Expertise and Style for Every Occasion
Discover more about the role of a professional Toastmaster and the benefits of using a qualified Toastmaster or Master or Ceremonies for your special occasion.
The benefits of having a Toastmaster
To most people attending any function the only visible signs of a Toastmaster’s presence are the relatively few announcements he makes. That concept of a Toastmaster is, however, completely misleading. A Toastmaster is, in fact, an experienced event organiser, who is also an expert in procedure, protocol and etiquette, who adds dignity as well as presence to each and every occasion. A professionally trained and qualified Toastmaster has the combination of tact, experience, diplomacy and management skills, which are necessary for the effective and smooth running of any function and the direction and enjoyment of large numbers of people.
A professional Toastmaster works in close liaison with his/her customer to ensure the effective overall management of every type of event and weddings of any culture. He/she possesses a high degree of sensitivity and empathy, together with breadth and depth of knowledge of protocol and event organisation. Ninety per cent of a Toastmaster’s activity is never seen by the majority of people attending a function. His/her discrete and unobtrusive attention to detail and close liaison throughout an event ensure that it flows, apparently quite effortlessly, to the successful conclusion, which is the customer’s aim and wish.
What does a Toastmaster do throughout the big day?
The Toastmaster will arrive at the venue ninety minutes to two hours before you in order to liaise with the banqueting manager and other venue staff to ensure that everyone is working to the same plan and timing of events. He/she will work closely with photographer and videographer to ensure that they understand the timings and thereby assist in events running to time, as well as ensuring that they have the best support possible for the success of their own professional tasks. The Toastmaster will greet all the guests and do everything necessary to maximise their enjoyment of the day; he/she will keep them in the picture regarding the time he will call them to the tables so that they will have time to make themselves comfortable.
The Toastmaster will organise the Receiving Line if one is being held and, if required, announce the guests who are presented to it (not everyone chooses to have their guests announced). Once all the guests are at their tables, the Toastmaster will announce the formal entrance of the Bride and Bridegroom and lead them to their seats. He/she will keep an eye on everything during the service of the meal and make sure throughout that the Bridal Party and all guests are enjoying themselves and have everything they need. He/she will arrange the cutting of the Wedding Cake and invite guests to take their own photographs; he/she will ensure that the Wedding Guest Book is circulated for guests to record their messages to the happy couple.
The Toastmaster will liaise with band, DJ and any other entertainment to make sure that everything is in place for the start of the evening function and will introduce the band/DJ and the first dance by the Bride and Bridegroom.
What distinguishes a professional Toastmaster from an unprofessional one?
Anyone can buy a red tailcoat and set up as a Toastmaster; there is no formal regulatory licensing scheme. You should always look for a Toastmaster who has been thoroughly and professionally trained and has qualified as a full Member or Fellow of a recognised Guild, which provides support to Toastmaster and customer in the event that the appointed Toastmaster should become unavailable through illness or other unforeseen mishap.
You should expect to be quoted a firm and fixed fee for the service, which should include at least one home visit to enable you and the Toastmaster to get to know each other and you should expect to receive a formal booking form with clear contract conditions for your consideration and signature before you make any payment.
Contract signature will involve a deposit of up to 50% of the agreed fee which confirms reservation of the date in the Toastmaster’s diary for your exclusive use. A good, professional Toastmaster will not expect you to make any payment before you have received a firm contract offer and satisfied yourself that your requirements have been properly recognised. The Toastmaster will also be prepared to supply you when the contract has been signed with detailed advice for the planning of your big day and guidance notes for the three traditional speeches by the Father of the Bride, the Bridegroom and the Best Man.
To sum up, using a professional Toastmaster ensures the following:-
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