ALLOW ME TO INTRODUCE.... - Con Koutsikas Public Speaking and Communication Trainer and Coach

Allow me to introduce……

You would think an introduction of a speaker or presenter would be pretty easy.  Mention their name, a bit about what they do, what you think, a couple of wise cracks to embarrass them, a few gratuitous laughs and job done.  WRONG!!  Work colleagues and friends are famous for this type of introduction.  They think they are being funny and getting the audience ready for you but what they are really doing is minimizing your credibility as the speaker or presenter and making themselves look like knuckleheads.  The importance of the introduction cannot be minimised.  It is crucial and indeed does have a massive impact in preparing the audience for what they are about to hear.

As a speaker, I would ensure I have prepared my own intro and spoken to the MC to ensure they are clear that they are to read what is provided and NO ad-libbing.

As an MC, I would contact the speaker and ask them to provide their own introduction or the key points they want you to include.  So what makes a great introduction?

The Speakers Name

  • Say it clearly and distinctly.
  • Confirm the pronunciation of the speaker’s name.
  • Confirm the title or credentials of the speaker.


  • The title and the purpose of the speech or presentation.


  • The relevance of the speech to the audience.
  • The WIIFM (What’s in it for me) Why is the audience there?


  • The reason or reasons why the speaker is qualified to speak on the particular subject
  • Is it personal experience, a degree or other formal training?

Other relevant information depending on the presentation could include the length of the presentation, if there will be Q&A, when it will be and for how long.

An introduction should be brief and well planned. Don’t try to present too many facts in the short time.  Writing a good introduction is only half the job.  The other half includes a relaxed professional delivery that creates a friendly link between the speaker and the audience.  An introduction should take only 1-2 minutes.

What should NOT be part of an introduction?

These should be avoided at all costs.

  • Never upstage or diminish the speaker.  It’s not about you.  You may have higher qualification and you may have spoken to a bigger audience but this is not the time or the place to bring it up.  Belittling or making fun about either them or the subject matter is taboo!
  • Your opinions or beliefs on the upcoming subject matter or the presenter are an absolute no-no.
  • Don’t reveal contents of the speech.  It’s not for you to do, it’s for the speaker.
  • Don’t surprise the speaker.  A funny story about how he got locked up on your buck’s night is probably the last thing he wants to hear and no one else knew….until now!
  • Don’t use unnecessary superlatives.  If the speaker is not world renowned don’t say he is.

So an example of a good introduction would incorporate the 4 points above in the following structure.

“Our next speaker is (Speakers name) and their speech topic is (Speech Title)

  • A few points

With (speech title) please welcome (Speakers name)

Remember this is about preparing the audience for the presentation.

If you’re presenting multiple speakers a professional introduction will also include recognition of the previous speaker.  A few well-chosen remarks keeping it brief would be appropriate then moving on to your introduction.

Don’t under estimate your importance as the introducer and the role your introduction plays in preparing the audience and setting the scene for a successful presentation.

As always we look forward to your comments and feedback.

Until next week, my name is Con and I am The Con Versationalist

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