Archive for the ‘Club meetings’ Category
In the past 10 days have visited few Toastmasters clubs which led me to rewind a decade earlier and explore what has changed over the decade. And I observed ………
- There were fewer clubs but more participation.
- There was less awareness but more enthusiasm.
- There was no Facebook page but serious communication.
- There were fewer connections but more connected.
Yesterday I was at Area contest – 57 with the most simplistic role play of Chief Judge. Simple off course that’s what I believe; until I found a detour.
I believe every role play is simple and straight forward until you find a detour. Because in times like these is the test of your capacity to extend justice to the role play. And yesterday was the day I found two detours. Having said that incidences like these bring in the learning and maturity.
Yesterday I learnet few things:
- When briefing don’t assume your team knows or would remember everything. Hence share important instructions even at the extent of sounding trite and boring.
- Request for feedback after sharing instructions.
- Invite questions on the role play. And if no question is forthcoming and to encourage initiative, bundle important information in a question format such as “I am sure you are aware that your ballot will be rejected if it does not carry your signature?”
- Invite suggestions and caveats from your team members. Trust the wisdom of Crowd Sourcing.
- Finally write down the list of instructions on a piece of paper you would like to share after all I don’t expect myself to remember it verbatim.
Wishing you a superb day ahead.
Sharjah Cornish in UAE is one of the best places to take a morning stroll, not because it’s Cornish. But simply because it has a walking strip and the greener patches around. You can walk to your heart contentment and if you ever get tired you can rest on the greener patches or on the side benches. And if you plan to engage in stretching exercise or Yoga, there is no better place than the green patches around. Over all it’s a bargain deal.
My topic is not about Cornish; greener patches or morning walk. But since the weather has improved in the past 10 days, the population of early morning walkers and joggers have increased exponentially and I believe it will improve further. When during summer time we could spot 3 or 4 walkers distance away but now you are practically rubbing shoulders. You can spot young, old and kids. You can spot male and females.
Why such increase in the number of joggers and walkers? Is it now people are more aware of benefits of early morning walk? Or people have more time? None of the above, they were aware of the benefits and they have the same 24 hours. The simple reason is that weather has improved, has become cooler and pleasant. It has become enjoyable to walk. You don’t sweat so much unlike the summer time.
What is the lesson? Lesson is people are very much familiar with what is beneficial for them and what is not? And they will exercise their choice where they experience more Comfort, Fun and Education. So are your Toastmasters meeting experience is more Enjoyable and Fun? Take a decision.
Last week had been a whirlwind of visiting various Toastmasters club meetings and would like to share few tips that I believe would enhance the performance of participants and experience of audience across the Toastmasters club.
- Create a mentor pool within Excom that should provide VERBAL feedback to TMOD.
- Create a 30 minutes early time pocket for either Table Topics session ( Lagoon Toastmasters – Sharjah ) or utilize that time for effective networking with an objective. Read the rest of this entry »
This evening I attended Lagoon Toastmasters Club meet at Ryan Hotel – Sharjah. I reached early since I was aware of their best practice of conducting Table Topics session half an hour before the actual start of the meeting time. The popularity and success of early Table Topics session is reflected in the proof that the tradition continues un-interrupted having initiated over an year and early. The occasion also marked the celebration of 88th Birthday of Toastmasters movement and cake cutting ceremony by the club members.
March 4, 2012: Toastmasters International is a non-profit organization engaged in developing public speaking and leadership skills amongst its members. The organization is for the members, by the members and of the members. And one of the objective of the program is to spread the benefit by inducting new members.
Every club has the mandate to induct new members and the new member’s effort is reflected in the club’s DCP points. On the flip side, District officer’s performances are measured by different criteria, including number of new clubs being set up. To achieve the milestone you must sell the programs benefit to new members to join the clubs and corporate communities to set up new clubs.
The simple process includes selling the benefits of toastmasters program and it’s a natural progression that takes its natural time period. But what if you can hasten the process by influencing their mindsets and help members devote extra time on improving club activities and performance.
I believe you can hasten the process by influencing guest’s decision. And here I would share “6” pillars of influence identified by guru of persuasion Dr. Robert B. Cialdini and they are
- Consensus and Commitment
- Social power
RECIPROCATION: We are programmed to pay back a favor and it’s in our DNA. Ralph Waldo Emerson rightly said “Pay every debt as if God wrote the bill”.
TIP :When you invite guests, give them the Toastmasters magazine and or guest kits to take back and read. Make them comfortable and let a senior Ex-Com member explain the program to him. Ask him if he needs any other clarifications. Treat the guest as you would a friend and if required arrange to drop him back at his residence.
CONSENSUS AND COMMITMENT: We as humans have an excessive desire to be consistent with what we have already done or said.
TIP :Get feedback from your guests at the end of the meeting and let them fill out a feedback form that will also ask for them to write down what they liked about the program.
SOCIAL PROOF: If everyone is doing it, it is correct.
TIP : Share with your guests the Toastmasters activities in your territory and globally; there are 96 Clubs in UAE and 110,000 clubs worldwide in over 90 plus countries. Invite them to Area contests, Divisions contests and let them observe the powers of participation and performance.
SCARCITY: Hard to get things are perceived to be better than easy to get things.
TIP : Make your guest comfortable, and introduce the program clarifying all the doubts. Invite them to join but make them aware that since this is members club, the membership is subject to concurrence by all the members.
AUTHORITY: People tend to obey authoritative figures.
TIP : Introduce your guests to the Club president, VP Education, ACM, DTM and let them do the selling. If you have an important guest visiting, invite your Area Governor or Division Governor and introduce your guest to them. A pitch coming in from an authority figure influences.
LIKE: People say yes to people they like or know. People also like people that have something in common with them.
TIP : Find something in common with your guests and start your conversation with this as your basis; it could be school, college, place of residence or anything that becomes an ice breaker.
Getting new members and setting up new clubs are part of the leadership development and the more effectively you perform this activity, the better leader you emerge. Use the powers of the six pillars of influence to maximize the positive outcome. Reciprocate; commitment and consensuses; Authority; Scarcity; Like and use the Social proof.
Past International President Helen Blanchard once said “If you get out of Toastmasters all that there is to get out of Toastmasters, you will never get out of the Toastmasters”
Toastmasters’ program is a brilliant program that has benefited millions of members across the globe. It’s tailored to your lifestyle; progress as you want to progress. Having said that I would like to share “8” tips on getting the most out of Toastmasters Program..
- Read your manuals: Read your manuals; your CC, CL and other manuals received as joining kit. Underline and highlight content and draw your plan for the TM journey.
- Ask for a mentor: Request for a mentor, spend time to understand the program. Craft your projects and get your mentor guidance to improve and practice. For the senior members; create Smart group of 2 to 4 mentors and meet periodically to discuss your progress and feedback. And finally thank your mentor with a token of appreciation; coffee or a meal for every success. Let your mentor feel rewarded and make this a valuable experience for him. [we know TM is a non-profit organization but human sentiments prevail]
- Order complete set of manuals: Toastmasters is a wonderful program; every manual is treasure house. Order a complete set of “15” manuals, HPL manuals and craft your journey.
- Audit your stage time: The more quality time on the lectern, faster are the improvements. Hence audit your time on the lectern and explore areas that will allow you more time on the lectern. Maintain a log book.
- Feedback: Request feedback from key members on your deliveries and every role play. Winners feed on feedback.
- Retain written feedback and pin it to the respective project: Retain written feedback pinned to your project manuals and reference them often.
- Take up Excom role: Take up Excom role play specially President and Sergeant At Arms because they get time on the lectern in every meeting. Or take up other role plays to connect and learn to run team.
- Connect: TM forum has members from dfferent professional domain; business men, doctors, sales people, CEO, Managers and others. Connect and grow your network.
In conclusion I would reiterate; time is a scare commodity but your clever choices can double the impact of your time.
Running a full house in Toastmasters Club has become challenge but with right strategy and best practices you can run a successful Toastmasters club creating value and experience for the members. I am sharing “5” tips on getting the house full at Toastmasters club.
- Maintain records: Maintain records for the members to review at the meeting hall.
- Attendance register
- Role players list for the past meeting and role players list for the future four meetings.
- Minutes of the meetings
- Recognition: Recognize member’s achievements [Toastmasters, Professional and Personnel Achievements] and their special days during the meeting.
- Invite the key influencers: If you want to get a gathering of 50 people it’s not important that that you talk to 100 people and invite them to your club. Identify key “10” key influencers who have a serious larger circle of influence, to influence serious “50” other members. Give them the reasons why they should take up role play in your club or how their participation will help them. Then use their Klout to get houseful. Event managers are familiar with this methodology, hence they use this methodology effectively by getting key influencers to participate and attract the larger audience for events.
- Phone: It’s important to keep in touch with your members and likely prospect through email, social media but periodically pick up the phone and call. The good old way of talking to key members helps to retain participation and increase membership. This has many fold advantage such as
- Get verbal commitment to attend and participate.
- Make members feel important and special
- Get members feedback
- Proactively address any (-ve) feedback and concerns.
- Toastmasters Process: Getting members to attend and participate regularly in the club meeting is a science. And with religious practice of process defined by the Toastmasters helps to achieve the objective. Hence read, practice and conduct educational session on increasing participation and getting new members.
Enjoy practicing and reading………
Sharjah Toastmasters Humorous speech club contest was held on Dec. 21, 2011. The contest reflected energy ,passion and the desire to stretch and strut.
- The participation in the humours contest was 100% more than the standard club meetings. Why ? I cannot comprehend the reason, still looking for the motivation.
- There were 9 humorous contestants and many to applaud their endeavors.
- The contest participation was overwhelming and contestants flexed their humour muscle stepping out of their comfort zone.
- The deliveries had creative topics and am sharing the “9” titles.
ii) Tom and Jerry
iii) Seek leave, Sick leave
iv) How and why TM came into my life
v) Mr Perplex
vi) Happily Married
vii) Living with Time Bomb
viii) End of the beginning
ix) Health & Time
My salute & hearty congratulations to the first time participants.
Enjoy watching contestants sail through.
If you like the article click “LIKE”
There is so much happening in Toastmasters activities in UAE that sometime you feel overwhelmed . I believe around 80 clubs spread out in seven Emirates; every day there is an event and every event is unique. If you become the member of Toastmasters fraternity in UAE; you immediately connect with around 2000 toastmasters members in UAE.
Enjoy watching photos from various clubs a Unity in diversity.