Friday, December 28, 2018

Making the Clock your Friend

One important part of speaking is to be timely and organized. In Toastmasters, we practice expressing thoughts within a specific time. The timer helps hone the members of toastmasters skills on keeping within our time limits, and organizing our thoughts without preparation.
The timer asks the speaker, or speakers, of the day how long their speech is supposed be (ie 5-7 minutes). They then will sit at the end of the table with the lights and stopwatch to record everyone's time. When the meeting starts, the Toastmaster of the day will ask them to explain their role.
They time the speech turning on the green light at 5 minutes (if the speech is from 5-7 minutes). The yellow light will go on at six minutes, and red at 7 minutes. If the speaker goes over 7 minutes, the red light will remain on until they conclude their speech. Timer records the time of the speech, or speeches so they can report it when called upon by the Toastmasters.
The other job of the timer is to record the times of table topics, so the group knows who qualified in table topics. To qualify a person needs to speak on the question given for one to two minutes, and then the group votes on who had the best speech, and is given the table topic award.
The speech evaluator also is timed for two to three minutes.
At the end of the meeting, the timer will gives each person's time to the secretary so they can include the times in their report.

Friday, December 14, 2018

A General Evaluator?

Every Toastmasters meeting is evaluated by one of the members. This is not a leadership role, but a floating roll between the members. The general evaluator states to help any guests or new members, the purpose and benefits of having an evaluation done.
During the meeting, the general evaluator needs to have full view of the room, so that they can see everything that happens. When the general evaluator comes in, they first need to see if all of the trophies, materials, banners and property is out, and where it is supposed to be. This also ensures that the team has the tools they need to perform, such as the timing lights, stopwatch, and manuals. Another part of the general evaluator's job is to make sure their team knows who they are evaluating, and have the manuals for those people.
The easiest way to complete the meeting evaluation is to have a checklist of what is supposed to go on during the meeting. On of the most important part is if the meeting, and meeting sections, start and end on time. They also should focus on how the Toastmaster of the day transitioned between sections, and if they helped to create a positive atmosphere.
For evaluating different participants, the general evaluator points out both good and bad in the following areas of the person's: preparation, organization, delivery, enthusiasm, observation and performance of duties. When their evaluation part of the meeting begins, the general evaluator will introduce the speech evaluator. From there each evaluator: grammarian, times, and general evaluation of the meeting. For the evaluation, commenting on the quality of the evaluation team's performance. Include in their evaluations if they were positive, helpful, and suggesting improvement. Make sure to tell how the meeting flowed, and if the segments started on time.

Saturday, December 1, 2018

A Toastmaster or Master of Toast?

Toastmasters may seem like a funny word. The word can make weddings and toasts come to mind, while it does help with those types of toasts, that is not what Toastmasters focuses on.

The toastmaster of the day is the person who leads the meeting. After the president calls the meeting to order, they hand control over to the toastmaster of the day. 
Here is what the toastmaster does:
They will invite the general evaluator to introduce their evaluation team. 
Welcomes the speaker, and tells what their speech is about, the title, and if it is a manual speech. 
The toastmaster of the day also welcomes the topicsmaster, and makes sure there are good transitions between the speech(es), and table topics. 
They also need to get the times of the speeches, both prepared and impromptu. 
Toastmaster welcomes the general evaluator, and asks for the table topics award to be given. After this, they give the meeting back over to the president. 

 If this seems overwhelming, don't worry!! After joining the club, you will not be assigned to be toastmaster until you are comfortable with the meeting, and know what the rolls are. At Yaquina Toastmasters, new members are usually assigned timer for their first roll, which is easy.