Welcome to Toastmasters Southern Africa
The time may come when you ask yourself this question; a question to which there are many answers. This article provides the good, the better and the best reasons why it is a good thing to do.
People become Toastmasters for a variety of reasons, mostly to improve their communication and leadership skills. This is done through completing educational programmes to achieve Toastmasters qualifications. The highest award, Distinguished Toastmaster (DTM), is achieved by completing both the communication and leadership streams. To achieve the Advanced Leader Silver (ALS) qualification a Toastmaster must either start a new club or rescue an existing non-performing club. This is the primary reason why many Toastmasters decide to start a new club: to complete their ALS. It is a good reason but not the only reason.
It is said that to truly learn and understand one must do. Starting a new club is an opportunity for a Toastmaster to practice the skills learned in the communication and leadership programmes, an opportunity to learn by doing.
To start a new club you will make many presentations: to convey information about Toastmasters to the prospective members, to persuade people to join the club and to inspire people to become members and take on responsibilities to run the new club. This puts the skills learned achieving the Competent Communicator qualification to work to achieve a meaningful outcome.
But a Toastmaster cannot start the club on his/her own. To be successful you will have to build a core team, secure participation from many other Toastmasters, prepare plans and then manage completing all the tasks. Doing this you will be team-building, delegating, listening, and problem-solving; all skills learned achieving the Competent Leader qualification.
Starting a new club provides an opportunity to use all the skills learned, to learn-by-doing in pursuit of a meaningful
outcome. This is a better reason to start a new club.
The purpose of Toastmasters is to help people to grow so that they are better equipped to achieve all their goals; goals at work, at play and at home. The skills learned as a member of a Toastmasters Club are foundational and universal in their relevance and applicability. This learn-by-doing approach in a club is powerful but also constrained. An effective club can only support the active participation of twenty to thirty members. Starting new clubs is essential to enable more people to enjoy the unquestionable benefits of being a Toastmaster.
Only active Toastmasters can lead the drive to start more clubs. While starting new clubs does help you complete a leadership programme and develop your own competency and confidence, starting new clubs builds an infrastructure that changes peoples’ lives, helping them to achieve their dreams and ultimately to create value for our communities, corporates and countries. When you decide to start a new club you become part of achieving this purpose, which is the best reason of all to make this decision.
They say the best time to plant a tree was twenty years ago and the second best time is today. Decide today to help start new clubs and be part of creating a better future for all!
David Preece DTM, PDG
Lynn Southby, Area Governor for Area S5, and Beth Thomas DTM, PID, PDG working with Rotary Club of Three Rivers in the Vaal Triangle used the “Improve your management skills” and “Effective Listening skills” programmes from the Success Leadership Series to train a group of 27 Ward Coordinators on 23rd January. These are volunteers working in the community with Rotary. Rainbow Nation Toastmasters Club and Rotary Club of Three Rivers will work together again on Human Rights day (21st March) to do a “Speaker’s Corner” event when people can get on their “soap boxes” and speak about issues needing attention in our area and giving ideas on how to solve the problems.
Rainbow Nation Toastmasters Club partnered with Rotary Club of Three Rivers for a PR Awareness day and led an annual Bilingual contest to celebrate our diversity with over 60 people attended.
Clearly Rainbow Nation Toastmasters Club not only serve their members and make a difference in their community. Well done to the club and to Daniel Masukela the club VPE for these events.