Several years ago, I attended a traveling production of a Broadway musical. The play ended on a high note with thrilling music and a standing ovation.
But then something happened. A single actor stepped forward to announce that the company was collecting donations for some cause or another and that cast members would be stationed at the exits to accept our gifts. In just a few sentences, he completely destroyed the elaborate fantasy world that he and his colleagues had built over the last two hours. The problem wasn’t the cause; it was the timing. And I’m guessing the cast would have raised just as much money if there’d been an announcement in the printed program and/or posters at the exits or if he’d spoken before the show began.
The same thing happens at many Eagle courts of honor. After the presentation of the Eagle badge, which should be the ceremony’s highlight, the master of ceremonies makes additional long-winded presentations or—worse yet—announcements that drag us back into the real world far too soon.
It’s far better to make announcements at the beginning of the ceremony, letting the evening end on a high note. After all, the most important thing people should take away from your event is not that popcorn order forms are due next Thursday.
For more great ideas, check out my ebook, Showtime: 45 Top Tips from EagleBook.com and The Eagle Court of Honor Book; it costs just $2.99 and is available for immediate download from both EagleBook.com and Amazon.com.