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Wedding Speech Tips: common mistakes to avoid

Posted At : October 14, 2008 5:21 PM   |  Posted By : Bridal Network   |  Views: 5,808
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Three wedding speech actions to avoid or eliminate

Story by Wedding Speeches Online

Time to make that most important speech. What a day to look forward to! Being asked to speak at a wedding is an honour, a privilege and a pleasure. But, it also can be a little nerve-racking. Whether you're the groom, best man, father of the bride or bride, making a speech can have the correct impact with some well-chosen advice, a little help and thought.

What's so important about a wedding speech?

A wedding speech is often very personal and its content has to be appropriate to the person being acknowledged. When it is on a day that a number of people will remember for the rest of their lives- it takes on a new significance.

What should you do to ensure your speech is well received?

There is plenty of advice and suggestions in books and on the Internet about how a speech should be written and delivered. There are also a couple of things, which you should consider avoiding.

  1. Don't embarrass the bride, the groom, or any of the guests.

    Why is this important? It's the bride's big day and everything should be aimed at making it memorable for the right reasons.

    A speaker may be tempted to get carried away and push a few boundaries. Of course weddings should be happy and joyful occasions with plenty of humour and laughter, but if things are pushed too far the speaker may end up regretting it.

    "If in doubt, leave it out". Avoid anything in dubious taste. The point of a speech is too entertain, not to shock or offend. Some things are best left in the past, or are suited to another forum.

    Thinking of your audience is so important when it comes to weddings. Guests can include children, people of different ages and backgrounds, people who are friends and people who have never met each other before. Very rarely do speakers know everybody present. Even though sometimes adults find certain jokes and assertions funny and certain language acceptable they may disapprove because of others present. A good idea if there is any doubt, is to get someone else to check your speech for double meanings and acceptability.

    If a bride can look back on her wedding day and say " This was the most perfect day of my life. Everything went amazingly well. I wouldn't change a thing.", then everybody involved including those making a speech or toast can be congratulated.

  2. Don't wing it.

    Weddings are very special occasions, which in most cases require a large amount of planning and input from a variety of people. If you are asked or required to speak the effort should be similar to that put into other parts of the ceremony. If you spend some time perfecting what you will say and how you will say it then you will give both yourself and the guests an opportunity to really enjoy this part of the day.

    Adequate time spent on preparation has a number of other benefits

    • Avoids any last minute rush
    • Gives you opportunity to perfect your speech
    • Helps you to improve timing and pace
    • Gives you an opportunity to include what you want.
    • Helps you remember things and thus you are able to deliver in your own natural style.
    • Helps your confidence
    • Enables you to use the best type of notes that you need for your delivery. Eg Cards, A4.
    • Enables you to test any material prior to using it.
    • Helps you develop any part of your speech, which you may be having difficulty with.
    • Helps you become familiar with your speech.
    • Allows you to seek the help or comments of others..
    • Help you solve any issues with the flow of your speech
    • Helps you become aware and able to fix or improve any body language issues
    • Allows you to practice your delivery.

  3. Keep it relevant and don't ramble.

    There is nothing worse than listening to a speaker who "goes on and on" about things that are inconsequential or are not relevant to the person they are talking about. With your wedding speech a good start is to find out what the purpose of your speech is and any expectations of the Bride and Groom. Your speech can then be built around any expectations and the purpose e.g. the father of the brides speech should include words about his daughter and a welcome to his new son in law

    Some speakers overload their speeches with jokes and stories and lose sight of the true purpose of their speech or toast. While humour plays a major part in most wedding speeches, true stories are best and speakers should always endeavour to get a balance of sincerity, real life stories and humour.

    How long should you speak for? I suggest 3-5 minutes with a maximum of 7 minutes. This is a general rule and often other factors have to be considered. Unfortunately I have personally been to a wedding where a number of people spoke {this was fine.} However two of them spoke for a length of time about family and events, which had little relevance to the marriage, that had just taken place. This resulted in the last two speakers giving really short toasts to speed up the proceedings.

Lets ensure your speech "hits the mark" and is great to listen to.

Writing your own speech but still need professional help? Check out weddingspeeches.co.nz

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