You could find lots of retirement speech examples on different sites on the internet, but the best speech is always the one that you write yourself. For your talk to have the best impact, it should come from your heart and talk about who you are and what you feel about the company and your career in it. You could use a few tips and ideas about what you can talk about, but design your speech yourself. As long as it is short and includes all the people in your audience, your speech will be fondly remembered by your coworkers and family members present at the dinner.
Even so, if you’re looking for an idea of how to craft your retirement speech, here are some important points to include:
Key Points - Retirement Speech Examples
The best retirement speech examples follow a formula such as:
- Opening- 60 seconds humor, poem, quote or acknowledgement of host
- Heartfelt conveyance of thanks
- Story from early in career
- What you learned during your career
- Summary of your future plans/endeavors
- Well wishes to your colleagues for the future
Begin your speech with an introduction that can be either a retirement saying or quote or a simple “Thank You” to the person introducing you. Or, you may want to recite a retirement poem which could be touching or humorous. Choose whichever suits your personality.
Next, create cue cards with some pointers like an interesting anecdote, milestones the company has seen during your tenure, and your gratefulness to the people who helped you along your career. These people include your coworkers and family. Finish with a brief overview of your plans for the future and a nice conclusion.
Read this sample retirement speech that includes all the important aspects.
Retirement Speech Example
[Mr/Ms. XXX] has just said some wonderful things about me, but I hadn’t really realized I have been such an important part of this company. I’m hoping [he/she] really meant it and is not just trying to make me feel good about retiring. [Pause for the laughter to settle.]
Like George Burns once said, “Retirement at sixty-five is ridiculous. When I was sixty-five - I still had pimples.” Well, that’s not exactly true (I have great skin). [Another pause here.] What I think he meant to say was that reaching 65 and retiring is only the beginning of all the great things you still have to get done. Perhaps, more interesting than all that I did in my career. I have had a good long 30 years in this company and I still remember the first few weeks of finding my feet.
[Mr/Ms. XXX], the person who hired me was wonderfully patient and when I look back at all the blunders I made, I’m pretty sure I would have fired me. But [he/she] didn’t. And, helped me learn my role in the company. Above all [he/she] inspired me and was able to tap the potential I didn’t know I had. I give complete credit to [Mr/Ms. XXX] for molding me into what I am today.
I remember the time when we first moved into the new offices at [Location]. We had just begun computerizing our operations and in the bustle of the move, my team and I managed to leave behind the main CPU. We did manage to get it back, but I’ll never forget the sheepish looks we were exchanging when we were tried to set up the computer and realized the CPU was missing. [Another pause here.]
I would like to say that I have been so successful because of the highly efficient people that have been working with me and helping me along. My sincere thanks to all of you. I’d also like to let you all in on an important secret I learned along the way. When I started working, I had these grandiose rules about how every project and task should be handled. Needless to say, I soon saw that sometimes allowing some leeway in the rules is really not a bad thing. And, projects can progress perfectly well even if you allow for deviations from the original plan.
Talking about rules, I would like to ask my kids sitting there [Smile and wave to them.] to forgive me for being hard on them as a parent. I suppose it was probably me trying to make up for the long hours I worked. But, I promise to break all those parenting rules with your kids when you bring them for sleepovers.
To my [lovely wife/darling husband] thank you for standing firmly beside me through all my grumpiness and cranky moods when I was working on reports. I love you! [Smile to your spouse.] I promise not to break the habit and continue being the person you’ve become so used to. [Another pause here.] A retired husband is often a wife's full-time job. That’s another quote I’ve heard. I think I will live up to it and give you all my time.
I have loved my time here (despite those reports), and I think I will miss the excitement of planning new projects, working out details, and executing them to completion. But, I have a few projects up my sleeve, and since I intend to travel a little, I think I will be able to keep that excitement going.
On that note, I would like to thank you all for your retirement wishes and for being here for me tonight. I’m truly honored, touched, and I feel so valued. Let me also extend my heartiest Congratulations to [Mr/Ms. XXX] who’s going to be taking my place. You’re going to enjoy every moment of your time in this company. I know I have.
Yes, I’m not going to keep you any longer. I am nearly done here. [Another pause here.]
Thank you, and Goodnight!!
This is just one of many retirement speech examples that is concise, relevant and is directed at all the members of your audience. Having prepared your retirement talk, be sure to rehearse it well and time yourself reading it. The perfect talk should not take more than 10 to 15 minutes. And make sure your tone is cheerful and positive. All these tips should help you deliver the perfect retirement dinner speech. Good Luck!!