Wednesday, September 25, 2013

9/24/2013 Go Hawks!

The theme for today's meeting was "Go Hawks".  Jerry our Toastmaster shared many interesting facts about the Seahawks.  We learned that several of us are proud to be on the "12th Man" team. Jerry challenged us with many questions about our beloved Hawks. Lynne, our Sargent At Arms knew 99% of the answers. We had several absentees and a few last minute cancellations, but Jerry ran the meeting with skill and grace.

Our first speaker cancelled at the last minute due to illness, so Jerry asked Robert to fill in.  Robert shared with us the humorous presentation he will make at tonight's Area Contest. Robert did a fantastic job! The presentation highlighted Robert's wonderful sense of humor and his love for his daughters. We did a "round robin" for Robert's evaluation.  Seeing the improvement Robert. has made with this presentation, makes us confident he will do well tonight.  Good luck Robert!

Matt was our second speaker. His talk was tittled "The Conversation Stack Up." This was speech #2 from the Competent Communication's Manual. Matt immediately engaged the audience when he asked if we have ever been in a situation where we are trying to get to know someone and the conversation just stalls?  Matt gave us eight simple things to learn to keep a conversation flowing.  They include:
1. Learning the person's name and how to pronounce it correctly
2. Learning where they live
3. Learning about their family
4. Learning about their work
5. Learning about their travels and vacations
6. Learning about their hobbies and favorite forms of entertainment
7. Learning about their dreams and aspirations.
8. Conclude every new conversation with thanking the person for sharing with you.
Thank you Matt for this wonderful presentation.  We all learned ways to engage others in conversations.

Come join our conversation at next week's meeting. You'll be surprised by what you can learn! Guests are always welcome.



Tuesday, September 17, 2013

September 17, 2013

Today's theme was Abraham and Mary Todd Lincoln.  Kate was our Toastmaster today. Kate reminded us that the goal of Toastmasters was two-fold. To create competent public speakers which therefore creates leaders.  We are all called to be leaders. Some are out front such as Abraham and some are behind the scenes such as Mary Todd. Kate shared some uncommon quotes and antidotes about the Lincolns.

Today's first speaker was Karen. She gave talk #5 from the Competent Communications Manual. The tittle of her presentation was: Change your Questions, Change your Life.  Karen spoke on how to adapt a positve view when faced with challenges. There are two paths we can take. We can choose the "judger path" which is often a knee jerk negative reaction or we can choose a "learner path" which creates a win-win situation. Karen gave an example from last week's meeting. Pat was all set do his presentation using power point, but his computer failed. Pat could have chosen not to present because his equipment failed. However he rose to the challenge and made his presentation without his planned aids and it was very successful. Karen gave us a simple formula to remember:
Event + responsibility = outcome. Choosing the learner path over the judger path creates a positive outcome.

Kathy was our second speaker today. Her tittle was Evaluate to Motivate. Kathy spoke of the importance of evaluations. They are a learning tool, improve our speaking, boost our confidence and build self esteem. Kathy gave us several suggestions for being a good evaluator. They include taking good notes, giving personal antedotes on how the presetation affected you, choosing effective words and putting yourself in the speakers postion. Being a good evaluator benefits the speaker as well as the entire club. We are successful when we learn and grow together.

"I will prepare and some day my chance will come."  Abraham Lincoln

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

September 10, 2013   Theme:  A Cup of Coffee

Toastmaster Elaine explained that our club meetings are like a cup of coffee: they give us a little boost! When our confidence is increased it's like a little shot, it can give us energy to do things we might not otherwise be able to do. Sometimes just the smell of coffee can be so enticing and motivating. Just participating in Toastmasters in little tasks gives a taste of what we are truly capable of achieving.


Kate was our first speaker today. She entertained us on our coffee break by sharing a story by Max Lucado tittled: You Are Special.  Kate used a few props and showed great skill in jittering around the cord that was plugged in the middle of the speaking area. 

Pat was our second speaker.  He didn't let the jitters get to him when at the last minute his visual aides failed to work. Pat gave us great flavor of his professional expertise as a financial planner. Pat encouraged us to seek a rate of return of 10%. He talked about the financial challenges of babyboomers and gave us strategy for dealing with them.

Several guests joined us today which enriched the aroma of our cup of coffee. Pat Sultan, our area governor joined us to promote the upcoming contest.
Guests Alex, Radhika, Nanda came to learn what our club is about. We hope they will return. We can't promise a cup of coffee, but we will give your day a boost.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Public Speakers Northwest September 3, 2013 Theme: Contest Party!

Today instead of our usual structured meeting we had contests for Best Humorous Speech and Best Table Topics.  It was a fantastic event!  Jean Tracy, our club founder and current president ran the program.

We have a very talented club so we decided to celebrate along with having the contests.  Barb did a wonderful job with decorations.  She even made sure everyone had a little trophy.  There was tasty food including pasta, sandwiches and yummy cookies.  What made the party extra special were our guests and returning members. Maria, Ash and Maureen were guests today.  After being away for awhile, members Juliette and Lynne returned.

Jerry and Robert were set to compete in the Humorous Contest, however at the last minute Jerry was called away on business.  Robert though was the true winner with his hilarious stories of raising and connecting with his 2 daughters. Robert truly was a laugh a minute with seven funny points in a seven minute talk!

Pierce, Barb and Kate participated in the Table Topics Contest.  Each responded to the question:
If you had to attend a costume party tonight who would you dress up as and why?
Kate said she would dress up as the Good Witch from the East because when she did this 21 years ago she met her husband. Pierce said he would dress up as Jack Sparrow from Pirates of the Caribbean,  However Pierce mentioned if he could get out of going to a costume party, he would do so at almost all cost. Barb said she would dress up as Queen Elisabeth the 1st, her favorite historical figure.  Barb admires Queen Elisabeth for her power and her love of those she ruled.  Barb became royalty herself as she won the Table Topics contest.

Both Barb and Robert will represent our club in the Area Contest September 24th 5:30 PM in our location, The Seattle Times Building  19200 120th Ave. NE. Bothell WA 98011.  Join us and cheer on our winners.