How to Do a Farewell Speech

Updated March 27, 2017

You can give farewell speeches for different occasions, usually when someone is leaving a hometown or retiring from a job. Some farewell speeches honour the person who is leaving; other times, the departing person gives the farewell speech himself. In either situation, the speech should be an emotional tribute and appreciative in tone. A good speech often begins with an interesting opener like a memorable quote or a joke. Practice your speech before you deliver it.

Start your speech with an introduction. Explain who you are in case someone doesn't know you, and state that you are giving your farewell.

Move to the body of your speech and add more details. Since it is a farewell speech, include what you have learnt while working at the company or attending the school.

Express your appreciation for the experience. Mention specific names of mentors, former bosses or other people that have taught you lessons.

Discuss your next challenge, if appropriate. For instance, if you are leaving to start a family, talk about how your experience has prepared you for your next chapter.

Add a story or anecdote about your time at the organisation. You can tell the story at the beginning to capture the audience's attention or conclude with the memory.

Provide encouraging words. Your farewell speech should stay positive and be inspirational to your former co-workers.

Write key parts of your speech on note cards in case you forget what you are saying. Practice reading your entire speech out loud a few times before you have to deliver it.

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About the Author

Ireland Wolfe has been writing professionally since 2009, contributing to Toonari Post, Africana Online and Winzer Insurance. She obtained her Bachelor of Arts in psychology and Master of Arts in mental health counseling. She is also a licensed mental health counselor, registered nutritionist and yoga teacher.