I know this site is about public speaking, but I cannot go through the whole summer without dropping a few words about weddings. At the end of the day, it is also a form of public speaking. So here comes my 5 rules of eMCeeing in five parts. Today it is rule #1.
My background regarding weddings
I’ve been an emcee at weddings for the last couple of years. I didn’t start from scratch but had and still have one of the best MCs of Hungary as my mentor: Gabor Herendi.
We first met at a prison… Yes, that is right, he and I went to prison… with a group of people to teach inmates to learn public speaking. So we can sincerely say, we got to know each other behind the bars.
A few months later, on my first wedding, I was in a black suit and tie with white shirt and people were asking me stuff like how should they stand before the walk in and in what order should the bridesmaids go after one another.
Little did I know about these questions, but I swiftly picked up the basics of emceeing.
The tough part came later.
EMCee Rule #1: Smile
One day, Gabor came to one of my weddings to check, how I was doing. He was there during the first part, the civil ceremony.
From my side, this is what I experienced:
I felt stressed of guests not entering the ceremony room when I asked them.
I was anxious because the catering didn’t serve the champagne at the place we agreed.
I was annoyed because when I asked people to e.g.: gather for a photo, they made faces.
I didn’t know if I was doing something wrong, or it was just the weather, or the guests, or the day.
Then Gabor, after observing my work for a while, before he left, he sent me a text message.
“Atis, you are doing great: you keep your hands on everything and professionally conducting the flow of events. There is only one thing: Atis. Smile!”
See that picture up Above, with the loudspeaker? That is how I looked from the outside. Like a police officer, right?
I didn’t think, it was that big of a deal. I thought, sure, why not? I can do that. Anyways, it is a wedding.
So I decided to smile from then on.
I know it sounds lame that a smile changes everything, but here is what happened.
After a few minutes of smiling, I started to feel more chilled. I started to enjoy the day.
Instead of only focusing on “Why doesn’t the band play yet?!” I noticed small and joyful things, like “How thoughtful that the young couple prepared this instant camera for the guests to have fun!”
On top of that, the catering started to smile back at me and became willing to help me with whatever solvable problem aroused.
The guests became forgiving when I walked up to them to ask to walk inside the restaurant for the first dance to take place.
A small, simple, effortless act: a smile.
Something that is not dependent on the weather, or on the mood of the guests. It is only a result of a conscious decision.
Then and there, I started to learn that to become a pro in any field, it is not enough to just “Do the job”.
It is essential, to observe the result of your job, analyze what was your role in the result and finally: make that decision of doing what it takes to get the result that you want.
My first rule of doing the perfect job at a wedding became, to smile.
What is your number 1 rule for your professional job?
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