Tag Archives: Principles


This nice expression  captures the principles in my book, “Unaccustomed as  I am … the Wedding Speech Made Easy,” It came from Kate Willis’ review in You and Your Wedding magazine. I like it! When I set out to write, I was surprised to find that the majority of existing titles  were specific to the ‘best man’ or ‘groom’ but few if any to the bride or best woman.

Traditions are changing, slowly

This bias can be explained, if not excused, by ‘tradition’. After all the word marriage comes from the Latin word ‘mas’ meaning male or masculine. And ‘tradition’ still influences much of the ceremonial. The Anglo-Saxon father would use his daughter as a form of currency to pay off his debts, the bride standing on the left is rooted in the groom’s need to keep his sword arm free for action to prevent ‘bride kidnapping!’

Some, not all, of these traditions  continue but one which is changing is in speech making. It is no longer a male bastion.  Most women I spoke to in my research, while still less likely to speak, saw it as much their role as that of the men. However this does not mean a need for books aimed at the bride or best woman .

The principles of the wedding speech are constant

In twenty years of coaching presentations and speech making, roughly equal numbers women  and men, I have never needed to give, or been asked for, different advice depending on gender. As I spell out in my book the principles of speeches are a constant:

“Whether formal or impromptu, religious or civil, straight or same sex, first, second, third or fourth marriage, at the heart is a constant: the celebration of the union of a couple. And the basics of a good speech are constant too. Depending on the nature of the event and the audience – hundreds of guests in a grand ballroom or a handful outside on  garden lawn – you may tailor the content of your speech, but stick to the principles.”

If you are speaking as a bride, best woman or mother you can find these constant principles in my book.  (So will the men.)

Unaccustomed As I Am … The Wedding Speech Made Easy” amzn.to/2bEoQSH




Putting principles into practice.

It’s a truism I guess, but principles aren’t worth much if they are not put into practice. This is where the Best Practice Guides come into their own.

The latest guide is Staging and Content.  In effect, it looks at practical ideas to address the principle that ‘it’s not what you say but the way you say it’ that matters in pitching.

Another  fundamental principle is that the better you manage available time, resource and, most of all your energy, in the lead up and during the pitch itself, the greater your strike rate.  The Perfect Pitch Process guide looks at ways of achieving this.

Decisions are rarely taken on rational grounds alone.  ‘People buy people’.  This principle so easily forgotten in the often feverish last minute attempt to improve content. The  Rehearsal guides and Chemistry Lessons are intended to help make people, not content, the heroes and heroines!

The guides, copyright of parkerinc , are easily downloadable for reference at the appropriate stage in any pitch. If anyone has, or knows of, other guides that might be shared please let us know