You are here: HOME › How to write a thank you speech
A thank you speech or appreciation speech prepared and given with sincerity means so much to those you acknowledge.
'No man is an island'
When we achieve, we usually do so because others have helped. Your speech of appreciation is the gift you give in return for what was given you.
Generally this type of speech is not spontaneous. You will have some forewarning and time to consider what you want to say and who you want to mention.
Although the occasions may vary hugely, for example:
Cover these three content areas and you'll be fine.
Thanks but no thanks! What I really want is a ...
Choose a theme.
Now that you've sorted out who you wish to mention and what for, you are ready to write your thank you speech.
Like any other form of speech you need 3 parts:- an opening, the body or middle where you put all your acknowledgments, and a conclusion.
the size of your people to thank/appreciate list and the amount of time you have, do
include a small story about the lead-up making this event possible. Stories
always go down well because they let people in to share your experience more
Check out this page on story telling in speeches.
Example: "To Alex, Mary, Judy and Sam, thank you for making me remember to laugh. You helped me keep my sanity and perspective when the going was tough."
Before you finalize the content, check out these 'thank you quotations'.
They offer different ways of expressing your gratitude. You could find just what you need to spark your creativity and provide the thread/theme to unite your speech. It can be so much more than a long string of thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you ...
And a reminder that may sound a bit stuffy or even 'old-school'
- your thank you speech really does need to focus on the positives as well as being
This not the place to air unresolved grievances, to make remarks or tell in-jokes that are only understood by a few.
Giving yourself several rehearsals, firstly by yourself and then in front of friends or family, will help you get it right.
Time yourself as you say your appreciation speech out loud at a normal speaking rate.
If it's too long, look for areas you can cut. Maybe you need to group a few more people together or perhaps you need to shorten some of the specific examples about why it is you're thanking someone.
If it's too short, add more detail. Repeat until you get the timing right.
Write the main points of your thank you speech on cue cards.
(If you don't know about using or how to make cue cards find out here.)
To ensure you don't miss anyone out note, in order, each person's name and the reason you're thanking them.
Practice your speech in front of a mirror and then in front of someone whose judgment you trust.
Ask for feedback on whether or not you've included everybody you should, how the
speech links together, how your delivery could be improved.
Being well prepared will give you confidence.
One thanking your colleagues for a job well done?
Here's a cracker (a good one) to use as a template. It's utterly adaptable. Takes bits out, flick bits in ... until you have it sorted. Get thee pronto to business thank you speech.
Perhaps you'd like to know how to stop your knees from knocking when you stand to speak or maybe you'd like a few suggestions to slowing a racing speech rate?
You'll find effective public speaking tips to help with that and a whole lot more here.
Giving your speech should be fun. Enjoy it!