Cheers! We all love to toast; to love, health, friendship, happiness and many more. Over the years people have practiced toasting and people still continue to toast at functions even today. Sometimes making a toast is not the problem, the problem comes when we have no idea when to make a toast or how to go about it.
Toasts are the simplest ways of making a moment feel quite special. It is a gracious gesture that can be delivered by just about anyone. All you have to do is have a little forethought and some knowledge of the toasting etiquette and/or protocol.
The one proposing a toast:
If you are the one proposing a toast, here are a few protocols you can follow:
Make an appropriate toast
Proposing a toast is always a kind gesture, but proposing a toast to the wrong audience can mess up an otherwise jovial function. Make sure that you are witty in your toast and what you say to accompany the toast is in line with the kind of function you are in.
Make it short and simple
Most toasts are usually done in the middle of some other activity, especially when guests are eating. Be sure to keep your toast short and simple. You don’t want to bore people by using too many words to explain a simple thought. Also avoid ambiguity; using simple words makes your toast look more sincere.
Make sure you are prepared
Any good orator will tell you that a good toast is a speech in miniature. It actually takes a lot of time to craft a short message than a long speech. It is not a bad idea to do a little practice to sound spontaneous. If you have to quote someone’s words, be sure you get the entire context right so that you don’t leave your audience confused.
Clearly define your ending
Once you are done with the speech, make sure you give a clear ending to it so that your audience can know when the toast has ended. Most of the time the person proposing the toast usually ends by saying cheers and asking the audience to raise their glasses for a toast. There are other acceptable gestures that can be used as well.
Always stand when making a toast
Standing up when proposing a toast will help you get the attention of the audience you want to address. However, you can decide not to stand if the group you are addressing is a small informal one like a family gathering.
The one receiving a toast
If you are the one on the receiving end, the following is the protocol you should follow:
Never drink to a toast
When the toast is offered to you, you should not lift up your glass and toast like the rest are doing. You only have to sit down and smile to acknowledge the toast.
Say thanks for the gesture
Once the toast is done and the person making the toast has taken their seat, you can then stand up and thank the person for the gesture. This is the time you can lift your glass too, and drink from it as a sign of appreciation.
Above all else:
Never force someone to make a toast
Making a toast is solely a voluntary activity. At no point should someone be forced to make a toast if they don’t want to. However, if you have been requested to make a toast and you are up to it, you can go ahead and make it.
Never refuse to perform in a toast
It is usually polite and acceptable to participate in a toast. Even if you do not feel like it, as long as you are in the function, be sure to participate even if it means raising an empty glass to toast.
There you have it. Go ahead and make a toast to celebrate that new job, new birth, good times and any other function that would be better with a toast!