Retirement speeches and
toasts can be funny
or touching. People use
the occasion of a retirement party to recognize
the retiree’s work or personality. If you are the main speaker, your
tribute should include humor as well as testimonials about the
character or contributions to the organization.
main retirement speech
If you are honoring the retiree, you'll want your speech or
toast to be entertaining and touching. Open your
speech with a general greeting, a quote or funny
story about the honoree. Since retirement parties are walks
lane, most of your speech should include recollections of what the
has meant to the organization.
Conclude with something
serious or funny but be sure to mention how much the person
has contributed or will be missed. If
you’re a pro, you’ll end your speech with a conclusion that ties back
opening remarks. Hard to do but that is always a winning formula.
Over-the-hill remarks or nursing home jokes that were
hilarious at a 40th birthday party may not be so
amusing now. Most
retirement parties include
members of the family,
some of whom may be elderly. A
safe option is to focus
on funny things that happened to the person
work or earlier in his or her life.
the person is healthy, active and
looking forward to
leaving work, it’s appropriate for the retirement speech to
include some light remarks about a
laid-back future enjoying hobbies. But if you’re not sure of
person’s situation, focus on his or her past and role with the
There are a variety of retirement sayings or quotesyou can use but be careful. In all
about a toothless, drooling, impotent future that, while
intended to be funny, may embarrass others or make
Sample retirement speech
following sample honors Joe Smith who is retiring after
working at XYZ Insurance in Dubuque
for 15 years. You can adapt this formula for retirement wishes with
details for about your honored guest and using
some of the retirement sayings on this website.
that this is longer than a
typical retirement toast which should last only a minute or two.
with general greeting and recognition of any special guests. You will
want to recognize family members of the honoree as you begin.
story about the retiree and his work habits. The story should relate in
some positive way to others in the organization.
comments about the retiree's role in the overall organization.
stories about his work or experiences others had in working with the
that other people will also be sharing stories or giving toasts.
overall comments restating how the honored guest has influenced the
organization or his work area.
in some lighter comments to say how much the person will be missed but
how happy everyone is for the retiree as he or she embarks on a new
some comments that refer back to one of your stories.
people to applaud the retiree and close family members. Others should
then share their own toasts.
Today is Joe
Smith’s day. Look at all the people who have
come to honor him and say farewell.
didn’t know did you, Joe, that so many people would be
celebrating your departure!
Joe has been an anchor in our marketing
department for the past 15 years. He was one of the first ones in every
would watch these Gen X’ers and Y’ers come dragging in an hour after
finished his second cup of coffee. And he’d always have something
Sometimes it was
irritatingly cheerful for those of us who are night owls. (How could
smile that broadly just after daybreak?)
definitely not like those people who come in late but
make up for it by leaving early.
was always here, grinning from ear to ear. I asked him
one time why he was always so happy and Joe told me, “You might as well
because you’re here anyway and there’s no point in bringing anybody
That is a remark I
always associate with Joe. And far from
bringing anybody down, Joe has held up XYZ Insurance and kept the
team on a steady course for years.
He may have been
smiling all the time and he is able to
laugh at himself. Joe has also provided the rest of us with some funny
Remember that time
when his team developed the campaign with
the talking locks? The slogan of that campaign was, “XYZ makes every
safe house.” This was Joe’s brainchild and his bright idea to the idea
show everybody how we were the one property insurance company that
every house a safe house.
The slogan – Let
XYZ Insurance put you in a safe house today
and tomorrow – was a great success until it was abrubtly ended. That
same time, as you recall, that the Dubuque
police launched a raid on a prostitution ring that covered five states
headquartered in a safe house here in Dubuque.
Suddenly Joe’s idea
of pitching XYZ as the backer of the
safe house didn’t seem to fit.
We all had fun
ribbing Job about his safe house campaign.
Looking back over
Joe’s career with XYZ Insurance, we all
have stories about special times with him. Others will mention some of
a few minutes.
To Joe, I want to
say how much we admire your dedication to your
colleagues and this company. When Joe arrived at XYZ, this was a small
with just 10 employees but with a vision of customer service that would
transform us into a major player in this market. And Joe has been an
part of our growth and prosperity.
It’s the people
like Joe, who come into work with a smile,
make our clients happy and understand that we always have to keep
improving our service …those people like Joe are the ones who have made
Insurance the success it is today.
It’s impossible to
measure what Joe has meant to XYZ
Insurance all these years. And I know I speak for everyone when I say
this is a
bittersweet moment….saying goodbye to a friend and coworker who has
much. But we are all happy that Joe and Laura will have time to kick
new dreams and enjoy their grandchildren.
We’re now at the
point in a retirement party when someone
presents the retiree with a watch. That’s a tradition I have never
When someone retires and he no longer has to leave the house by 7,
making that 8:30 meeting and see that afternoon deadline getting
time is no longer a matter of urgent importance…why do his colleagues
him with a watch?
We don’t have a
watch for you Joe, but we do have some
memories we’d like to share.
It is obvious from
all these people gathered here that you
will be missed. We wish you and Laura all the best and know that your
will be even broader now that you don’t have to take that commute into
we know that if the Dubuque
police ever break up another safe house, we’ll have them call you
you’ll know what to say.
Joe and Laura,
would you please stand so we can say thanks.