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7 Tips for a Great Holiday Toast

A holiday toast is a great way to add a touch of class to a holiday gathering and leave a favorable impression with attendees. Here are some public spoeaking tips to make sure your toast is delivered well.

  • A toast can be the official beginning of an event. Wait until it appears most guests have arrived and then deliver your toast. Start by welcoming everyone.
  • Introduce yourself. Don’t assume everyone knows who you are. Even those who have met you before may have forgotten. If you’re not the host, consider explaining how you know the host or why you are the one delivering the toast.
  • Meet audience expectations. As in all aspects of public speaking, it’s always about your audience. Be warm and be sincere.
  • Avoid canned humor. Canned jokes are known as groaners for a reason. If a groan is the best you can hope for, is it a good idea? Instea, recognize the potential for spontaneous humor.
  • Be accurate. Make sure you’ve got your information correct. If you’re mentioning names, make sure you’re pronouncing them accurately. Mistakes can kill your credibility.
  • Be brief. Don’t have people waiting with a glass in their hand for too long. If you tell a story, make sure it’s short and that there’s a clear point to it.
  • Make the actual raising of the glass special. Consider asking everyone to stand to ensure you have their attention. Don’t shortchange the toast with a cliché like “down the hatch.” This is an opportunity to make a personal connection. Toasts usually end with a positive look to the future.

Here’s hoping these tips help you put together a great holiday toast!

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