Are you a Toastmaster?
The global Toastmasters International organisation has helped millions of people sharpen their communication skills, boost their confidence and business skills and make lifelong connections in business and the community.
If you are already a Toastmaster you might want to skip to the last section of this article where we show you HOW our resources can help you in your Toastmasters journey.
But if you are thinking about joining or don’t know anything about the organisation, let us first look at WHAT it is and WHY you should consider joining.
Please note these are my personal views only. I’m not a representative of the Organisation in any official capacity. In fact if you read right through this article, I’ll even explain a couple of the downsides of being a Toastmaster!
What is Toastmasters?
Toastmasters International is an international non-profit organisation dedicated to helping people with their Public Speaking and Leadership skills.
Though founded and based in the United States it has clubs and members all over the world. Their website currently shows over 350,000 members, 16,800 clubs in 143 different countries. Those are significant numbers!
Most clubs are quite small around 20 members or so and meet on a regular basis. Some meet weekly, others monthly or twice a month. Each club is slightly different, with a different feel & demographics. So don’t feel obligated to join the first one you visit or the closest one to you. People can visit a club as a guest at no charge, so try out a few. Once you decide to join, I think the fee is still around $100 per year.
What happens at a Toastmasters meeting?
A Toastmasters meeting usually runs for 1 hour (though some are longer) and are quite structured. People are assigned different roles at the meeting and a couple of people give prepared speeches. There are also impromptu Table Topics for people to give impromptu speeches. Feedback and Evaluations are shared in this group environment so everyone learns from the process.
Parallel to the meetings, Toastmasters provide many educational opportunities both via printed material, mentoring and online training.
Why should you become a Toastmaster?
There are many benefits to becoming a Toastmaster and everyone who joins probably has a different reason for doing so.
Obviously, you will improve your Public Speaking. Both in formal speeches and in impromptu “Think on your Feet” situations.
Leadership skills are also taught and practised. You take roles at every meeting and learn as you go. There is a proven pathway to take on more and more Leadership and mentoring roles
Your Personal Growth is guaranteed. The safe yet challenging environment allows people to shine and grow to their full potential
Networking – A huge part of the process is making strong connections with people in your community and business field.
You will improve your Writing – Both for your speeches and for vital written communications.
Your Self Confidence & Self Awareness will become stronger.
You’ll learn how to Plan, Manage Projects, Resolve Conflicts, run Interviews and be interviewed.
Above all you can learn and practice in a safe and supportive environment.
As you can see all these skills are transferable to the workplace and life in general and the potential for people who take full advantage of these opportunities is immense.
Are there any Downsides to being a Toastmaster?
OK, I’m an MC and I’ve watched literally thousands of people speak on stage at events all over the world. It’s my job. I study speakers.
I can usually tell within moments if a Speaker has done Toastmaster training!
Toastmasters International has a very structured approach to everything they do. Why, because it works. The training, the meetings, the business skills etc. But it also shows in the style of speaking.
Now, I’m not saying this is a bad thing, you might be comfortable with that, but it does show and I think you should be aware of this.
The other misconception I think people have is that Toastmasters will turn them into a Professional Speaker. No. It will help you become a better speaker but it will not make you a Professional Speaker. This is a completely different thing. Sure, there are speakers who have transitioned from Toastmasters into the world of professional speaking, be it as a Keynote Speaker or like I am, a full time Corporate MC. But that requires a different set of strategies and skills.
If you are interested in learning to be a Professional Speaker, look for members organisations of the Global Speakers Federation. That’s the National Speakers Association in the USA, Professional Speakers in Australia etc. GlobalSpeakersFederation.net
If you are interested in becoming a better MC, then you are in the right place. Read On!
How can ExpertMC help you in your Toastmaster journey?
Many toastmasters from around the world have already discovered the multiple benefits of our bestselling book The Expert MC – Toolkit and Resource Manual.
If you are still actively learning, participating or competing, it’s a fantastic source of quotes, jokes, intros, thank you’s and more. Beef up your Inspirational Openers, your Table Topics, Introductions and Thank you’s with our pages and pages of field tested material. You’ll be seen as a master Ranconteur or JokeMaster.
And if you are considering using your skills to actually do this to earn money, part time or full time… you’ve hit the jackpot. Great MC’s / Masters of Ceremony / Corporate Hosts / Anchors are in huge demand world wide. Trained Toastmasters are ideally suited to make the transition.
In this ground breaking book, we’ve picked the brains of 6 professional MC’s, we twisted their arms and encouraged them to spill the beans on what it’s really like to use speaking and presentation skills in the real world. They share inside secrets on dealing with clients, with AV Teams and Venue staff. You’ll learn extra secrets on getting a crowd to be quiet, to take action, how to deliver a client’s message and get guaranteed laughs from any audience
The ExpertMC Toolkit and Resource Manual was the private note book of master MC Timothy Hyde. Lines Quotes, Sayings, Activities and more
His work as an MC has taken him all over the world for the last 25 years . MC Assignments in Hong Kong multiple times, South Africa, New Zealand multiple times, Hawaii, Cambodia and every Capital City and luxury resort in Australia.
He holds nothing back in the book and you are guaranteed to learn from his insights and strategies!
To help you along in your Toastmaster journey or to perhaps start a new one as a Corporate MC, I urge you to check out the full details via this link HERE.