The key to my retirement speech example was preparation, and it's never too soon to start. I wrote the first draft two years before I retired! The reason I did this was to project my thoughts into the future and visualize how I wished to be remembered, and how I wanted to acknowledge my friends and work colleagues. Use this as a template to generate your own speech ideas.
Friends, colleagues...and that’s what you’ve been friends and colleagues. When I began working here, over 25 years ago, I didn’t think I’d ever get to make this speech!
I had a varied career before I joined BT Company, including working in Africa and working for a US Multi-National. I was 34 and very ambitious. I liked the Multi National environment and was open to the possibility of working abroad again. KPMG recommended me for the new role of Finance Director at BT. At the same time I was on the final interview for a prestigious Multi National subsidiary. I consulted with some friends, and to my surprise they urged me take the job in what was then a small family business. Well that turned out to be the best career advice I ever got!
Why do I say that? Because working here fulfilled as many of my career and life ambitions as well as any other job I could imagine. Sure I had options and could have taken a very different path, but I have no regrets whatever about the choice I made, and in consequence-the life I didn’t live.
Nothing succeeds like success, and this company has been a wonderful success story. I’m privileged to have been part of that success, along with the people in this room, and other people no longer with us.
I was given the opportunity to use many of my talents. I was always interested in learning and personal development. My parents and mentors fostered this in me. Within two years of joining this company I was supported in my desire to do an MBA. My Thesis was a case study on the company and I paid particular attention to Marketing and Business Policy. This became a roadmap for my role in the company’s development
By the time I graduated in 1986 the company was
changing and the need for Marketing in a more strategic way was becoming
apparent. This fitted my ambitions perfectly. The MBA gave me the tools and the
academic framework, I knew the jargon! I volunteered to manage the marketing
function. So you see I was able to change and expand my career without changing
I said I was interested in learning and apart from the MBA, which was a major commitment; I was also supported in many shorter courses at the Irish Management Institute. In fact I attended some form of training every two years. I know the company also benefited from this, but I never took it for granted and I’m grateful for the support.
Another reason why I’m grateful for my career here is because the company values of quality, integrity, honesty and fair play were so aligned with mine. I never had to do anything that even remotely compromised my values. Indeed I hope I supported and strengthened the company values.
During my time here I enjoyed excellent Work/Life balance as my family can attest. I always did my best and the demands of the job were always reasonable. I didn’t have to work long hours but I worked all the time I was at work. It’s no coincidence that a man of my potential still plays off a 20 handicap! I was president of Rotary and was active in Toastmasters. I was always grateful and respectful for that work/life balance and made sure I gave back what I received.
I want to acknowledge all the
wonderful colleagues I’ve worked with over the years, who gave me great
personal and career support. We had lots of fun and conversations, and you
listened patiently to my stories!
Thank you for sharing this celebration dinner with me and thank you for the support and friendship over 26 years.
I believe that this great company will continue to grow and prosper and I trust that each one of you will be happy and fulfilled here. Keep up the good work; you’ve been a wonderful team to work with.
Thanks for everything, I shall miss you.
Use my Retirement Speech Example as a template for your own retirement speech ideas.
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