retirement party toast is not a speech. It should be short, but with some humor
or an anecdote. How and when to propose a toast will be discussed.
The retirement party toast should be the highlight of the party. The retiree will remember it forever. Although it is short, there should be adequate preparation to make it special.
By definition, a toast is usually 2 or 3 sentences, ending with everyone drinking a beverage or water in honor of the retiree. Prior to the toast, make sure that everyone has a glass with a beverage. For this reason, the best time to make the toast is during the dessert portion of the dinner.
While holding his glass at the waist the "toaster" asks for the attention of the audience by saying, "May I have your attention?" If after several attempts that does not get everyone's attention, he or she may click a utensil on a glass.
Since the toast is short, it must be memorized. This will
allow the person giving the toast to maintain eye contact with the audience and
the retiree. (Please, do not
See Retirement Toasts for other "Do's and Don'ts".
The "toaster" must project his or her voice so that everyone can hear it. And remember to speak slowly enunciating clearly as there may be considerable noise in the room. The audience, of course, is hearing this for the first time, as is the guest of honor.
At the end of the toast, the "toaster" raises his glass in the direction of the retiree and drinks first - leading the other guests.
Usually the host or hostess will propose the first toast. The "main toaster" should be last.
The "toastee" does not drink to his or herself, but acknowledges the toast with a simple "Thank You". It would be appropriate for the "toastee" to propose a toast to the host or hostess.
The first part of the toast is to name the guest of honor.
This will not only get his or her attention, but it will let everyone present know
what is about to happen. For example, "This
is to toast Dave who has ...".
There are many options when giving a toast. I will list some examples. But, first let me tell you that the toast consists of two parts. The first is a message about the retiree. The second is a statement that everyone agrees with.
"This is to toast Dave, my colleague and friend. He is responsible for many innovations and contributions at our company. He has been a remarkable leader with many expertise as well as an impressive work ethic. I truly hope that retirement brings him happiness and good fortune. Let's raise our glasses in honor of Dave."
Other options are to tell a brief anecdote about Dave and explain why he will be missed. It could be that Dave greeted people a certain way or he brought coffee each morning for the secretary. We all are unique (Dave must be also). The toast is usually more memorable if it involves some humor.
Here are some words to use in a toast (other than those found in the above example): "fortunate to have the privilege, commitment, legacy, visionary, leader".
If you are caught off guard and are asked to give a toast, you can say: "To Dave, a terrific guy and a friend to all of us." ...or something similar.
May you taste the sweetest pleasures that fortune ere bestowed,
and may all your friends remember all the favors you are owed.
May your neighbors respect you,
Dance as if no one were watching,
Here's to the man who is wisest and best
Here's to the man who with judgment is blest,
Here's to the man who's as smart as can be –
I drink to the man who agrees with me!
(separate lines with which to end a toast)
"May your home always be too small to hold all your friends."
"May the good Lord take a liking to you - but not too soon!"
"May you be in heaven a full half-hour before the devil knows you're dead."
"May you live as long as you want and never want as long as you live."
"May we always part with regret and meet again with pleasure."
"Here's to your health and your family's health. May you live long and prosper."
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