Viola Lee, DTM
Candidate's Office: International Director
Region Number: 14
Toastmasters member since: 2017
Education: Bachelor of Management, Hebei University of Economics and Business. Major of Marketing Management
Employer and/or position: Supervisor & co-Founder of Promes Management Consulting Co LTD, Shenzhen, China. From Feb of 2018 till now.
Served as District Director of District number: 118
Term of service: 2022-2023
In term as District Director, District achieved: Distinguished
Toastmasters offices held and terms of service (international-, region-, and District-level):
- 2018-2019 Division A Director of D89
- 2019-2020 District Conference Chair
- 2020-2021 Division H Director of 118
- 2021-2022 Club Growth Director of 118
- 2023-2023 Immediate Past District Director
Toastmasters honors and recognition (international- and District-level):
- 2018-2019 President's Distinguished Division
- 2019-2020 Outstanding Member of District 118
- 2020-2021 President's Distinguished Division
- 2021-2021 DTM certificate with Pathways programs
- 2021-2022 Smedley Distinguished District 2021-2022 as CGD of 118
- 2021-2022 Excellence in Club Growth
- 2022-2023 District Club Strength Award (for exceptional growth in average club size by 17.22%)
- 2022-2023 President's 20-Plus Award
- 2022-2023 Distinguished District as DD
Relevant work experience and how it relates to Toastmasters and your role as a Board Member:
As an investor and supervisor of a management consulting company in Shenzhen China started from 2018, I attend management conference regularly to evaluate company's development strategy and vital decisions. On the other hand, my family used to live and worked in different cities across continents more than 9 years, like Moscow of Russia, Harare of Zimbabwe, Cario of Egypt and Islamabad of Pakistan etc. It makes me manage multicultural identities well and feel more comfortable to collaborate with people from various countries and cultures, which is an essential factor of being board members.
201802-Now Supervisor & co-Founder of Promes Management Consulting Co LTD, Shenzhen,China.
2016.11-2018.03 Business Director, China Theatrics Culture& Media Co.ltd
2014-2016 Member of International Woman's Club of MOSCOW, Volunteer. (https://iwcmoscow.ru/)
200906-2010.01 HSBC Middle-East Region, Assistant to Account Manager.
200607-2007.12 Lenovo China (Shenzhen) Co.LTD; Regional Sales Specialist
What experience do you have in strategic planning?
Outside Toastmasters, in the company I often research on the national macroeconomy policy impact industrial developments which helps company to identify opportunities and risks.
Within Toastmasters, when I served as CGD, my strategy was engaged all the DVDs more focused on corporate clubs, which is a more efficient way to show Toastmasters values. On the other hand, I creatively encouraged members charter community clubs in various vertical fields, such as purchasing alliance, HR, free lancers, trainers and so on.
When I lead 82 members conference team as Chair, I set a higher goal on 800 attendees as well as required 75% clubs of district had at least one member to attend 2020 conference. All this based on district mission and conference impact, we serve all district members and extend the Toastmaster influence to wider boarder. Whole team got motivated and work together determinedly, and our registration reached 800 only by the end of December which was 2 and half months ahead the plan.
What experience do you have in the area of finance?
1) As District Director, I guided our Trio to worked out the annual budget at the year beginning, strictly implement the budget plan as main approver and cooperate audit committee work regularly. To make sure use the fund to against the goals set in our district success plan.
2) As conference Chair on 2020, I and my 82 team members completed my ticket income goal as 800 attendees by 75 day ahead of anticipated plan. Unfortunately, we encountered pandemic on end of January 2020 and I execute the whole price refund scheme to all the 800 attendees. Account to my excellent cost control and strict accounting plan execution, the conference broke even and did not cost any penny of district fund.
As supervisor of our consulting company, the business we are processing is relatively simplified. I participate to formulate plan of distribution of profits and audit review.
What experience do you have in developing policies?
So far I have no direct experience on developing policies.
Suppose that if I were a member of policymakers, the follow 5 steps are what I would carry out on developing some new policies.
1) drafting of the policies based on sufficient research,
2) soliciting input and opinions in certain range,
3) revising and improving it,
4) experts or all board members evaluation
5) deliberation on board meeting.
What lessons did you learn from previous leadership positions?
I can decide what kind of person I want to be. Thoughts and attitudes influence actions, actions produce results. When I served as DD, I find all my district leaders working hard. But sometime, they were confined by resource and conditions outside, especially we were still in the pandemic time. From mid of October, I conducted weekly online meetings to all Area directors for listening, to discuss for solutions and encouraging them to achieve more. On the other hand, I divided all 11 division directors to 3 groups and asked Trio to be mentor for each group for 2 months, then exchange. This move indeed emerged all the 11 DVDs the whole year and helped all of them to be better leaders. It turned out to be satisfied. 30 among 41 of Area Directors achieved Distinguished as well as 8 among 11 Division directors achieved President Distinguished Division! Besides that, 10 of 11 division directors joined next term Exco team or various district committees constantly to explore more on leadership, what makes me feel touched and proud. I believe that a competent leader should enable others to develop qualities of a leader constantly. I would like to continue to do it in a wider range!
What experience and key strengths would you bring to the Board of Directors?
As a caring leader and risk taker, I am passionate to be a board member who helps to shape this centurial worldwide educational organization. Through membership demographics of 2022 and 2021 on our website, I am as age 40 some female who has management bachelor degree employed alumni who is the most representative user. So I can understand the most of our precious members of worldwide. Secondly, with successful experience of my district 118 as keeping 5 years rapid growth, I can share more extensive and help more district to achieve bigger goal. Last not the least, travel to over 25 countries and lived and worked aboard for 8 years make me can easily emerge more with multiple cultures and more interpersonal with people, which is helpful to be a board member.
Why do you want to serve as an International Officer/Director?
Every one of us has leadership within. As a lifelong learner, I would like to expand self-frontier in different ways. Serve as an International Director is one of best moves.
At the same time what I can bring to Toastmasters is diversity. As an well-educated 40 Asian female member, I am most representative member and I can have an insight into new market and new opportunities
What volunteer experience do you have outside of Toastmasters?
I was a member of IWCmoscow from 2014 to 2016. (https://iwcmoscow.ru)
The club's main aim is to support several carefully selected charity projects and help those in need in Moscow and the region and there are female members representing around 110 countries and areas. It has events and activities seasonally. I often used to join the committee for organising events as volunteer.
Have you worked with other Boards of Directors outside of Toastmasters? If so, describe your experience.
Haven't have this chance yet.
In your opinion, what are Toastmasters International’s major objectives and how would you work to achieve them?
Toastmasters empowers individuals through personal and professional development.
If I were a Board member, I would work closely with all board members as a whole, which has the authority to direct and control Toastmasters International, following the provisions of Bylaws of Toastmasters International.
1. to inspire others and communicate the organisation's mission, core values, and envisioned future.
2 to participate in the development and implementation of a strategic plan.
3. analyze information, make decisions and evaluate policy.
4. Participate in Toastmasters events, such as Executive Committee meetings, Board meetings, committee meetings, International Convention, Mid-year training and district visits and conferences.
Additional information about candidate:
Lived and worked abroad about 9 years, reside like Moscow, Cairo, Islamabad and Harare.
Travelled to 25 countries so far.
moved back and settle down in Shenzhen from June 2016.
Married and have one lovely son.
Various hobbies, such as hiking, travelling, reading, drawing, golf and so on