What is Toastmasters?
“For more than 86 years, Toastmasters International has been recognized as the leading organization dedicated to communication and leadership skill development. Through its worldwide network of clubs, each week Toastmasters helps more than a quarter million men and women of every ethnicity, education level and profession build their competence in communication so they can gain the confidence to lead others.
The world needs leaders. Leaders head families, coach teams, run businesses and mentor others. These leaders must not only accomplish; they must communicate. By regularly giving speeches, gaining feedback, leading teams and guiding others to achieve their goals in a supportive atmosphere, leaders emerge from the Toastmasters program.
The organization answers a new generation’s plea: Where can I go to become a better communicator and ultimately, a stronger leader? Toastmasters continues to build on its legacy by providing a strong foundation for the future. Its proven educational program continually evolves to address the needs of the world’s communicators and leaders both today and tomorrow. Toastmasters members learn to tell their stories. They listen and answer. They plan and lead. They give feedback — and accept it. Through our community of learners, they find their path to leadership.”
Who Joins Toastmasters?
Anyone over the age of 18 can join Toastmasters, provided they have the desire to improve their communication and leadership skills. Beyond that, Toastmasters members are a diverse group, in spanning countries and cultures, and from all socioeconomic backgrounds.
Where Do Toastmasters Meet?
Everywhere! Well, not quite, but the network of clubs is growing. Club members meet within corporations, community centers, university and college campuses, restaurants, libraries, and many other places.
What Do Toastmasters Do?
Most Toastmasters clubs meet weekly for 1-2 hours, and follow a pretty basic agenda:
- Prepared speeches – Members are given opportunities to prepare, rehearse, and deliver presentations in front of their fellow members.
- Speech evaluations – Whenever members speak they receive helpful and supportive evaluations from their peers.
- Impromptu speaking – Members practice speaking “off the cuff” for 1 to 2 minutes in each meeting by responding to general topics of interest (table topics).