Out of everything I’ve written over the years, my most popular article has easily been The Ultimate Guide to Writing a Best Man’s Speech from 2013.
This year I was lucky enough to be asked to be a Best Man for the second time and, of course, give a speech at the wedding. Naturally, I re-read my own advice and luckily the preparation all went smoothly – including organising the Stag Do – and the day itself was a great success.
I won’t go over the whole article again but here’s the three most crucial things that I found from it to ensure a great speech:
- Proper preparation. Write far more than you need to. Just in bite-sized chunks – anecdotes / short jokes / one-liners / sentimental bits, everything you can think of – then edit it down to get rid of the poorer parts. Better a shorter, funnier speech, than an average long one.
- Structure. When editing try to find an overall arc for the narrative. For this speech my stories were pretty much chronological, giving short insights into the Groom’s life over the years. Try to find a structure and rhythm, a running gag or something that links it all together naturally – it works so much better with the audience.
- Learn it off by heart. Not only will it calm your nerves on the day, but your speech will come across so much more naturally, and you’ll hopefully be able to ad-lib where necessary and deliver directly to the audience rather than staring downwards at a sheet of paper.
While we are on the subject – during my research I came across this incredibly well written and hilarious Best Man’s Speech by Jonathan Bonner – easily the best of any I’ve seen and really worth a watch.