Master of Ceremonies

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Being a Master of Ceremonies
The Master of Ceremonies is the "conductor" of an event or meeting. The primary responsibility of the Master of Ceremonies is to serve as a genial host. An ideal MC is a person who has poise, presence and who can command the attention of an audience.

The Master of Ceremonies is responsible for ensuring that the program/event runs smoothly, runs on time and that all important people at the event are introduced in a complimentary, professional manner. Being a successful Master of Ceremonies requires, preparation, a friendly manner and ability to adjust to/ad lib as necessary to ensure a successful event "It is an honor to be asked to be the master of ceremonies at a function. It means that you have a sense of humor, know how to project your voice, and can handle audiences. It means that you have the gift of being able to "think on your feet" so that you can react quickly in an emergency. (An 'emergency' arises when the lead entertaining act has not arrived, when the main speaker falls ill and has to be taken home, or when the air-conditioning ceases to function and the microphones don't work!)." Letitia Baldrige's Complete Guide to Executive Manners, Rawson Associates, New York, 1985,  P. 320

The Master of Ceremonies Role
Before the Event
1. A successful Master of Ceremonies is thoroughly prepared. Meet with organizers well in advance of the event to confirm the purpose of the event and the planned agenda in detail.

2. If possible contact all speakers or others who will have a role in the  program and confirm their responsibilities, time allotted to them and anything they might require at the event. In preparation for introducing key speakers contact them to find out the title/topic of their presentation and some background information on them. Use this information to prepare your introduction of the speaker.

3. Find out if there will be any special guests in attendance who should be acknowledged at the event. At the Event
"Preside with sincerity , energy and decisiveness. Take your audience on a pleasant journey and make them feel that all is going well".

    Toastmasters International, When You Are the Toastmaster 1. Arrive early in order to finish any last minute details. Check with speakers and other meeting participants to make sure all their requirements are in place (if not take steps to address any problems if you can) and in case there are any last minute changes. 2. Confirm whether expected special guests are indeed in attendance. 3. Have an agenda and plan to stick to it. If there is not a formal agenda consider preparing a detailed script for yourself outlining everything you have to do, a timetable, including breaks, so that you will know what is supposed to happen when and so you won't forget something important.

4. Start on time and plan to end on time.

5. Be prepared.
While you can plan well, things can run amuck. Be aware that this can happen and have a possible strategy to address problems that might occur. The ideal MC is resourceful, creative, flexible and able to respond to problems "on the fly". | | |Your objective is to keep the event running on time.  Attendees appreciate an event that runs on time. | |We'll bless our toastmaster, | |Wherever he may roam, | |If he'll only cut the speaker short, | |And let us all go home". | |Paul Dickson, Toasts,  Crown Publishers, New York, 1991, p. 230 | |Consider the following tips:...
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