I joined Toastmasters in 2012, wanting to improve my stage skills (I wanted to be a comedian. Still working on it!)
From my first meeting I was welcomed and supported in my journey. The members of all the clubs where I have been a member are very kind and understanding, and I received a lot of help in achieving my desired outcomes. I developed my speech writing and presentation skills by delivering various speeches; but I also learned organisational and leadership skills while organising events, mentoring new members and being a club officer.
The skills I learned at the club and from other members I have applied to my work, where I have been able to achieve more, and most importantly make others aware of my achievements. This has led to several job advancements and more recognition in the workplace.
I have now been a member for over 10 years, and I am still learning new skills. But what I love most about Toastmasters, is the opportunity to help others learn and achieve their goals.
When I first joined Toastmasters in 2001, little did I know what a significant effect it would have on my life? I joined with the aim of improving my communication skills in front of an audience but it has delivered much more than that to me. It has improved my listening skills through the evaluations we give, my leadership skills with the responsibilities you get with different roles in your club, the division and district.
I certainly wouldn't have thought that I would be speaking to hundreds of people now without those butterflies and leading 17 clubs in my division to be the best they can be.
I think Toastmasters is the best-kept secret in town when it comes to communication and leadership training and I would recommend it to anyone who wants these skills in their life and work. Join a club NOW, it will be the best move you have ever made.
I was invited to join toastmasters by a discerning friend who felt that I would find it both interesting and enjoyable. It was more than that and I am eternally grateful to her.
Although I had been exposed to public speaking for many years, I had never had to give a speech and bring it to a conclusion within a really short time span. I am talking of minutes, even seconds.. That is an art in itself. Toastmasters also teach you how to ad lib, on demand, again for a limited length of time. These disciplines are not always easy to master, especially as they include many more skills on the art of speaking itself. They are vitally useful tools.
However Toastmasters is more than learning how to improve your speaking ability. It introduced me to a whole new group of people , all with the same goal in mind, who meet weekly in a friendly and social way. This alone added another dimension to my life.
For these reasons I recommend anyone keen to improve their skills in the use of the English language, should join Toastmasters. They would be amazed at the difference it makes in their ability to express themselves, and all in a friendly congenial atmosphere. No wonder members join for years and years. They climb a ladder of harder and harder tasks and compete with other clubs all over the world.
A long time ago in a distant memory I heard of a group of people who learnt and practiced public speaking. They were called Toastmasters
It sounded like a lot of fun BUT, do they really have impromptu speaking? How can one talk on a subject to which the subject is totally foreign? I had a very busy work schedule at the time and although had an interest, the questions, the impromtu speaking, and the time I thought I needed put me right off. I had better things to do with my life, so I thought.
From the moment I sat in my first meeting many years later, I felt the enthusiasm, I experienced the energy, the excitement, the positive supportive learning environment, and watched enthralled at the speakers. It was obvious this was a hobby I had to attack with my usual gusto. Then I find out everyone is commended on what they did well and offered some points for growth to be used at a later time. What is this, supportive, positive, non judgemental feed back? Now, if not before, I was hooked.
1 year later I was entrenched in the leadership group. I had the opportunity to learn membership growth strategies, meeting program skills, emcee skills. I accepted the challenge of club officer roles then Area Governor which meant assisting 5 other clubs to achieve their goals, I was encouraged and supported to be the Chairman of the District Convention.
Just when I thought I could sit and rest, along comes an opportunity to start my own club or mentor a club in trouble,
I am excited by the opportunities for personal growth and skill development attending Toastmasters. I am proud of my Toastmaster achievements, I look forward enthusiastically to future challenges and opportunities.