Meeting Report – 3rd August 2017

 

By Susan Rayner

Our first meeting into August with Annalise providing our members and guests with a warm welcome.

Our Sergeant at Arms Adam R kicked the meeting off telling us about our facilities at Ripley and also the importance of keeping our phones turned off.

Adam then handed over to myself Susan Rayner your new President, where I took the opportunity to remind you all of the importance of a back pocket speech, as we unfortunately had three people drop speeches this week.

Our Toastmaster for the evening was Neil who introduced his team with great enthusiasm. Eddie was Timekeeper, John V the Ah Counter and Nick the Grammarian. They all did a wonderful job.

Leading the warm up was myself this week by asking if there was a childhood skill or sport that you had given up that you wished you had not.

Richard G gave us a Hot Tip about how best to use our arms purposefully and not worry about leaving them at the side of our bodies.

Our first speaker was Sue Shaw who gave a speech from Humorously Speaking # 3 Make Them Laugh with a speech “Relief”. This was a superb speech which delivered a very serious subject in an assuming and entertaining way, it reminded us to continue to support charities and how reliant they are on our pennies to keep them going.

Next was Richard Murray with #1 of High Performance Leadership Manual with a speech titled “The Future is Looking Bright”. Opening the speech Richard invited us to a party, where the mayor would be in attendance. He then proceeded to inform us of his plans for a new Beckenham club.

The speeches were evaluated by Karen and David Hampton Green respectively.

Dave Henson started the table topics just before our break, as with only 2 speeches this week, it meant that we had an extended table topics which allowed all members and visitors able to undertake a table topic, Dave’s theme this week was to see a subject from someone else’s point of view. Jenny Taggart had the rather challenging task of evaluating all the table topics, which she did in time and providing everyone with a commendation and recommendation. A text book evaluation.

Our General Evaluator for the evening was Tony Smith who gave us lots of useful feedback.

We then had the presentation of awards, with Richard Hampton being presented with best table topic award.

I then reminded everyone to consider bringing a speech forward or getting ready with a back pocket speech and then drawing the meeting to a close by and inviting everyone to come to the next meeting on 17th August at Ripley.

A big thank you to all those who took on roles, gave speeches and helped to make the evening a great success.

Meeting Report – 29 June 2017

The meeting tonight was the last one of our Toastmaster year, which runs from 1 July to 30 June.

First, we were all warmly greeted at the door by our hospitality person, Chi, who is a new member and did a great job of welcoming guests and members and handing out name badges to everyone.

The meeting was opened by our acting Sergeant at Arms, Adam, who then handed over to our President, Paul A.  Paul announced that there would be special biscuits tonight to celebrate the end of the Toastmaster year!

Our Toastmaster for the evening was the very capable and former President, Richard Green.  He introduced his team to us comprised of Timekeeper – what’s his name Paul Goodhill; Ah Counter – Christine; Grammarian – Fran;  Warm up – Richard M and Hot Tip – Royston.

Fran gave us a great word of the day, which was Panache, meaning style.

Richard M led the Warm up by asking members to share three positive characteristics about themselves.  Needless to say, several people said that they had panache, thus nailing the word of the day straight away.

Royston gave a useful Hot Tip, which was to breathe from your diaphragm when you’re speaking, rather than from your chest, as it makes your voice more powerful.

Our first speech was by John Cross with a speech about the poems of Percy Bysshe Shelley.  This is usually abbreviated to Shelley, which isn’t surprising!  John gave an entertaining speech about three of Shelley’s most well-known poems, which are, “One Word is Too Often Profaned” about love; “The Masque of Anarchy” about the Peterloo massacre and “Ode to a Skylark”.

Our second speech was by Alex Clark, who gave an illustrated talk about how to use Internet dating sites.  He gave some great advice on what to avoid when searching through the profiles of prospective partners, including, fleeces, trout mouths and lime-green clothes.  Useful advice indeed for anyone thinking of using one of these sites.

Speech three was a demonstration talk by Annelise about how to make Crepes.  Annelise had recorded the procedure at home and gave us a Powerpoint show on how to make them. She also brought in the fruit of her labour, which we were able to devour in the break.

The speeches were then ably evaluated by Dave H, Simon and Riya.

During the break we tried Annelise’s crepes and plenty of chocolate ginger, double Belgian choc and Raisin biscuits to celebrate the end of year.  Annelise, you’re a great cook!

After the break Adam led the Table Topics.  He chose books as his theme, especially Harry Potter books and asked some interesting questions about characters from the books.

The Topics were all ably evaluated by Georgina, who gave the speakers some useful feedback.

The General Evaluator was Jenny A, who made some useful comments about how we run the meetings and made some suggestions for improvement.  She reminded us of the Club Mission, which is to provide an encouraging environment to our members so that they can develop their speaking and leadership skills and grow in confidence.  Jenny said that we had achieved our mission this evening – which is good to know!  She stressed the value of the hospitality role and recommended that those doing this role should be given top priority for a table topic as an incentive for doing it.

Then onto the Awards.  Alistair won the Table Topics award with a speech about “Lord of the Rings”; Dave H won the Best Evaluation Award for his evaluation of John’s speech and Alex won the Best Speaker Award for his speech about Internet dating.

Paul then presented some ribbons.  First of all to new members, then for giving the Ice Breaker speech, Half- Way to completing CC and for completing the CC Manual.  Finally he presented a ribbon to John Cross for being the Most Improved speaker this year.  It was also noted that Alex has made considerable progress over the last month.

 

Paul then presented everyone from the committee with a “Thank You” note for their work during the past year, which has helped to make our club stronger, more vibrant and a club of excellence.  He especially thanked Jenny T and Richard M for mentoring him this year and Jenny A for her help.

A big thank you to all those who took on roles and gave speeches and helped to make the evening a great success.  Overall it was a meeting with great panache!

Next Meeting

Our next meeting will be held at the Bickley Manor Hotel on 6 July where we will be having a sumptuous meal, an entertaining after dinner speaker and the official handover to the new committee.  Watch out for an email from Jenny T with more details.

All tickets for the event have been sold so, if you missed out, book now for next year to ensure getting a seat!

Extra Meeting at Shortlands Tavern on 27 July

Our meeting on 27 July is an extra meeting to be held at the Shortlands Tavern.  Please ensure that you go there rather than our usual venue.

 

Paul Andreas, President, Bromley SpeakersB

Meeting Report – 15th June 2017

By Paul Andreas

On a warm summer evening Georgina, manning the Hospitality Desk,  gave an even warmer smile to welcome our members and guests.

Our Sergeant at Arms, Neil, started the meeting by telling us about the wonderful biscuits that he had bought us for break, so that we couldn’t wait to try them.  Thanks also to Simon, who brought in some extra special biscuits, which he donated to the club.

Neil then handed over to our President, Paul Andreas. Paul announced that he had been looking for ways to encourage each other and had updated the club’s website with some useful resources.

Our Toastmaster for the evening was Karen who introduced her team. Bryony was the Timekeeper, Alexis the Ah Counter and Derrick  the Grammarian.  They all did a wonderful job.

Georgina led The Warm Up by asking us to share things that we like to do this hot wether, which was very relevant.

Royston gave us a Hot Tip about setting goals, which is to act on a consistent basis with deadlines.  Don’t try to be perfect – just do it.

Our first speaker was Alexander with speech #2 from the CC Manual called “Life in plastic:  It’s fantastic?”.  This was an entertaining and informative speech about how the plastic industry has developed following the invention of Bakelite by Leo Baekeland.  Bakelite was the first synthetic plastic. 

Next was Riya with speech # 7 from the CC Manual called “Latest Love of my Life” which is her hoola hoop.   Riya told us how she was advised to take up hoola hooping to develop her abs, how she researched which of the three types were the best and then showed us some moves.

The speeches were ably evaluated by Alain and Richard G respectively.

After the break Vinu led the Table Topics.  She had thirteen topics in total, which gave everyone without a role a chance to speak

Alex had the daunting task of evaluating thirteen table topics, which he did very well.  Well done Alex.

Our General Evaluator for the evening was Paul L who gave us lots of useful feedback.

Our President, Paul A, presented the Awards. Neil and Alexis were joint winners of the Best Table Topics.  Neil’s winning speech was about, “Which day of Your Life Would You Want to Relive”.  Of course, Neil said it was the first time that he attended Toastmasters, ten years ago.  Alexis told an entertaining tale about the night that he got pulled over for speeding.

 

Paul then presented some ribbons to members who had recently completed their Ice Breaker speech or their Competent Communicator Manual..

Two of our members, Bryony and Alexander have recently married and Paul presented them with a card signed by all the members.  Congratulations Alex and Bryony.

Paul A then drew the meeting to a close by reminding everyone to come to the Annual Dinner at the Bickley Manor Hotel on Thursday 6 July.

A big thank you to all those who took on roles, gave speeches and helped to make the evening a great success.

News

Annual Dinner

This will be held on Thursday 6 July when our existing Committee will handover to our new Committee.  Tickets are going fast.  Contact Jenny Taggart and book up while you still can.  This is also our 25th Anniversary Dinner and we want to make it special.  We are hoping that some of our past presidents, past Area Directors and our new Division Director will be able to attend.

The venue is beautiful.  You can see it here:

https://www.themanoratbickley.co.uk/

Resources

We have updated our website Resources page with details of good videos and articles about completing the CC Manual.  You can see them here:

Useful resources

We also intend to create a new website page called videos and load up to it some videos of educational speeches that we have had at the club, such as Body Language and Table Topics.

 

 

 

 

Meeting Report – 1st June 2017

Our meeting was kicked off by our Sergeant at Arms, Neil, who then handed over to our President, Paul Andreas. Paul encouraged everyone by reading a passage, “The Journey of a Speaker” from one of his favorite books, “The Speakers Toolbox”.   The passage is reproduced at the end of this email.

Our Toastmaster for the evening was Richard G, who introduced his team. Vinu was the Timekeeper, Adam the Ah Counter and Nick, the Grammarian.  They all did a great job.

Annelise led The Warm Up by asking us to share a good habit that we had adopted this year. This got some interesting and useful responses.

Dave H gave us a Hot Tip about always having a back-pocket speech, which was very timely as two speakers had dropped out creating some last minute slots.

Our first speaker was Oscar with speech #6 from the CC Manual called “Sounds of Silence”, which has an objective of Vocal Variety.

Next was Paul A, with speech # 5 from the CC Manual called “Body Language”.  This was an educational speech about how to use body language in our speeches. Paul demonstrated how you can use your body language to increase your self-confidence.

The speeches were ably evaluated by Tony and Neil respectively.

After the break Richard M led the Table Topics with a twist.  He has a book called “The Book of Answers” and he invited members to the stage to ask a question of the book.  They then had to answer their own question based on the answer from the book.

So, the crafty ones asked the book a question that they knew a lot about to make it easier.

Simon evaluated the Table Topics and managed to evaluate twelve topics in only eight minutes. Well done Simon, especially as he was feeling tired after a really busy day at work.

Our General Evaluator for the evening was Eddie who gave us lots of tips and insights with his usual humour.

Our President, Paul A, presented the Awards. Susan and John were joint winners of the Best Table Topics.  There were no other awards as we had only two speakers.

A big thank you to all those who took on roles, gave speeches and helped to make the evening a great success.

After the meeting some of us went to the pub with Freddie who said that he had been impressed by the high standards of the speeches and the role holders.  That is praise indeed from someone with his experience!

News

The Shortlands Tavern

Members reported that they really enjoyed the meeting last week at the Shortlands Tavern and were happy to return there for more meetings.

The next meeting there has been pencilled in for Thursday 27 July to give our members more speaking opportunities and reduce the wait time for a speech.

Annual Dinner

This will be held on Thursday 6 July when our existing Committee will handover to our new Committee.  Tickets are going fast.  Contact Jenny Taggart and book up while you still can.  This is also our 25th Anniversary Dinner and we want to make it special.  We are hoping that some of our past presidents, past Area Directors and our new Division Director will be able to attend.

The Speaker’s Journey

Initially, most speakers are self-centred so that they are nervous about themselves – Will I remember the lines?  Do I look good, sound good?  How’s my language?  What techniques should I be thinking about? Do I have the right phrases?  Are gestures right?

Then, later, experience takes over and you move to a different level.  It moves from “me” to “the audience”.

Your over-arching goal becomes:  How can I serve the audience?  What can I share from my experiences and insights to serve them? To help lift them?

Speaking is a journey – you learn who you are: you become comfortable standing in front of audiences and share “stuff” (your stuff) to help them. The Speaker’s Toolbox, P94.

Resources

Here’s a great resource that I’ve found recently for anyone completing their CC Manual:

http://sixminutes.dlugan.com/toastmasters-speech-0-competent-communicator/

 

Meeting Report – 18th May 2017

By Jenny Andreas

 

Our meeting this evening was well-attended, had lots of energy and we were blessed with two special guests, Michael Abrey-Bugg our Area Director plus Freddie Daniells.

Annelise volunteered for the Hospitality role, and did a great job welcoming guests and  members with her charming French accent.

Our Sergeant at Arms, Neil, arrived to set up the room and to  open the meeting and then handed over to our President, Paul Andreas. Paul reported back about the District Conference and encouraged everyone to attend the next one, which is likely to be at Gatwick and easier to get to.

The Keynote speeches from Mark Brown and Mike Storkey had been especially encouraging.  Mike encouraged us to step up, step out and take the challenge by going for educational awards and leadership roles and then taking what we had learnt out into the wider community.

Our Toastmaster for the evening was Alex, doing the role for the second time and entertaining us with some of the skills that he has been learning in the Entertaining Manual.  For the theme of the evening he chose the Eurovision Song Contest.

Alex introduced his team. Neil was the Timekeeper, Jenny A the Ah Counter and Tony Smith  the Grammarian.  They all did a great job.

Riyah led The Warm Up by asking us to say or do something funny, which brought out some good jokes, a dance and laughter.

Vinu gave us a Hot Tip about being positive and using positive affirmations.

Our first speaker was Christine with speech #4 from the CC Manual called “One for the Road” about being stopped at a police check on the way home from the last meeting – a timely reminder to stay within the drink/drive limit.  Christine created an entertaining and well-crafted speech out of a mundane subject. Our  Toastmaster, Alex, disclosed that he had also been stopped the same night. Christine had not been breathylised but Alex was and he passed because he was within legal limits!

Next was Margot, also with speech # 4 from the CC Manual called “£5.40 to get in”   This was an entertaining speech about a business trip to a delightful village called Pontypridd in Wales.  Although her family originated from this village she had never been there before because her father believed that, “ I couldn’t go back there because I couldn’t bear to leave it twice!” This last sentence of her speech was powerfully evocative. As Alex so aptly pointed out this was a great speech about “her family trip down memory lane” 

Then Richard Green gave speech #5 from the “Speaking to Inform Manual” – “The Abstract Concept”.  It was about what would happen if we had a power cut lasting for nine days. Alex, our Toastmaster, summed it up brilliantly with one word – “apocalyptic”.    

The three speeches were then ably evaluated by Karen, Alain and Paul L.

After the break Susan led the Table Topics with some varied questions, such as “If you could be a colour which one would you choose?”, “If you ran the NHS. . .?”  and “If you could do any job…..? We got some entertaining answers.  Well done, Susan.

Richard Murray evaluated the Table Topics and gave us some insightful feedback.

Our General Evaluator for the evening was Freddie Daniells, fresh from competing at the District Evaluation Contest in Southampton.  Freddie has a lot of experience, having had roles from Club President up to District Director and gave us some very useful feedback.  He continued this in the pub after the meeting and offered to come back and put on an Evaluation Workshop for us.  This is likely to be sometime in October, so is a date not to be missed.  Listen out for further announcements.

Our President, Paul Andreas, presented the Awards.

Eddie Barnes and Curtis won the Best Table Topics.

Paul L won the Best Evaluation Award for his evaluation of Richard’s speech and Richard won the Best Speaker Award.

Paul A then drew the meeting to a close by reminding everyone about the extra meeting next week at the Shortlands Tavern.

A big thank you to all those who took on roles, gave speeches and helped to make the evening a great success.

After the meeting some of us went to the pub with Freddie who said that he had been impressed by the high standards of the speeches and the role holders.  That is praise indeed from someone with his experience!

Dates for Your Diary

Extra meeting at The Shortlands Tavern on 25 May 2017.  Sign up for a role before they all go.

Annual Dinner on 6 July when our existing Committee will handover to our new Committee.  Tickets are going fast.  Contact Jenny Taggart and book up while you still can.  This is also our 25th Anniversary Dinner and we want to make it special.

Meeting Report – 4th May 2017

By Jenny Andreas

Our meeting this evening was well-attended with plenty of energy and an air of expectation as we waited for the results of the Club Election.

Vinu did well in the Hospitality role, welcoming guests and  members alike.

Our Sergeant at Arms, Neil, arrived to set up the room and bring the biccies. Susan was busy setting up the projector and arranging props for the speakers She also found time to give training on EasySpeak to a new member.

Neil opened the meeting and then handed over to our President, Paul Andreas. Paul told us about a seminar that he had just attended the evening before with Mark Brown, the 1995 World Champion Speaker.  Mark had shared some excellent tips about how to write and deliver a speech.  Details of future events in and around London can be obtained from www.thelondonspeaker.com

Our Toastmaster for the evening was called Paul.  His name is Paul Goodhill.

Paul G introduced his team. Christine was the Timekeeper, Simon the Ah Counter and Vitu the Grammarian.

Our Timekeeper, Christine, explained her role and then proceeded to do a great job of keeping us to time.

Jenny Taggart led The Warm Up.  The question was: “What musical instrument would you like to be and why?” This got some interesting responses from double bass to harp and grand piano to trumpet.

Neil gave us a Hot Tip, which was, “Don’t say no” and revealed to us that he had just starred in a TV interview – he was famous for seven seconds!

Our first speaker was Alex Clarke with speech #3 from the Entertaining Speaker Manual called “There’s No ‘I’ in Team”.  Alex entertained us with a dance from The Office TV programme and gave us some great advice on how to survive boring office meetings – by playing Buzzword Bingo.

Next was Jenny A with speech # 6 from the CC Manual called “”Can You Give That Speech”   Jenny shared her journey from a shy, hesitant 8 year old to a confident teacher and Careers Guidance Officer and revealed that, despite having had a lot of experience in public speaking, she had learnt a lot in Toastmasters and was still learning.

Tony Smith gave speech # 10 from the CC Manual, the Inspirational Speech.  Tony entertained us with tales of bravery as he described the work of the RNLI

The three speeches were then evaluated by John C, Sue S and  Richard G.

After the break Bryony led the Table Topics with some great questions about “World Book Day”.  We got some interesting and entertaining answers.  Richard Murray wanted to be Ratty from the Wind in the Willows, Alex expounded the virtues of book shops and being able to explore book shelves, Alain informed us that the 10 hour film of Lord of the Rings did justice to the book. Simon Maggs gave a preference for physical books and defended the value of printing emails despite receiving criticism at work.  Susan Rayner enjoyed maths and figures rather than reading books etc. The number of Table Topics ensured that every member was given an opportunity to speak during the meeting.  Well done, Bryony!

Eddie Barnes then evaluated the Table Topics and had us in stitches with his great humour.  Well done, Eddie.  We hope to see you in the Humorous Speech contest in September.

Our General Evaluator for the evening was Vinod, visiting us from Coulsdon, who shared some useful comments with us.

 

 

Our President, Paul Andreas, presented the Awards. Simon Maggs won the Table Topics award for his entertaining speech about libraries and emails.  Richard Green won the Best Evaluation Award for his  evaluation of Tony Smith’s speech and Tony won the Best Speaker Award.

Richard Murray, Chair of the Nominations Committee, then led the Club elections.  Everyone on the Nominations Report was voted in unopposed.

Paul A then drew the meeting to a close by welcoming our two latest members, Chi and Alexis.  This brings our numbers up to 50.  We have a lively, vibrant club which people want to join.  However, we must cap our numbers now, otherwise there will not be enough roles and speech slots for existing members.  Guests who would like to join have begun to be put on our waiting list that John C is compiling.

A big thank you to all those who took on roles, gave speeches and helped to make the evening a great success.

Dates for Your Diary

Division Conference and Contest at Southampton on 6-7 May.

Extra meeting at The Shortlands Tavern on 25 May 2017.  Sign up for a role before they all go.

Annual Dinner on 6 July when our existing Committee will handover to our new Committee.

Congratulations to our new Committee!

Those elected are:

President: Susan Rayner

VPE:  Simon Maggs

VP Membership:  Margot Glover

VP Public Relations:  Alexanderz Kirykowic and Bryony Hall sharing the role

Treasurer:  John Cross

Secretary Christine Morrell

VP Mentoring: Alain Culos

Sargent at Arms: Adam Russell

 

 

Meeting Report – 27th April 2017

By Jenny Andreas

Our meeting this evening was an extra meeting, held in the Whyte Room, upstairs at the Ripley Centre.

Whilst not having the imposing grandeur of the Music Room, it was still a pleasant, cosy venue.

Annelise was excellent in the Hospitality role.  She arrived early, ready to usher members and visitors upstairs.

Then our Sergeant at Arms, Christine, arrived to set up the room and bring us some delicious biscuits.  The club’s ribbons were displayed with care and everything laid out well.

Soon afterwards Christine opened the meeting and then handed over to our President, Paul Andreas. Paul told us a story about Craig Valentine, the 1999 World Champion Speaker, who on his way home from winning the International contest stopped at a bookshop to buy a book about Public Speaking, so that he could continue to improve.

Paul then shared three books that he has read recently and recommends.  These are, “World Class Speaking” by Craig Valentine, “The Speaker’s Toolbox” by Brian Woolf and “Talk Like Ted” by Carmine Gallo.  Paul then left us with three words of encouragement – ABI, which stands for “Always Be Improving”.

Our Toastmaster for the evening was Jenny Taggart.  Her relaxed attitude matched our more relaxed surroundings and she brought much humour into the proceedings.

She introduced our Timekeeper, Paul Lynch, who explained his role and then proceeded to keep us to time, which he achieved, and the meeting ended ten minutes early!

The Warm Up, given by Vitu, was to answer the question: “What advice would you give yourself when you were ten years old?” There were some interesting answers including a callback to Paul’s ABI “Always be improving”.

Adam followed with his Icebreaker speech, “My First Match”. This told us of his excitement at going to watch Newcastle United play Derby with his dad.  He used some very eloquent language to describe the match. For example, he compared the black and white striped jerseys of the supporters to a migrating herd of zebras.

New member, Ritu, then entertained us with her Icebreaker speech titled “Seasons’ Greetings”.  ‘Seasons Greetings’ is also the meaning of Ritu’s name.  We were greeted in the different languages she speaks.  Her theme was about embracing change and we were told of some of her experiences in India before she came to this country last year.  As an advocate for change, she currently works at helping young people improve their confidence and communication skills.

Margot got us thinking about our lifestyles with Speech # 3 from the CC Manual.  She encouraged us to avoid chemicals in food, household products, cosmetics, tobacco and to exercise for 30 minutes a day, five times a week to maintain mental health in old age.

The three speeches were then evaluated by John C, Jennifer A and Richard M.

During the break we were able to enjoy our drinks and biccies in the comfort of easy chairs and a sofa.

Curtis led the Table Topics with some interesting questions such as ‘How would you define success?’, ‘ What did you learn last year?’ and ensured that everyone who wanted to give a talk was able to.

Recognition was given to Paul L who won the Table Topics award for telling us about the only time that he remembers getting angry. Richard M won the Best Evaluation Award for his  evaluation of Margot’s speech and Margot won the Best Speaker Award.

Our President presented an “Icebreaker Ribbon” to Adam and Ritu for completing their Icebreaker speeches.

Our General Evaluator for the evening was Tony Smith. Doing the role for the first time, Tony brought some insightful and useful comments.

Richard Murray, Chair of the Nominations Committee, then gave a report of who is standing for the Club Committee.  The elections will be held next week.  Anyone who hasn’t put their name forward yet, can do so on the night.

Paul A then drew the meeting to a close with a reminder to come to the District Conference on 5-7 May.  This will be an opportunity to hear some of the best speakers in the South East and attend some great workshops. There is also the Gala Dinner on the Saturday evening.

A big thank you to all those who took on roles, gave speeches and helped to make the evening a great success.

News

Our two guests, Alexis and Chi, joined this evening, taking our numbers up to 50.  That is great because it shows that we have a vibrant club that people want to join.  However, it is now time to cap our numbers and create a waiting list, otherwise there will not be enough speaking slots for our members.

Our District Conference at Southampton is  5-7 May.  Come along for all or part of it, if you can, and support Samir Malak who will be competing in the Evaluation Contest on the Sunday.

 

Dates for Your Diary

Club Elections on Thursday 4 May.

Division Contest at Southampton on 6-7 May.

NB Extra meeting at The Shortlands Tavern on 25 May 2017.  Sign up for a role before they all go.

Meeting Report – 20th April 2017

By Jenny Andreas

Paul Goodhill arrived early and was very helpful in taking on the hospitality role for which no one had signed up for. Our meeting was opened by our Sergeant at Arms, Paul Lynch, who did a great job of introducing the meeting and reconvening it on time.

Paul then handed over to our President, Paul Andreas.

Paul welcomed the guests and reminded us all about the upcoming Division Contest on Saturday 22 April and the District Conference in Southampton on 6-7 May and encouraged members to come along to them.

He then reminded us about our Club Committee elections, to be held on Thursday 4 May, which are a great opportunity to learn more leadership skills and to perform one of the tasks necessary for the ALB Award.

Our Toastmaster for the evening was Jenny Andreas, who told us that the theme of the evening was going to be “Goals”. (Dreams with deadlines.)  She encouraged us all to remember to get evaluated for roles and to have it dated at the back of the Competent Leader Manual. She introduced her team. Paul Goodhill, returning from an unusually cold holiday in Turkey, was Timekeeper.  Alain did a meticulous job as Ah Counter. Alexanderz, stepping into the breach at the last moment, did a great job as Grammarian encouraging everyone to use the word “Achieve”.

In her Warm Up, Margot got members talking and singing about music that made them happy.

Our first speech was titled “TEAM” by Annelise, which was all about Team Building.  As an ex-president of “Experience French” this is a subject that Annelise has some experience of and her speech was very timely, as we are in the process of nominating a new leadership team to the Club Committee.

Christine then followed with Speech # 3 from the CC Manual,  titled “Some Mothers Do ‘Ave ‘Em”.  This was a very entertaining speech about how Christine suffers from dyspraxia which affects her co-ordination. This makes for an eventful time when her family are all at home, bumping into each other.

Our third speech was by Alex C, presenting Speech # 2 from the Entertaining Speaker Manual called, “Philip Larkin Was Wrong”.

Alex gave us some entertaining reflections about one of Philip Larkin’s poems and was able to move away from the lectern and use hand gestures!

The three speeches were then evaluated by David Hampton, Richard M and Paul A.

After the break Simon led the Table Topics with some interesting questions about setting goals.

Recognition was given to Adam who won the Table Topics award for telling us how his goal to set up his own business led to a prestigious job in the video making industry. David Hampton won the Best Evaluation Award with his useful tips on dealing with stress when evaluating Annelise’s speech.  Christine won the Best Speaker Award  for her moving, personal story that engaged us with her sincerity and humour.

Well done, Adam.  He only joined us a few weeks ago and he’s winning awards already.

Our General Evaluator for the evening was Neil Pettigrew, who gave us some insightful feedback.  Neil gave a speech a few weeks ago about the importance of learning leadership skills at the club and completing the “Competent Leader” Manual.  This evening Neil attained the CL Award by completing the GE Role, Congratulations Neil!

Paul A then drew the meeting to a close with another reminder about the District Conference.  This will be an opportunity to hear some of the best speakers in the South East and attend some great workshops and the Gala Dinner on the Saturday evening.

A big thank you to all those who took on roles and gave speeches and helped to make the evening a great success.

News

Welcome to new member, Fran, who has just joined us.

The winner of the Division Contest Evaluations on 22 April was Samir Malak, our previous Area Director, and now a member of Clapham Connectors.  He will be representing our Division at the District Conference at Southampton on Sunday 7 May.

 

Dates for Your Diary

Our next club meeting will be held on Thursday 27 April in the Whyte Room at Ripley Arts Centre.  There are still roles available, which you can book up through Easyspeak.

Club Elections on Thursday 4 May.

Division Contest at Southampton on 6-7 May.

Meeting Report – 6th April 2017

by Sue Shaw

 

***Please note additional club meetings***

Our Sargent at Arms Neil, ensured that the room and our members were ready for lift off at 7.30pm.

Club President Paul A, warmly welcomed everyone.  For the benefit of members not present at the previous meeting, he mentioned changes that the club have put into place because of the large membership.  The changes follow.

  • The club is trialling extra meetings on the fourth Thursday in April and May. A meeting will be held upstairs in the Whyte Room at the Ripley Arts Centre on 27 April and at The Shortlands Tavern on 28 May in the Function Room, upstairs. (Check out Easy speak for speaking opportunities.)
  • Evaluators are not being invited to read out assignment objectives prior to speeches being delivered. These are already printed on the agenda so are easily visible by everyone.
  • The Hot Tip has been cut out of normal meetings.
  • Warm up responses are being restricted to ten seconds.
  • Club membership is being capped at fifty and a waiting list created

Our Toastmaster for the evening was the popular Richard Green who always leads with energy and enthusiasm.  He had words of support for everyone.

Dave H was in charge of the warm up.  His question was, “which famous person, past or present, would you like to invite to dinner?”  Responses ranged from the practical such as Paul Hollywood and Jamie Oliver, (so that they could do the cooking), to world leaders such as Nelson Mandela and Winston Churchill.

As usual, there was a very varied selection of subjects for the set assignments.  Both Georgina and John C were presenting their CC10. The purpose of this assignment is to inspire your audience.  Georgina with her speech ‘WHY’, shared lots of tips and advice on time management to allow us to achieve our goals and focus on what we want to do.  John C’s speech titled ‘Refugees – the lives we can save,’ was a very moving account of refugees and people that have made a difference to their plight.  It is very noticeable how both speakers have developed during their time at the club and we now look forward to them moving on to the Advanced Manuals.  Well done guys.

Our last speech, from Curtis, was his CC6 (vocal variety).  The intriguing title was, ’What is that in the corner?’  He then explained his research in finding out more about a mystery object.  There were good changes of pace and pauses during the tale to add to the suspense.  To find out more, ask Curtis at our next meeting.

The three speeches were expertly evaluated by David W, Paul L and Tony, with lots of commendations, useful feedback and interesting insights.  Paul L reminded us to use prior learnings such as vocal variety and gestures when we tackle more advanced projects i.e. assignments should be seen as building blocks rather than one off projects.

In the second half, Karen gave a very slick and confident performance as Table Topics Master.  She had a great selection of subjects pitched at the right level, which brought good responses and a lot of humour.  Some of the respondent’s word pictures were very memorable, especially Jenny T, which demonstrated the power of language and the imagination.

Jenny A managed the tough task of evaluating eleven mini speeches at her first time in the role.  She gave lots of praise and offered a number of suggestions for improvement.

Also tackling roles for the first time were Adam (timekeeper), John V (Grammarian), and our newest member, Ritu (Ah Counter).  All of them had prepared well for their roles and gave very good reports.  Taking on these roles or acting as an evaluator certainly keeps you on your toes and hones your active listening skills.

The timekeeper’s role is essential as it helps everyone to keep on track and avoid stealing time from other contributors.  If you are not sure about taking on this role for the first time, you can always ask for an experienced member to help you on the night.

John V’s word for the day was ‘Grateful’.  It seemed apt, because at the start of the meeting, our Club President had invited Neil P and Georgina to explain their roles on the committee.  He encouraged all members to consider stepping up for roles to the new committee.  We should all feel grateful for the work the committee does behind the scenes ensuring that Bromley Speakers continues to thrive.  Thank you, thank you, thank you.

The nominations Committee consists of Richard M, Annelise and Paul A.  If you would like to serve on the new Committee from 1 July then please talk to one of them.  They will be speaking to members to see who would like to serve and reporting the results at the Club Meeting on 27 April.  The elections will be held at the following club meeting on 4 May, when there will also be an opportunity to take nominations from the floor.

The new committee will take office at our annual dinner at the Bickley Manor hotel on 6 July.  Put this date in your diaries.  The venue is idyllic, the food is delicious and the company is superb!

At the end of the evening, General Evaluator Sue S congratulated everyone on an entertaining and educational evening.  The next meeting is on 20 April at 7.30pm at the Ripley Arts Centre.

Awards on the night went to, Bryony (Best Table Topic), Paul L (Best Evaluator) and John C (Best Speaker).

After the meeting a number of the members continued discussions at the local hostelry.

Dates for Your Diary:

  1. Extra meeting to be held at the Whyte Room, Ripley Arts Centre on 27 April. The Nominations Committee will report to the Club.
  2. Elections will be held on 4 May.
  3. Extra meeting in the Function Room, Shortlands Tavern on 25 May.
  4. Annual Dinner and handover to the new Committee on Thursday 6 July.

Meeting Report – 30th March 2017

By Sue Shaw

Jenny T,  acting as Sergeant at Arms, kicked off proceedings on time and handed over to Club President, Paul A.

Paul started by sharing the club vision, from the CC Manual, which is “to provide a mutually supportive and positive learning environment,  in which every individual member has the opportunity to develop oral communication and leadership skills, which in turn foster self-confidence and personal growth”.

He then shared with members the recent decisions that the Committee had taken to fulfil the club’s vision.  This includes the following measures to create more speaking slots, following feedback from members:

·         In future Warmup slots will be limited to 10 secs per person,

·         The Hot Tip will be dropped,

·         The Evaluator will no longer share the speech objectives because this information is on the Agenda anyway. 

This should create time for more Table Topics or a fourth prepared speech.  In addition the membership will be capped at fifty and a waiting list created to limit the demand for available speaking slots.

Paul also shared that the Committee was considering holding extra meetings in a local pub, perhaps on the fourth Thursday of the month, to create more speaking slots.  So, he asked the members if they would like extra meetings and whether they would prefer Monday or Thursday evenings.

Paul then handed over to the Toastmaster of the evening, the very experienced and professional Richard Murray, a Past President and Distinguished Toastmaster.

Alain provided an interesting warm up with members being encouraged to use their full vocal range from low note to high notes giving their name and describing how the spring weather made them feel.  Responses included, invigorated, excited, appreciated, optimistic and sweaty!!  (Two members had been motivated to go to the gym.)

We were then treated to three well-crafted speeches.

First Riya presented her CC6 titled ‘Which one are you?’, a very interesting speech questioning how one reacts to circumstances, using the example of the effect of boiling water, on an egg, potato and coffee bean.

Next up was Alex with his first speech from the Entertaining Speaker manual.  It was called ‘The day I met Michael Jackson’, and he had.  Wow!  All that was missing was some moon walking.

Finally Martin A did his CC1 ‘A chance meeting’. It was a confident performance, especially as this was his first Toastmasters assignment.  His story took us on his journey from BT sales, to scuba diving teacher, actor and family man.

The speeches were well evaluated by Karen, Paul L and Jenny A, with great observations and suggestions by them all.

In the second half Neil was in charge of Table Topics. He gave a clear, succinct explanation of Table Topics and was able to fit in eleven respondents.  Subjects included beards, art galleries, the twentieth century, nuisance phone calls, legs and the colour green. Sue as Table Topics evaluator had the challenge of giving commendations and recommendations to everyone within the set time.

Also helping out were Dave, John and Margot.

Dave was our Timer and displayed an innovative approach to showing the timing lights and demonstrating the ‘out of time’ sounds on his phone, when he explained his role at the start of the meeting.  No wonder he is the “go to man” for anything technical.

Ah counter, John V, not only gave individuals their totals but also had added up the number for the whole meeting.  Maybe a name to put forward as the next club Treasurer!

Margot, our Grammarian, chose “Invigorate” as the word for the day and provided a clear explanation of its meaning.  She also highlighted interesting vocabulary and clever phraseology such as ‘homeless or hipster’, ‘moths to the flame’.

John Cross was our General Evaluator and was doing the role for the first time.  He was upbeat, concise, to the point and gave us plenty of commendations and some recommendations.

At the end of the evening, Paul A presented awards to Martin A (best speaker), Dave (best table topic) and Paul L (best evaluator).

Paul then rounded off the evening by continuing the conversation with members about holding extra meetings.  It was decided to hold an extra meeting on Thursday 27 April at Ripley and then try one at Shortlands Tavern on Thursday 25 May, with a view to holding regular monthly meetings there if the first one is successful

Paul then announced that the Nominations Committee will consist of himself, Annelise and the Chair, Richard M, and encouraged people to stand for the Club Committee.  Jenny T then described some of the tasks that she does as Treasurer and encouraged members to stand for the role.

Paul then reminded everyone about the Club’s Annual Dinner on 6 July, where the  handover to the new Committee will take place.

The meeting was then reconvened to the Anglesey Arms where plenty more informal speeches were made.

 

Dates for Your Diary:

 

Saturday 22 April – Division Contest at Oxted Community Hall, Church St, Oxted, RH8 9NB

Thursday 27 April – Extra Club Meeting in The White Room, Ripley Arts Centre.

Thursday 25 May – Extra Club Meeting in Function Room, Shortlands Tavern.