you will address. If you’re new to the speaking field it can be a challenge to conjure enough to impress the audience. You can always build your intro credentials by doing some free speeches for big-name organizations or at conferences in your field of expertise.
If you want to see what my intro looks like, just email me here, and write “INTRO” in comments.
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