Thursday, February 20, 2014

Awards Banquet Struggles

Heather has the responsibility to run this year's awards dinner banquet. She is dreading the task. "The past 5 years the awards banquet has become a nightmare.  Low attendance, long speeches, little entertainment, and bad jokes which make the evening a long, drawn out affair have become a standard at this event. Making it worse, the same boring people are asking to be presenters", says Heather.

Heather is looking to change the awards dinner banquet and is starting with the entertainment.  After all, the past five years a DJ was hired. Why not get something different? she thought, and researched banquet acts. Happily, I can say "she called me."

I listen to what Heather envisioned.  She painted a beautiful picture, something that reminded me of the Oscars, or Tony Awards. The conversation kept coming back to how long, boring, and how much time was wasted on the presentation. It was not so much that she was looking for an act, but more of an Emcee to smoothen out the rough spots and make the evening enjoyable.

As much as I want to say that show will solve the problem, I knew in my hearts of hearts that she needed a good Emcee.  A professional Emcee will transform a mundane awards show into a remembered evening.

I told Heather, "I would love to entertain your audience, and I'm going to send you a quote, but it sounds like an Emcee would really help your event."  Heather was thrown for a loop. She had talked to several acts, and none of those acts had mentioned the word "Emcee".  Most just pushed their act.

I recommended to Heather to look at the National Speaker Association (NSA), Toastmasters, or Funny-Business Agency that specializes in Comedian. Find a professional who has the skill set to Emcee at an awards banquet.

Sad to say, Heather did not book me for this engagement.  In fact, she kept the DJ and hired an Emcee.  I am still on Heather radar, and she has assured me that the company has other events where my entertainment would be more beneficial and lucrative.

Take Away Tips

  1.     Do not assume changing the entertainment act will solve the problem.
  2.     A professional emcee can improve an awards dinner banquet by 100%.
  3.     Control the presentation and keep it fun and interesting.
  4.     Work with people who have your best interest at heart.

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