You may be here because: You want to improve your public speaking in order to progress up the career ladder.
Your knees turn to jelly and you get anxious every time you have to speak.
You want to have the confidence to be able to speak in front of a crowd.
You want to become a better public speaker.
You have come to the right place!
At Toastmasters, you can improve your public speaking in a supportive and learning environment that allows you to grow at your unique pace.
Public speaking is learnt.
Few of us, if any, are natural public speakers and it is a skill gained through experience. Through practice, familiarity as well as by listening to the constructive criticism of peers and mentors, the public speaking mistakes learnt over the years can be unlearnt.
Through Toastmasters, public speaking skills are honed and developed, allowing the speaker to progress as well as improve confidence in front of a crowd. By learning to pause, expressing one’s self with a few words and using vibrant and vivid descriptions to get one’s point across, the basic foundations of public speaking skills are buillt.
How does Toastmasters work?
The concept is a simple one.
Attend meetings, watch and listen, take note of your peers’ constructive comments, and, when you feel ready, begin to speak.
You begin your public speaking at the Competent Communicator Level, where you progressively give ten speeches in your club. For each speech given, constructive feedback is given which highlights strengths and gives pointers to address any identified weaknesses. At the Competent Communicator level, the ten specific speech projects are designed to enhance organisation of speeches, getting to the point, say a lot with few and effective words, use body language, vocal variety, research, visual aids as well as persuade and inspire listeners to adopt a specific viewpoint.
On completion of your CC you can proceed, if you wish and in your own time, through the Advanced Communicator Levels of speech to reach the highest recognition of Distinguished Toastmaster. The advanced levels cover a multitude of projects, including entertainment, public relations, management, professional, technical and special occasions.
Leadership through Toastmasters
In addition to communication skills, you learn valuable leadership skills. By fulfilling club roles such as timekeeper, grammarian or toastmaster of leadership roles such as club sergeant, president or treasurer, your leadership skills are honed. This will improve your listening skills, your ability to give straightforward feedback, how to chair meetings and basically project manage an event and engage with a group of people.
The key, perhaps, is the mutually supportive and positive learning environment. When you stand to make your speech you know the feedback from your peers is there to encourage not belittle, to praise your strong-points and overcome your weak ones. You learn by studying the manuals, practicing and helping one another.