It is far from uncommon for charities and nonprofit groups to hold fundraising events—whether auctions, fashion shows, or galas—to bring in donations and also to raise cause awareness. The success of these events often hinges on the quality of the master of ceremonies, who can draw people to the affair while ensuring that the presentation is fun, entertaining, and coherent. Not all emcees are created equal, however—and in a new statement to the press, Apple insider and long-time charity fundraiser Michael Hageloh reveals some of the most important qualities to look for in a master of ceremonies. He is currently offering his emcee services free of charge to nonprofit organizations across the United States in an effort to help further their fundraising endeavors.
“The emcee is the glue, holding the whole show together, and in some cases he or she is also a big factor in getting people to come out to the event,” Hageloh comments, in his press statement. “The choice of who to engage as an emcee is not one that event planners should make haphazardly.” Hageloh has himself emceed many charity events, drawing on his extemporaneous personality to bring a sense of fun and spontaneity to the proceedings.
In his press statement, Michael Hageloh points to an article from NOLO.com, which offers a list of do’s and don’ts for organizations selecting a master of ceremonies. One of the biggest cautions is to never default to a board president or executive director to serve as the event emcee. “Some board directors may be great in the role, but it’s important to ask them about previous emceeing experience and to review their past performances,” Hageloh offers.
The NOLO.com article also recommends that event planners consider the specific tasks that the master of ceremonies will be asked to handle. In some cases, the job is a simple matter of introducing a couple of speakers, using written introductions. In other instances, the emcee will be asked to do more to guide the show along and to keep the audience engaged. In these cases, a seasoned emcee is recommended over someone with comparatively little public speaking experience.
It is also important to cast a wide net in the emcee search, NOLO.com reports. The ideal is to enlist someone closely tied to the organization, but in many cases the best emcee is someone who is not tied to the group but does have public speaking skills, as well as a passion for the cause.
“Do not feel like you need to restrict the search to your local area or even necessarily to a particular vertical or industry,” Hageloh concludes. “It is worth putting some time into the recruitment of a skilled master of ceremonies, with a proven track record.”
More information about Hageloh’s own emceeing availability can be found at his website, www.hageloh.com.
Serving as director of special projects focused on the sales education initiative at the University of South Florida, Michael Hageloh is a proven sales executive with more than 20 years of experience.
Much of that experience is with Apple Inc., where he began in the company’s education division in 1988. Hageloh moved into a crucial role within Apple’s sales organization. In that role, he developed a vertical education selling strategy and forged relationships with thought leaders, policymakers, and other influencers in the education and technology spheres. He also acquired experience in a key academic sales role at Adobe, where he facilitated, along with French banking and financial services firm Socit Gnrale, a unique single licensing transaction valued at $11.7 million. Overall, Hageloh delivered close to a billion dollars in revenue during the course of his career.