Giving A Toast

WRITTEN April 12, 2018 Author: Jen Glantz

The act of giving a toast, whether at an event, a party, or a wedding, is an honor.

While it may seem simple to grab the microphone and talk in front of a room filled with people, some of whom you know very well and others very little, it can require a bit of work.

Memorable toasts stand out for a few reasons. First, they engage the entire audience, not just the person that’s being “toasted”; second, they are clear and concise; and finally, they include just the right amount of personal details that make it anything but generic.

Here are four tips to use when preparing for giving a toast:


Keep it Short

The best toasts are the ones that are short and sweet. Time your speech, adding in pauses for audience engagement. Keep your speech under five minutes, unless you believe it’s appropriate to speak for longer, or the host has asked you to speak for a certain amount of time.

Skip the Inside Jokes

A toast, whether at a wedding or a good friend’s birthday party, is usually done in front of an audience of people. Leave out any inside jokes that the majority of ears listening won’t understand. Cater the speech to everyone in the room, while also making it personal to whomever it’s directed.

End with Well Wishes

Your toast should grow to a point. Before you guide the audience to raise their glass, give the person you are toasting well wishes, hopes for the future, and a line or two about why you appreciate them so much.

Practice, Practice, Practice

The key to giving a powerful toast is making it sound conversational and personable. Practice your speech, several times, out loud before the event. Become familiar enough with the material that you don’t have to look at a piece of paper throughout the entire toast.


Giving a toast is a great honor, but it does take a good amount of work to put together. Remember to speak to your audience, keep it short and sweet, and practice, so that your personality can shine through with every word, joke, and well wish.

This content is a part of our Public Speaking curriculum. If you’re looking for ways to improve your communication skills, register for one of our public classes.


Image by Kevin Dooley


Other Resources:


How to Give an Awesome Toast

Giving A Quality Toast is Easier Than You Think

How to Give an Elegant, Unforgettable Toast

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