Friday, February 26, 2016

Feb 23rd 2016 Theme - Leadership

“The first step in leadership: I look for what needs to be done. After all, that’s how the universe designs itself.” ~~ R. Buckminster Fuller

Welcome to the fourth meeting in February.

                               Barb was our toastmaster of the day.

The GAT(e) team comprised of: Grammarian – Jung [intuitive], Ah Counter – Lynne, Timer – Warren.

Dave was the first speaker of the day. He completed Project #7 from the CC Manual – Research Your Topic. Title of his talk “Should I buy a Used Alternative?” which he completed within 7 mins.

Through his talk, Dave shared with us his research and reasoning behind buying a used electric car to replace the oldest minivan of the family, which has almost 200,000 miles is ready to retire. 

Based on his research, the pros of choosing a used EV is the less cost involved, less maintenance due to the absence of transmission, exhaust etc. which makes it simpler than a hybrid and reduced impact on the environment. The cons include limited mileage on a full battery charge, the battery life and the need for a 240V home charger which needs some investment upfront. Dave also gave us tips on how to extend an EV's battery life.

While Dave is totally up for buying a used Nissan Leaf for a reasonable budget (the most popular EV in the current market), his children are more inclined on getting a far more expensive Tesla (the runner-up in the market). 

Amritha was his evaluator. She appreciated Dave’s effectively organized talk which he tied in with the power point presentation. His topic was well researched, supplemented with support materials - real time data, charts and graphs from genuine sources. As a suggestion, Amritha offered Dave to use more stage space and gestures.

Our second speaker was Dan. He completed Project #3 from the CC Manual – Get to the Point. The title of his speech “Books that have Influenced My Life” which he completed within 7 mins.

Through his speech, Dan shared with us how he bid farewell to his dislike for reading. After attending seminars and listening to great speakers talk about their inspirational books, Dan was encouraged to develop the life-changing habit of reading.

He shared with us 3 books that have had the most impact on him.
1.  Mindset: The New Psychology of Success by Carol Dweck  – The author encourages readers to have a growth mind -set (I can do it mentality) than a fixed mindset (lack or failure mentality due to external factors). This book has greatly influenced Dan's parenting skills. By praising the effort that his child puts to achieve a task or milestone, he is able to better instill the growth mindset in his child.
2.  Eat That Frog by Brian Tracy – A book emphasizing productivity and staying organized, this book has helped Dan to stay on top of things that he is not very inclined to do. By tackling his least favorite tasks first thing in the day, he is more productive.
3.  The Happiness Advantage by Shawn Achor – After reading this book, Dan consistently does at least one thing that he truly enjoys every day. In addition, he journals in the mornings and reflects back on his day at night.

Thus, developing this one habit of reading consistently has greatly and positively influenced Dan’s life for the better.

Jim was his evaluator. Jim was impressed by Dan’s well-organized inspirational speech. Dan clearly met the objectives of the project, by sharing his techniques. Jim acknowledged Dan’s confidence and relaxed demeanor on stage. As a suggestion, he offered Dan to reduce the informal words in his speech.

Jim was voted the best evaluator.

Anisha was our third speaker of the day. She completed Project #6 from the CC Manual – Vocal Variety. Title of her talk “Stay On Saddle” which she completed within 7 mins.

Through her talk, Anisha shared with us how her previous system of reward and punishment to raise her 2 boys were failing terribly. Though she wanted the best for her children, she didn’t know any other approach. That’s when she came across the book “Parenting from Your Heart” by “Inbal Kashtan” which has taught her a whole new way of compassionate parenting and communication.

The author of the book suggests checking in with one’s feelings in the moment before approaching children. Anisha wonderfully enacted out an incident showing how she tackled a situation with her 4-year-old boy who was annoyed at a butter jelly sandwich and threw it down to the floor because the other side was not buttered. Being consciously present in the moment, taking deep breaths and checking in with her own feelings, Anisha approached her son, provided him with choices and was finally successful by her 3rd attempt at convincing her little boy to clean up.

Anisha was voted the best speaker.

Julie was her evaluator. Julie congratulated Anisha on her well-enacted speech with a captivating storyline. Her body language, vocal variety, pitch and tone of her voice – were all admirable. By including appropriate movements and gestures, Anisha showed how engaged she was in the story.

Our table topics master was Nancy. She brought party bags with one item in each bag. The table topics speaker was required to talk about that item in the bag.

Pauline's bag had a wooden dragonfly. She spoke about how neatly it was decorated clearly by someone with lots of imagination. She noted that such wooden dragonflies were available in plenty in the past, whereas nowadays they are rarely seen.  She is always intrigued by the folklore around these creatures.

Robert's bag had a big swirl candy lollipop. Robert chooses to name it an “all day sucker” or “victim candy”. Having never eaten such a huge candy, he is sure one would need a plate while trying to consume it. He would definitely give it as a gift to people who talk a lot. J

Tobias got a measuring tape to speak about. He pointed out a measuring tape has many uses – the obvious one being measuring. He would also consider giving it as a gift to a friend for a project.

Tobias was voted the best table topics speaker.

Members who attended the meeting numbered to 19 with no guests.

The attendees were: Amritha, Andrew, Anisha, Barb, Chizuko, Dan, Dave, Grace, Jean, Jim, Julie, Jung, Lynne, Nancy L., Pauline, Rance, Robert, Tobias and Warren.

Our active membership total currently is at 32.
Respectfully Submitted,

Amritha Imandi, Secretary
Public Speaking Northwest #9406


  1. Amritha, your strong focus and detailed account of our meetings are proof of your brilliant mind. You really know how to pay attention. As a result of your listening skills, you gave us this wonderful minutes/blog. Thank you so much.

  2. I totally agree with Jean, have an amazing sense for detail. And it's awesome that you really enjoy sharing your experience! Big thank you!

  3. Amritha,I also agree with Jean, you always provide us a beautifully detailed account of the meeting. Great Speeches this week...I was entertained and learned a lot!!

  4. Another great summary of a great meeting.