We provide a supportive and positive learning experience in which members are empowered to develop communication and leadership skills, resulting in greater self-confidence and personal growth.
Every Toastmasters club meeting seeks to practice four core skills - prepared (formal) speech presentation, impromptu speaking, evaluation, and leadership - and Maverick is no exception. What then will set this new club apart? We are seeking to take "A fresh approach to a timeless program!"
Our vision includes a special emphasis on the following:
- A vibrant mentoring program
Every member will have a mentor and will eventually mentor a fellow member. Resources will be provided for mentoring within the Toastmasters program. We may also explore the possibility of forming professional or personal mentoring relationships between our members at some point in our club's future.
We understand that not everyone will be immediately comfortable serving as a mentor to someone else, so this program will be instituted with the understanding that mentoring is an additional skill that needs to be learned and practiced.
New Toastmasters will be able to take advantage of the substantial experience of fellow members. Within our small budding group, we already have five Distinguished Toastmasters (the highest level of achievement in the Toastmasters educational program -the Ph.D. of Toastmasters, if you will) and several Advanced Toastmasters.
- Deliberate relationship building
We hope that regular opportunities to have fun as a group outside of the normal club meeting environment has already become an important part of our club culture. Though we will explore and develop this concept further as we continue to meet as a club, we are already having fun together as a group through our weekly game time, facilitated by a role unique to Maverick Toastmasters, called the "Gamemaster." We play a card or board game every week following each meeting with those who are able to stay. During these game times, we talk, laugh, and get to know each other better.
During our club's short history, we have also already had two special events: a [first annual] Spooky Tales contest just before Halloween, which drew over 30 costumed members and guests and featured 8 brave contestants, and a Holiday potluck party in December. We will continue to seek any excuse to celebrate as a group and hope that our next special event will be a charter party very soon. Visit today and help us achieve that goal!
- A commitment to fun, creative meeting programs
While working within the framework of practicing the Toastmasters core skills named above, we can be as creative with our meeting programs as we want. Our meetings will maintain a level of professionalism and formality expected of a Toastmasters meeting, but with a unique flair and sense of adventure. We most definitely have fun together while learning our vital skills.
If you are unfamiliar with the Toastmasters program, please read on for some basic information.
Toastmaster Club Meetings
Every Toastmaster meeting has 5 basic sections. The core skills practiced during each section are in parentheses.
- Opening (Leadership)
The presiding officer opens the meeting by greeting everyone, especially the guests.
The meeting's emcee, the Toastmaster, introduces the meeting's "functionaries" - individuals with various roles and responsibilities tailored to help members improve on specific aspects of communication and leadership.
- Prepared/Formal Speeches (Prepared Speech Presentation)
Members work out of communication (speech) manuals on projects with specific objectives.
The first communication manual - the Competent Communication Manual - walks the new Toastmaster through fundamental speech writing and presentation skills through a series of ten projects. You begin easily by talking about the subject you are most familiar with: yourself. Once you've survived your first speech, you'll focus on basic skills like organizing your speech, focusing the point of your speech, using body language and vocal variety, incorporating research, persuasion, and inspiration/motivation.
Upon completion of the Competent Communication Manual, you may begin working through two of the eighteen available Advanced Communication Manuals, depending on your personal interests and/or career focus.
- Table Topics (Impromptu Speaking)
The emcee of this exercise is called the Table Topics Master. The Topics Master brings open-ended questions based on a meeting theme or subject and calls on members at random to answer these questions. No preparation time is given to answer these questions. This exercise helps you improve the ability to think on your feet, quickly organize your thoughts, and respond coherently with no preparation. It sounds intimidating, but it is frequently the portion of the meeting members enjoy the most. The exercise is particularly helpful in situations such as job interviews, social settings, and last-minute presentation assignments from the boss.
- Feedback (Evaluation, Impromptu Speaking, Leadership)
This section is facilitated by the "General Evaluator" of the meeting, who introduces the speech evaluators and calls upon the "functionaries" for their various reports.
Preassined evaluators - one per formal speaker - provide specific feedback on the prepared speeches. Evaluators will comment on such things as how well the speaker met the project objectives, personal opinion on what the speaker did well and issue challenges for improvement. Speech evaluations are valuable not only for the speaker specifically, but generally for the audience as well as ideas and tips are gleaned from these evaluations.
- Closing (Leadership)
The presiding officer will facilitate the completion of any club business, solicitation of guest feedback, and more before adjouring the meeting.
Return to top