I have recently invited one of my students, who I coach individually, to join our Toastmaster meetings. Say what? Toastmasters? What is that? Toastmasters is a non-profit educational organization with local clubs around the world. It´s one of the best places to gain confidence when speaking English. Listen to what the members of this club have to say about their experience:
I got hooked on Toastmasters about 2 months ago. And I can´t get enough of the supportive, friendly atmosphere I experience every Wednesday evening during our club meetings. It is hard, to overcome your fear of public speaking, but the result is worth every second you spend with your fellow Toastmasters and on preparation of your speeches. Come give it a try!
Here is how my student, Helena, saw her first meeting:
“Are you new in town or just want to meet new people? Are you thinking of practicing or improving your communication skills? Is personal development your passion? No – it is not a recruiting advertisement… but a real event taking place here in Brno. And everywhere around the world.
All that and even more can you get – sometimes wrapped by a winner´s ribbon at „Toastmasters Club“.
As a newcomer I had not expected it. A group of people presenting their speeches on various topics which you have already heard, formal atmosphere and threatened eyes of audience waiting to be picked for improptu speeches… that is what I was prepared for.
Instead I saw people willing to step out of their comfort zone, delivering their well-prepared speech where hours of rehearsal and fear were very well-hidden behind the excitement coming maybe from the encouragement of the present audience.
When I got home from the meeting, I couldn´t help but note down a short description that is short but accurate: „evaluation and evaluating of the evaluation“.
Nowadays giving and receiving feedback is like a gift. It is one of the fastest methods for personal growth, awareness of one´s gaps and development in general. Giving feedback should be thoroughly considered and that is what you can learn here, too. During a Toastmaster session the evaluator comes to give the speaker prompt feedback publicly after his/her main speech and subsequently another evaluator appears to evaluate the quality of the previous feedback.
Sounds too complicated? Come and see and make your own evaluation.”
Ing. Helena Slaninová
Brno Toastmasters website: http://www.brnotoastmasters.com/
Brno Toastmasters FB page: http://www.facebook.com/BrnoToastmasters
Toastmasters International – find your local branch: http://reports.toastmasters.org/findaclub/
If you have any questions or comments, please, post them below!