How Do You Make Opening Remarks at an Event?

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Making opening remarks at an event involves greeting people and making a statement of purpose or motivation. Often, it’s helpful to begin with a rhetorical question, an appropriate quotation or a provocative statement. While preparing opening remarks, it’s important to remember that the point of the welcoming speech is to help everyone attending the event look forward to what’s coming next.

The tone of opening remarks at an event should reflect whether the event is supposed to be fun or serious. Opening remarks should greet the attendees at an event and should also offer a special welcome to any honored guests or dignitaries. Do a little research to make sure all names are pronounced correctly and that the appropriate people are thanked. Be prepared to answer likely questions before they’re asked or to promise those attending the event that their questions will be answered later.

The first few sentences of any opening remarks let the audience know whether to pay attention or expect to be bored. Starting with a powerful opening grabs the audience’s attention. Tell a humorous or moving anecdote that the audience can relate to, or paint a visual picture with words. A bold statistical claim or a question that gets the audience thinking are also good ways to capture their interest.