The pitfalls of getting your mate to MC your wedding
Thinking about asking your best friend to MC your wedding?
There are pitfalls in getting your mate to MC your wedding …
- Your mate forgets to bring their copy of the final run sheet.
- They don’t leave enough time to do their pre-event checks.
- When the entrée comes out, they’re outside having a ciggie.
- They start loving the sound of their own voice and Won’t. Shut. Up.
- They’re enjoying their meal, when they should be introducing the next speaker.
- What happened in Vegas doesn’t end up staying there.
- They get drunk and mispronounce your partner’s dad’s name.
- They hit on one of the wait staff (or worse, one of the bridesmaids. Who’s married).
- They don’t know what to do when it comes to the cake bit.
- They’re trollied by the time the night is over and they don’t close the proceedings.
Yeah, not much at all …
Look, I have seen it work. I’ve seen friends do a stellar job. And that is how I got started. But I also had professional voice work plus events planning experience under my belt before I landed my first wedding.
Everyone has a horror story about an MC at a wedding they attended.
A friend recently told me she was at a wedding where the MC was good at the speaking bits, but very clearly didn’t have any events management experience. She said it was really obvious he stressed bordering on panic.
When you consider that your MC is going to be front and centre at your reception for around five hours and that they’re setting the tone of the night, is panic and stress really the vibe you want?
This is the thing: your best mate might be a great speaker or a charismatic storyteller, but is that when he is sober, or after he’s had a few drinks? Are you going to monitor your BFF’s intake at one of the best parties you’ll ever have together?
What’s their experience in planning events?
A buck’s weekend doesn’t count. How many weddings have they even been too? Will they be able to help you refine the run sheet for your wedding? (‘Wait, what goes into the run sheet?’)
Think you don’t need help with your run sheet? That your wedding coordinator will sort it out for you? Let me ask you another question: is your wedding coordinator going to be at the reception all night? It’s more likely they will hand it over to the venue manager who’s rostered on that night and who probably hasn’t had much, if anything, to do with the planning of your reception.
One of the best testimonials I ever received was from a couple who said I raised so many questions they hadn’t even thought of.
How does your friend work under pressure? How will they respond if things change, or if things go wrong?
One of the things I’m good at is knowing when I can be confident to make a decision without ‘bothering’ a couple around the detail – and knowing when I should consult.
Trust me, you don’t want someone who’s going to be in your ear the whole night asking you a million questions about stuff you’d rather they just handle. You may as well do the job yourself. (Don’t do this, it’s a terrible idea.)
Professional MCs are the epitome of ‘grace under fire’. You need someone who exudes calm even if everything is going belly up. Someone who will take a deep breath, and swiftly choose the best course of action. In the space of seconds. (I also have Advanced First Aid and CPR quals).
How are their people management skills? In my day job, I lead teams. Over the years, I’ve learned how to manage difficult people and situations. This has come in handy when I’ve had to manage other vendors who weren’t doing their job.
Ask me about the DJ who was high as a kite and kept disappearing, leaving us completely without music for not one but two periods.
I had to take control of that situation in a way that got the best possible outcome with the least amount of drama and very swiftly.
I’m not trying to make it sound like your wedding night is going to be a series of disasters – it’s not. But sometimes things go wrong. Sometimes things change. It might even be you who will want to change something on the fly. And, in times like these, it really does help to have a professional on hand.
Find the money. It will be one of the best investments for the longest part of your wedding day, which has the most number of moving parts.
The thing about being a Master of Ceremonies is that it is work. And, really, do you want your best mate feeling like they’ve just worked a full day at your wedding? Shouldn’t they be enjoying themselves with you two and the rest of your friends?
This is probably the single most compelling reason why you shouldn’t get a mate to MC your wedding.
In hiring a professional MC – you’ll have 100% confidence that all the details will be taken care of, and that you can all just focus on having the best day ever.