A bad phone connection can ruin the best conversation. You catch a few words here and there, offer some non-committal affirmations, but you’re basically missing 80% of what the other party is saying.
That’s what your audience feels like when there’s a sound issue. While your exec may be breaking down the tactics to crushing the competition in 2014, your audience is shaking their heads muttering, “I have no idea what he’s saying,” or “she sounds weird. I had no idea her voice was so thin.”
So how can you make sure the audience hears what the speaker is saying?
- Hire a pro for your sound board.
It may not sound like rocket science, but mixing sound is a definite skill. These audio professionals can make or break a meeting. So spend the time to communicate the agenda, stage flow, and speaker presentation styles to them before your event, preferably before or during your rehearsal. It’s not something you want to leave to chance. And nothing ruins the vibe of a good meeting faster than a screech, pop or – gasp – silence.
- Get the right equipment.
Every room is different, which means that the audio package that worked for your last meeting may not be right in a new setting. Depending on the size of the audience, the number of speakers and the type of presentation, you may need a larger – or smaller – configuration. The worst way to approach this decision is with your budget glasses on. Be aware of costs, but also keep in mind that cheap equipment will give you a cheap-sounding meeting. And after all of the hard work that has gone into putting the meeting together, is that really the result that you want? Instead, work with your producer to choose the best equipment you can afford that still meets your needs.
Worrying about quality audio for your next meeting shouldn’t keep you up at night. But it is something that you – and your production team – should have on your radar. By putting some forethought into your onsite needs and event agenda, you can rest a little easier knowing you have the right equipment and people to make sure those speeches your presenters have been meticulously crafting will actually be heard.