A welcome speech is delivered to mark the beginning of any special event or occasion or to welcome a person into an organization. The purpose of a welcome speech could be many- it could be delivered to welcome the guests at the opening of an office, hotel, function, etc, it is also delivered to welcome the chief guest of an occasion or to welcome a new employee, etc. The bottom line is that a welcome speech is delivered to welcome any person or occasion like- guests, events, chief guests, employees, opening ceremonies as the occasion demands.
By going through this article you will be able to know about what is a Welcome, how to write an effective welcome speech, how to be prepared and have much confidence, characteristics of a gracious welcome speech, and how to start a welcome speech.
What is a Welcome?
A welcome is an instance or manner to greet someone and a welcome speech does the same. It is a gesture to greet the arrival of guest/s on various occasions or places. The regular welcome could be just an exchange of greetings or could also be in the form of some gestures. For Ex- visitors to an amusement park are welcomed at the main gate by employees dressed up in different costumes and waving at them, customers in an eatery are welcomed by the polite smile of the manager saying ‘welcome’, airlines staff welcome the passengers with a folded hands, etc.
How To Write An Effective Welcome Speech?
A welcome speech might be given on a variety of events like- the opening of a new school, office, hotel or any commercial or public place; where there is a need to welcome the guests, informing them about the occasion and its purpose. Welcome speech conveys the message that how important the guests are to you and to your cause as well.
Now, to write an effective welcome speech you must know the sentiments of your subject as well as the sentiments of your audience. A welcome speech can also be broken up into three parts- introduction, main body, and conclusion, like the farewell speech.
Below given is an explanation on how to write an effective welcome speech, to help you prepare a speech for events at your school and society. After going through the content you will be able to write an effective welcome speech and earn accolades by your family and friends-
The Introduction of a Welcome speech can be divided into two parts as described below-
The first rule of a welcome speech is to welcome the audience first. Start your speech with- ‘Good evening ladies and gentlemen, hi everybody, etc. If you are speaking on the opening ceremony of hotel, office, hospital, etc, then the audience is also your guest and must be welcomed. Next, if there is a chief guest of the occasion then he or she must be welcomed and introduced to the audience. You may ask the audience to greet the chief guest by a big round of applause. You may include phrases like- “audience please welcome Mr. X by a huge round of applause or “we are thankful to Mr. X for joining us today” etc.
The Introduction of your welcome speech should be short and effective welcoming the audience and the subject, thanking them both for their time and presence.
II Main Body of the Speech
This is the main part of the speech, where the audience gets to know the purpose of the event and is informed more about the subject. If the reason for the event is opening a house, office or any commercial establishment, then the audience is informed about the purpose of it and how both are mutually beneficial to each other. Whatever the purpose it has to serve, a welcome speech must have the following characteristics-
1) Polite and Humble
The speech should be conducted in a polite and humble manner. Whatever you write in your speech or say, must be pleasing to the ears and sound generous.
2) True Facts and Figures
The facts that you present to your audience about the chief guest or the reason for the event, must be true to the core. Any exaggeration of any person, place or thing must be avoided at all costs.
3) Inform The Chief Guest
The Chief Guest is also informed about the purpose of the event and is introduced to other dignitaries present and other distinguished personalities. Inform the chief guest personally about the event and its purpose.
4) Introduce more
Let the audience know the event, purpose, occasion, chief guest- the more you inform your audience the more effective the speech will be. If it is a special guest for whom you are giving the speech, then inform the audience about his/her achievements, the distinctions they hold in the society and how grateful we all are to him/her for taking their precious time for the occasion.
5) Add some humor
If you have a humorous incident or event in mind, which fits in the occasion and is appropriate- go ahead! Adding a little humor will make the situation lighter and more rememberable.
How to be Prepared and have Much Confidence?
The following points must be stressed upon in order to prepare oneself for a farewell speech. They include some effective ways that you could use to deliver your farewell speech. After going through it you will know how to prepare for an effective Farewell speech as well as how to have much confidence-
- Know your audience and chief guest advance.
- Understand the purpose of the event.
- Gather information about the chief guest from other sources.
- Know his status, achievements and capacities, and capabilities.
- Prepare an effective welcome speech.
- Make the speech concise and compact by removing unnecessary sentences.
- Rehearse the speech in a loud voice, better if in front of a mirror.
- Rehearse using appropriate gestures as you would do in actual speech.
- Ask your parents or friends to be the audience/chief guest and rehearse in front of them.
- Work on the feedback given by your family and friends and work on your weak points.
- Arrive at the event before time.
- Make yourself comfortable with your surroundings.
- Socialize and speak your heart out before the speech.
- Put more emphasis on your facial expressions i.e. smile only when it’s required.
- Feel confident or at least pretend to be confident even if you are nervous. Nobody can guess unless you show your nervousness.
- Make direct eye contact with your audience and the chief guest.
- Add some last moment incident or a joke if it fits well.
- Don’t fight your fear, just ignore it. Fighting is a waste of time.
If you are getting nervous then going through the following lines will surely boost up your confidence-
- Even experienced speakers get nervous at some point in time.
- They don’t know it, so don’t show it.
- The audience or the other dignitaries are listening to you, not judging you.
Nervousness has a habit of revealing itself through the following-
1) Through your eyes
Avoiding direct eye contact with the audiences or the chief guests shows that you are nervous. So, don’t hesitate to make direct eye contact.
2) Through facial gestures
Avoid unnecessary facial gestures, especially smiles. Smiling without reason is an indication of your nervousness. Smile only when necessary.
3) Through Unwanted Hand Gestures
Avoid unnecessary gestures and use only appropriate hand gestures.
Characteristics of a Gracious Welcome Speech
A gracious fare welcome speech must have the following characteristics.
1) Be polite and courteous
2) Welcome, all the guests and dignitaries with enthusiasm.
3) Introduce the dignitaries to the audiences.
4) Share the distinct qualities of the chief guest with the audience.
5) A little humor would be great if it fits on the occasion.
6) Make everyone present feel special
7) Rightly time your speech. Not too short neither too long.
8) Use appropriate hand and facial gestures, only if required.
9) Narrate the qualities and achievements of the chief guest to the audience
10) Acknowledge your audience and dignitaries for their time and presence.
11) Once again thank the audience and chief guest present.
12) Introduce the next speaker to the audience.
How To Start A Welcome Speech?
A great welcome speech is started by welcoming the Greeting audience and the chief guest of the occasion. The chief guest and the other dignitaries present must be welcomed individually by calling out their respective names and designations.
Below we are providing a few opening sentences for your welcome speech on events in your schools and colleges-
First Welcome the Audience
The audience present at the venue must be welcomed, using the phrases like-
- Good evening ladies and gentlemen, I/we thank you all for your presence and time.
- Good evening ladies and gentlemen, it is a pleasure to have you all here.
- Good evening ladies and gentlemen first let me introduce myself. I am … I thank you all for taking out your precious time for the occasion.
Then Welcome The Guests
Once you are done with welcoming the audience, it’s time to move on to the chief guest and other dignitaries. It should be kept in mind that the chief guest and other special guests are welcomed individually by the speaker, also on behalf of the audience. For Ex-
- I take this opportunity to introduce you to Mr. X (chief guest) and also request you (the audience) to welcome him with a huge round of applause. I would also like to introduce you to Mr. Y (Name and designation), Mr. Z (Name and Designation) and once again request you all to welcome them with a huge round of applause.
- I feel proud to introduce you to Mr. X (chief guest) and also request you (the audience) to welcome him and all other dignitaries present, with a huge round of applause. I would also like to thank Mr. Y (Name and designation), Mr. Z (Name and Designation) for taking out their precious time for the event and make it more memorable. A huge round of applause for them, Ladies and Gentlemen!
An effective welcome speech addresses all present in a very polite way, making them feel important and by admiring their presence. Whether the speech welcomes a single person or a group; it should be framed to honor them and also to inform them about the occasion, event or function. I am confident that after thoroughly going through the article, you would be able to write an impressive welcome speech, practice it and also deliver it with confidence.