When you lot are not getting married, I work alongside a rabble of journalists, where my job is to film and photograph participants who use our studios to practise delivering presentations.
In recent years a high profile client of ours was Nick Clegg, who we helped in preparing for the first ever big TV debates (remember those carefree days) and as you will be aware, he did a pretty decent job.
Nick knew that this was his biggest chance to get his message across and alongside anticipating what questions would be asked, he also set aside a large portion of his diary to practise how he would deliver his answers.
The reason for this shameless name dropping is to emphasize to grooms, fathers of the bride and best men, that even the most experienced public speakers take the time to prepare.
I have seen so many examples where the most confident, outspoken people, pointing to their heads “it’s all in here” have stumbled and muddled their way through the speech, totally underestimating how tricky it is to pull up the words once the spotlight is on.
On the flip side I have also encountered the most timid of grooms, who after illuminating the fear of not knowing what to say, delivered the most barn storming of speeches.
If you are really nervous about standing up in front of all your guests, then it is quite common to undertake the speeches before the wedding breakfast is served.
You should take into account that this will cut into the time you have for photographs and mingling, and your guests may be less receptive than they would be with a full belly.
Remember though, that all these guests are on your side, and you can be assured that if you are prepared, the anxiety will subside once you are up and running… many have told me they thoroughly enjoyed it.
So to quote the radio 4 today programme presenter John Humphreys, when asked what makes a good presentation, he simply said “three things… preparation, preparation and preparation”
Or as my colleague Scott would put it – the 5 P’s -“Preparation Prevents Pi#s Poor Performance”