Tuesday, January 21, 2014

At the Goldmine January 18, 2014

Goldmine welcomed new member Ankur, and guest Anu January 18, 2014.  Welcome! We are glad you were there, and hope we can all work together to become better communicators and leaders.

Gerry did a fine job jumping outside her comfort zone to be our Toastmaster of the Day. Congratulations for taking the plunge, Gerry!

We were a smallish group so we did some multitasking:  Serena was Presiding Officer and Ah Bell/Ballot counter.  Ray helped us get started with a thought and also served as grammarian.  We gave him some material to work with (interesting phrases, challenges in verb/noun agreement, ask/ax), even though none of us used the word of the day “acrid.”  I guess we did not want to raise a stink! Phyllis told a joke (of sorts) about silly exam answers and served as timer….AND was able to put together Best Table Topic in her response to our Table Topic Master Alex’s request that we “turn a phrase” by ending with the phrase he suggested, in this case “…can still turn out pretty much normal.”  Jerry also served 2 roles, explaining how men may find themselves in different circumstances when a woman “points a finger at her husband” in his Table Topic, and evaluating Cynthia’s presentation of “The Bethel Enrichment Center Scholarship” award.  Ankur entertained us with a brief story about lessons he learned as a youth in his Table Topic which ended with “We’ll never do that again!” Joyce presented a short speech “Bricks,” which challenged us to consider our goals for the new year, which surprised her evaluator Matthew with its brevity.

Eugene won Best Evaluator for his evaluation of Shyam’s longer than expected but informative speech “The Leader Board” where the new display of members’ progress and contributions toward the club Distinguished Club Program goals can be seen as a glance.  Shyam also took questions after his speech and as part of our business session about how the DCP goals work, and how Goldmine has been recognized at the highest level “President’s Distinguished Club” for completing at least 9 of the 10 goals for several years in a row now.

Sunitha served as our General Evaluator, also stepping out of her comfort zone.  Many of us find ourselves in the situation of having our words all leave us when we stand up to speak, but she did a creditable job, even though her hesitations earned her the Ah stick.

Cynthia received Best Speaker award; and she was honored in Shyam’s award ceremony for her “Outstanding Toastmaster” achievements for the 2012-2013 year, and recognized for her ALB. Shyam was also recognized for his ACS & ALB, and Joyce was recognized for her ACS & ALS achievements. 

Wow! That’s a lot of alphabet soup, isn’t it?! Shyam gave a handout in his speech that explained all the different award levels.  Ask an experienced Toastmaster for clarification and explanation, check out the Toastmasters International website, or look at the diagrams/explanations in your manuals.  Here’s a short version:  We all start out doing 10 speeches to earn the Competent Communicator (CC) award.  Other meeting roles and special events allow us to work through the 10 projects in the Competent Leader manual, to complete the CL award.  Beyond that, there are a variety of advance speaking manuals (5 speeches each), as well as other roles, projects and speeches that fit into the Advanced Communicator Bronze, Silver, & Gold (ACB, ACS, & ACG) levels.  On the Leadership track, again different roles, projects, speeches etc. are required to accomplish Advanced Leader Bronze or Silver (ALB, ALS).  Both tracks (4 levels in the communication track, 3 levels in the leadership track) culminate in the Distinguished Toastmaster (DTM) award. Goldmine’s current members who have the DTM award are Al Minter & John Shepherd. Joyce is close to completing her requirements, as well.

Next week, a number of our members will be at the Toastmaster Leadership Institute, which includes officer training, judges' training, and other informative learning sessions.  Ray will serve as your Toastmaster.

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