Introductions: Larry James
Their Care &
- NOTE: As a professional
speaker, it is wise to exercise responsibility and assume ownership of your own
introduction. A bad introduction, can ruin a good meeting!! An un-prepped
introducer often will under-state or over-state the facts about the speaker to
the audience, confusing fact until it's fiction, and sometimes accurately
articulating the irrelevant until the audience loses interest. A disinterested
audience is a speaker's nightmare. So is a bad introduction.
Nearly thirteen years ago, I had an introduction that went something like this:
"This afternoon we have a special speaker who will talk about. . ." (he paused
and looked at me, hoping I would offer the topic, and continued) "Ah. . . I think
his topic will be of interest to you. Here's Larry. . . ah. . . Jones!" My name
is Larry JAMES. How embarrassing for HIM.
When this happened I promised myself that I would do everything I could to keep
the introducer from making a complete fool of himself and instead help him prep
the audience with an introduction that would establish my credibility to speak on
the topic and help the audience to know they were going to hear the real "me." I
also determined to provide the introducer with some guidelines to demonstrate the
important part they were playing in the event.
I always write my own introduction. I send a copy to the person who hired me to
speak and also bring an extra copy with me (just in case). In addition, when I
send the introduction to the meeting planner, I staple a copy of the following as
a cover sheet to stress the importance of the introduction.
To some of you, this may appear to be an extreme, however, I have yet to have a
meeting planner object and most of my introductions have been presented in a more
- Bonus Idea - Rita Emmett,
Professional Speaker, says, "When you give the meeting planner a copy of your
introduction on the day of the presentation, print your introduction on
colored paper (so it stands out from the other papers they are
schlepping around) and use 14 or 16 point type to make it just a bit easier to read."
- Bonus Idea - Include a brief statement in the introduction that politely
asks everyone to please turn their cell phones and pagers off before the speaker begins
so everyone will be able to enjoy the program.
Here is what I attach to the introduction:
Their Care and Feeding!
For best results at your meeting. . .
Give the attached introduction and this flyer to the introducer; someone who is
willing to commit to follow the following guidelines. If they can't make the
commitment, give it to someone who will.
Why bring this up? Because. . . you must always take a good introduction
A bad introduction, can ruin a good meeting! A good introduction creates
the attitude of listening the audience will have for the speaker. It sets the
stage. It establishes a partnership with the introducer and the speaker and helps
the speaker connect with the audience.
For a partnership to work, it takes cooperation, both from the speaker and the
introducer. A good introduction for the speaker will inspire the speaker to live
up to the expectations talked about in a good introduction. A bad introduction
will most always affect the speaker, even a professional speaker, as well as the
The introducer does not have to be great, just better than usual. For anyone to
be better than usual, you must always do more than you've done in the past. It
takes concentration on the task at hand. It takes a commitment to do a good
Ad-libbing does not work! Most of the time it will make the introducer look
bad. An ad-libbed introduction, often comes across as "thrown together." Never
"wing-it." People who "wing-it" in life do not come across as professionals. It
makes them look and sound as if they were unprepared.
1. Remember to bring the introduction with
you to the meeting!
2. Practice, drill and rehearse. It is good
to practice reading it in front of a mirror. Read it over until you feel
comfortable with it!
3. Stop at the periods and pause at the
commas! Also pause when laughter occurs, if it occurs!
4. Read the introduction word for word.
Please, no ad-libbing!
5. Read it with enthusiasm. Make it sound
like you are glad the speaker is there. Don't overdo it, you don't have to be as
good as the speaker!
6. After you've read the introduction, turn
to the speaker, shake his or her hand and take your seat!
Thank you for your consideration! These "Introduction Guidelines" are provided
as a courtesy of your speaker. Let's have a GREAT meeting! Thanks, again!
Copyright ę - Larry James.
Larry James is a professional speaker and author of "How to Really Love the One You're
With: Affirmative Guidelines for a Healthy Love Relationship," "LoveNotes for Lovers:
Words That Make Music for Two Hearts Dancing!" and "Red Hot LoveNotes for Lovers."
NOTE: This article is available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters,
newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own website. Click
here to obtain permission and for details.
If you have additional ideas of your own that you are willing to share, please
send me an e-mail (LarryJames@CelebrateLove.com). I
am always open to new ideas! Thanks in advance.
Relationship books by Larry James:
How to Really Love the One You're With:
Guidelines for a Healthy Love Relationship
LoveNotes for Lovers:
Words That Make Music for Two Hearts Dancing
Red Hot LoveNotes for Lovers (Career Assurance Press).
Author Larry James is a professional speaker. He presents "Relationship
Enrichment LoveShops" nationally for singles and couples. More About Larry James
For a personally autographed copy of Larry's books, or for
more information, please contact:
P.O. Box 12695
Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695
Fax 480 998-2173