Natural public speaker or not, there comes a time in all of our lives when it’s time to clink that knife against the glass, gather everyone’s attention, and toast to one of our loved ones tying the knot. But crafting that speech can be stressful, especially when sorting through all your many memories and deciding on content.
Before you get stressed about what you’re going to say, Dallas is one of many cities that is home to Toastmasters International, a nonprofit educational organization that teaches public speaking and leadership skills through a network of clubs. No need to join (although we definitely encourage you to), because we sat down with Sam Ogbonna, president of The Crescent Toastmasters Club to get the scoop on how to give a memorable wedding toast.
Keep it Personal
Always make the toast about the couple; do not focus on yourself. When giving a toast, try sharing a story that highlights why the couple has such an amazing bond.
Your toast should have an introduction, body, and conclusion.
Humor is great to use, but don’t abuse it. Avoid anything distasteful and offensive.
You may have your message down in your head but somehow deliver a completely different one. Rehearsing your message will allow a better flow of speech.
Keep it Short
Your toast should not be longer than three minutes.
Initiating the Toast
Toastmasters has an official way to begin the toast. You will start by standing, lifting your glass by the stem and saying, “I’d like to propose a toast.” Pause to allow guests to shift attention toward you and give them time to lift their glasses. When you start speaking, lower your glass to waist level.
The toast sets the tone for the wedding, so make sure you speak with poise. If you want to have with more confidence, practice delivering your message.