I’m all for injecting humor into a speech, but experience has led me to conclude that telling jokes is a risky venture.
(Let me start by confessing that I love jokes, both hearing and telling them. And I enjoy the rare speakers who are able to tell jokes in a speech successfully. If you’re one of them, more power to you, and I encourage you to keep it up.)
Be Cautious about Telling Jokes in a Speech
One of the worst pieces of advice you can get about speaking is, “Start your speech with a joke.”
My advice is, “Never start a speech with a joke.”