I believe that Toastmasters is golden! Do you? How have you personally and professionally benefited from Toastmasters?
At Coolum Communicators in Queensland, Australia, the 2017–18 Club President Mat Bridges, ACB, ALB, began club meetings in a new way. He welcomed members and guests by asking, “Fellow Toastmasters, since our last meeting who here has achieved something outside of the club due to a skill you have developed in Toastmasters?”
Do you think this encourages guests to join? Do you think this encourages members to remain members? Guests and members want to join and remain in an organization that provides golden benefits to them personally and professionally without paying the price of gold for these benefits!
Mat invented a great way to open a Toastmasters meeting. But when does the golden experience really begin at our club meetings? It begins with our meeting location, the room setup and how we prepare for our guests. These responsibilities fall to the club’s sergeant at arms (or, as 2017–18 District 30 Division N Director Jerry Phillips, ACG, ALS, titles this role, “The Vice President of First Impressions”). Does your meeting location and room setup set the gold standard for impressing your guests?
“Make our club meetings a golden experience for all our members and guests.”
Bill Russell, DTM, who served as 2017–18 Lightly Toasted club president, set the gold standard from beginning to end at that club’s meetings in Chicago. Meetings are well-organized, all meeting roles are filled in advance, members are achieving their goals, and meetings are fun! Guests are given pre-printed badges and guest packets. At the end of each meeting, guests are invited to join with an application that already has all the club-related fields completed. The conversion rate from guest to member is consistently close to 100 percent.
My message to you as I begin my year as your International President is to strive for GOLD in every aspect of our organization. This requires that we set Goals—as a member, club officer or area, division, district, region or international leader. Then we must Organize ourselves with a plan of action. By executing our plan, we will learn. Learning is a continuous process in our organization. With Dedication to our goals, an organized plan and learning, we will deliver results for ourselves, our clubs, our districts and our global organization.
Strive for GOLD this year and every year in our organization! Make our club meetings a golden experience for all our members and guests. Empower every member with golden communication and leadership skills. Go for GOLD!
LARK DOLEY, DTM