So you got asked to be the best man. Maybe it's your brother, a lifelong best friend, a college buddy—whoever he is, he obviously respects you. No matter how he asked you...
"Bro... be my best man?"
"Hey, I gotta ask somebody... might as well be you."
"You're my brother. You have to be my best man."
"There's no one in the world I'd rather have by my side except you."
...he asked you. And now, it's your opportunity to show him what that means to you.
Go with me on a journey to almost every wedding you've been to... Imagine the servers are filling up the glasses with champagne for guests... The DJ is announcing that it's time for toasts and the first one up is the Best Man. And look with me over to the bar where the best man's head shoots up, he laughs nervously and winks at the guys surrounding him. He barely makes his way to the microphone where he says the classic words,
"So... I didn't prepare for this at all!"
Here, most of his drunk friends laugh. Them and no one else. He then continues, "Well, you know I love you, bro. I wish the best to both of you!" He drops the mic, there's scattered applause, and the night moves on.
But what if that best man got up and gave a toast that guests were talking about for years to come? Those guests go to other weddings. It's toast time and they see classic drunk best man and they say to their friends, "This one wedding I went to had the best best man speech I've ever heard..." You could be that guy.
Three Rules For A Best Man Speech
To Be Remembered
1. This is about HIM not YOU
Is this your wedding? No. Is that girl in the white dress your bride? No. Is the family scattered throughout the room yours? Well, maybe—but they're not here for you. The guests have bought plane tickets, rented VRBO's, bought presents and dawned on their best attire to come and celebrate two people getting married. That's who we're going to focus on in your toast.
When you're picking out anecdotes for your speech, pick ones that showcase the groom, not you. If you're going to include yourself in a story (i.e. you broke your leg as a kid and that summer the groom spent every day with you instead of going out and spending time doing summer activities), make sure it's promoting the groom's good qualities, not your own.
2. This is a TOAST not a ROAST
A best man speech is one man vouching for another's character. The anecdotes you choose should showcase the groom's integrity, honor, hard work, humor, loyalty, friendship, etc. This isn't a comedy club: you don't need to tell every embarrassing story you can think of about the groom. In fact, sharing embarrassing stories is a cop out for best man speeches. This isn't about making the audience laugh at the expense of the groom. It's about honoring him.
This is an incredibly special and memorable day for your groom. He can look back on the day and remember his best man told some stupid story about a mistake he made in college, or he can remember a day he felt appreciated, esteemed, and honored before his friends and family.
3. Share EMOTIONS
I know, I know. A woman is telling a man to show emotion—what else is new? But this is important. Need I say it again?— This is about him, not you. Showing him that you care enough about him to show emotions in front of others will mean a lot to him.
Talk about how this man has impacted your life, share the ways your life has been enriched since having him in it, express your ingratitude towards him. You don't always share how you feel, but today... his wedding day... you should.
In conclusion, you want a toast that will warm the audience, get the bride even more excited about her new man, and honor the guy who has called you his best man. Go by these three rules and you're on your way there.
If these were helpful hints, but you are looking for someone to help organize your thoughts, sort through your anecdotes, write a killer opening and closing, and give you helpful hints for public speaking, contact me at mountainwordsmith.com. I would love to work with you.