Learn, grow, be humble, be a leader!
I have a dream!
My dream is to see every single Toastmasters club sending as many contestants as possible to contests. Every one of you deserve to live a unique experience to improve your Public Speaking skills AND your leadership skills. You may be puzzled with the last statement made. Let me repeat it again, by competing; yes you will also improve your leadership skills.
WHY should you want to compete?
Let me ask you one question, once you deliver a speech in your club, how many of you actually pick up the feedback forms, rewrite the speech and re-deliver it? If you are not doing this work, you are missing the opportunity to take your speech, your creation as far as possible, to the highest possible quality you can offer. When you compete and pass the club contest level, you will be doing this exercise, and very likely somebody will pro-actively offer to coach or mentor you. It never gets easier, but I promise you will just get better. We don’t grow when things are easy; we grow when we face challenges.
WHAT does it involved?
It involves humility and hard work. It’s not about being the best – it’s about being better than you were yesterday when you gave your speech for the first time. It’s not about winning the judges votes, it is about winning the audience’s heart. You will work hard, and you may not win, you will have doubts but you will also fall in love with the process of making your speech the best and simply the results will come. It may not be the first time round but remember: It is not about winning the judges votes, it is about winning the audience’s heart.
HOW can I give my best?
First you need to think like a champion. A Champion needs a support team in order to free time to re-write and rehearse. And that’s when the leadership aspect comes in the equation. You will need to empower people around you to let them help you. First - Communicate clearly around you (home, friends,work) what you are doing and how important it is for you to get better. Delegate some tasks, make colleagues, family and friends part of your future success. You will need time and indeed the rest of your life may be on hold and your social life non existent. It is perfectly OK, remember, you are a Public Speaking Champion in the making. Second - Find coaches; ask Toastmasters members to introduce you to top speakers. You will be amazed at how many angels will help you fly high (extremely valuable tip: register to the monthly webinar lead by Olivia Schofield and Chelsea Avery www.vocalwomen.com) and that is why you need to attend the Area, Division and District conferences: to make connections. Third – Competing cost money. As the main leader of your success you need to be creative and persuasive. First check if your club has a traveling budget for such events, check with a friend who is flying regularly if she/he can book a flight with air mile points, find cheap accommodation, borrow an outfit, and look like a Champion! There are many ways to find financial solutions.
We don’t grow when things are easy; we grow when we face challenges. This is why you should compete simply to grow and learn. Concentrate on the quality of what you will give to the audience that specific contest day. Be generous towards the public, be humble, and work hard. Be a Champion and a true leader: Empower your support team, let people help you....and celebrate with them!
Toastmasters organizes 2 contests per year: Fall contest (Impromptu Speaking and Humorous Speech), and the Spring contest (Evaluation and International Speech).
Tonight is the Area E3 Fall contest, organized by the Walk The Talk Advanced Toastmasters. Readers from Zürich and beyond can contact me for details if you wish to attend.
I joined Toastmasters Zug Club (Switzerland) in May 2013. It has been one of my best life decision. Toastmaster is a global organization providing a fantastic environment to develop Public Speaking and Leadership skills.
2013-2014 Club Vice President Membership
2014-2015 Club President
2014 Contestant Area Int. Speech Contest
2015 won Area, Division Int. Speech Contest. Contestant at District contest (SW Europe).
2015-2016 Area Director
From 2015 Professional Public Speaking Trainer in the making