Fellow Toastmasters, dear friends and guests,
We brought back to activity our Radiant Rhetoric Toastmasters club for the fourth Wednesday of the April month; the word of the day was reborn: spring is in the town!!!
What a pleasure to meet all of you and have this lab experience together. Oh yes, Toastmasters is kind of a laboratory [lab] where you are empowered to become more effective communicator and leader.
A big THANK YOU is going also to our dear guests:
Simona, Imran, Samad, Javad, Stefano, Gianpaolo, Giulia, Roberto. Remember, you are always welcomed! If you have further questions, please do let me know firstname.lastname@example.org
At Toastmasters “Education is our business. It has been so from the beginning.” Ralph Smedley, Toastmasters founder.
In our age of discontinuity, what does education mean to our younger members? 40% of our current club members are between the ages of 18 and 34. On his 80th birthday, on Febr.22, 19558, Dr. Smedley relied on the 19-th century English philosopher Herbert Spencer for the answer. Spencer held that “…education is a process of drawing out and putting into use the talents and abilities which are present in the person to be educated, rather than of pouring into his mind information from the exterior.”
Toastmasters is rolling out its largest and most important update to the education program since 1942, when the first basic training manual was developed (today we have the Competent Communication as a pillar manual). The revitalized education program stems from 2010 Strategic Plan and focuses on developing five core competencies:
- Public Speaking
- Interpersonal communication
- Leading and managing
- Leading strategically
- Building confidence
These competencies are learned throught experential education based on Dr. Smedley’s principle of “learning by doing and improving through practice and criticism.” From the confidence we gain through public speaking and interpersonal communication, we develop the habit of lifelong learning as well as the art of leadership.
By consciously performing our club and leadership roles, we have the opportunity to practice and internalize Toastmasters’ four core values: integrity, respect for individual, service to the member and dedication to excellence. These are also the four cornerstones of character and personality.
In this age where practically all knowledge is only a Google search away, our challenge is to train our young new members to reflect on this readily available information and practice the art of face-to-face communication to gain experience. This will empower them to achieve their full potential. More than ever, our youth need the service of Toastmasters as they venture into uncharted futures.