Talk For Change Toastmasters is a public speaking club in Washington, DC. We meet downtown on the first and third Wednesdays of the month. Many of our club's members work in the non-profit sector. We welcome social entrepreneurs and non profit professionals alike.
I may be training for a real marathon but I feel like it’s been a figurative marathon to complete the Competent Leadership (CL) manual. As I limp toward the finish line, I wanted to share some advice.
When I started out, I wish I’d known…
You Don’t Have to Do Everything: For the Competent Communicator (CC) you have to complete every part of every project. The CL is a bit different. While it’s still split up into 10 “projects,” each one has several meeting roles and you usually only have to do a few. Keep this in mind and be strategic as you schedule yourself for meeting roles. Use the checklist I gave to Talk for Change’s officers to help you figure out what you actually need to do. Believe me, filling out this checklist was a major turning point for me.
For some reason, many people have a fear of public speaking. Some dread as death itself! Gottlieb writes a good article about the role of public speaking in the classroom. As a new teacher, she faced problems communicating with her audience, the students.
And I was so nervous I couldn’t talk – not a word. My voice shook and my hands shook and I was barely able to apologize. I was paralyzed. After about 5 minutes, they let me leave. Still to this day, I am embarrassed when I think about it. A group of 5 women sitting around a table, a topic I knew inside and out, and I was struck dumb. (Gottlieb, 2004)
Deresiewicz states in his lecture to the United States Military Academy which was printed in The American Scholar in the Spring issue of 2010 that there is a rise in mediocrity, multi-tasking is bad, and that solitude & thinking are needed in leadership. The following excerpt from the article “Solitude and Leadership” sums up the dire need for individuals that have more than what is … Continue reading The Missing Piece : Thinking
While at a Model UN Conference in the Fall of 2008, I had the opportunity to see then Senator Chuch Hagel at the Columbia Political Union during a break between our simulation committee sessions for a Development Executive Board. The Senator was using his position as a U.S. Senator to travel around the country to speak on the topic of his book “America: The Next … Continue reading Teachers, Mentors and Role Models
Last Monday was Martin Luther King Jr. Day and those of us in the profession or oratory or the pursuit of oratorical perfection know by no stretch of an imagination that the Reverend had a voice of a Prophet and an eloquence that words cannot describe. The icon of Dr. King is one of a powerful speaker that changed the shape of history in his leadership of … Continue reading Analyzing a Speech: “I have a dream.”
All the rules of civility dictate that one must be quiet, listen and attend to the person with whom they are speaking with so that they may expect the same from them and others. Sometimes that is not the case. When a person is interrupted while in a conversation, they can handle the situation by waiting till the other person is finished before continuing again. … Continue reading How to handle Hecklers.
By Dan Zak
Washington Post Staff Writer
Sunday, February 18, 2007; M01
They are three strapping men in mid-career — a salesman, a real estate broker and an officer in the military. All are at ease around a table in a casual setting, but put them behind a lectern or in front of a crowd, and their breathing quickens. Continue reading “Scared Speechless?”