Feedback – Video

How to Offer Quality Feedback

Feedback video

If you are like most new members of toastmasters, you may be apprehensive to be a speech evaluator. You may not feel that you are qualified to offer suggestions to other, more experienced members. You may be afraid that you will offend or hurt the speaker’s feelings if you point out something that you didn’t work for you.

These are common feelings for every toastmaster. New or experienced, we all need to be sensitive and effective when we offer feedback to others. Constructive guidance and feedback can help those giving the feedback as much, or more than those receiving it.

Have you have ever heard the saying, “If you want to really learn something… Teach it to others.” This is very true. When you learn to analyze the speaking skills of others and offer guidance on how they can improve upon those skills, you are learning what works and what doesn’t.

I have found that this has helped me to become a better speaker. Once I began detecting areas of opportunity in others, I found it easier to diagnose and correct my own weaknesses.

Take a look at this 4:53 minute long video and you will gain additional insights into helping others and becoming a better speaker yourself. Click this link for some great tips.

https://www.toastmasters.org/Resources/Video-Library/how-to-offer-feedback

Pathways Guide

Are You Interested In Becoming  A Pathways Guide?

Here is where you can start your journey.

Here are two links pertaining to Pathways Guides [1] Role Desecration and [2] Application for general information of prospective Pathways Guide candidates in District 65.

Pathways Guide – Role Description:

https://www.toastmasters.org/~/media/75BADD1508074CA09442A82ED522B134.ashx

Pathways Guide Application:

https://www.toastmasters.org/~/media/A6C4E1261793408AAD497584A498F729.ashx

The on-line accessibility to the “Pathways Guide Application template” [password protected shown below in the link] will be available for use by Pathways Guides candidates, at the appropriate time for our district roll-out.

https://www.toastmasters.org/education/pathways/volunteers/pathways-guides/selecting-your-pathways-guide 

Sam Mehta, DTM, PDG

Pathways – Chief Ambassador

District 65

Pathways Summary

Pathways – A Summary – by Sam Mehta, DTM, PDG

TI Pathways

Your Pathways Learning Experience:

In an effort to offer members improved opportunities to learn and grow, Toastmasters has revitalized our education program. Based on extensive research and member surveys, the program will offer:

  • Learning Paths tailored to personal and professional goals and relevant to an evolving global marketplace
  • New Technological Resources to improve speeches and support meeting roles
  • Mobile Access to educational materials (laptops, smartphones and tablets)
  • Expanded Video and Digital Content to facilitate learning among our global community of members

There Are TEN Possible Paths for Learning:

  • Motivation Strategies: Build motivational leadership and communication skills
  • Presentation Mastery: Build public speaking skills
  • Leadership Development: Build communication and leadership skills
  • Innovative Planning: Build creative project management and communication skills
  • Visionary Communication: Build innovative communication and leadership skills
  • Strategic Relationships: Build networking, leadership and communication skills
  • Dynamic Leadership: Build strategic leadership and conflict resolution skills
  • Persuasive Influence: Build skills to lead in complex situations
  • Effective Coaching: Build interpersonal communication, leadership and coaching skills
  • Team Collaboration: Build collaborative leadership skills

These areas of learning are based on the Core Competencies in the program which are:

  • Public speaking
  • Interpersonal communication
  • Leading and managing
  • Leading strategically
  • and Building Confidence

Pathways Levels

Individual learning paths will have five levels, each increasing in complexity. DTM will remain as highest achievement and will require completion of two learning paths. The levels are:

  • Level 1: Mastering Fundamentals
  • Level 2: Learning Your Style
  • Level 3: Increasing Knowledge
  • Level 4: Building Skills
  • Level 5: Demonstrating Expertise

Path to Distinguished Toastmaster (DTM)

  • Completion of two learning paths
  • Serve as club officer for 12 months
  • Serve as Club Mentor or Club Coach
  • Serve as Club Sponsor or conduct Speechcraft or Youth Leadership Program
  • Serve as district officer for one year or Pathways Guide/Ambassador for six months
  • Complete Capstone DTM project

Distinguished Club Program (DCP) Education Goals

Pathways DCP Education Goals

  1. Four Level 1’s
  2. Two Level 2’s
  3. Two More Level 2’s
  4. Two Level 3’s
  5. One Level 4
  6. One Level 5

Transition DCP Education Goals

Select 6 of the following 12 goals:

  • Two CC awards                                        or         Four Level 1’s
  • Two mores CC’s                                       or         Two Level 2’s
  • One ACB, ACS, or ACG award                or         Two more Level 2’s
  • One more ACB, ACS, or ACG award       or         Two Level 3’s
  • One CL, ALB, or ALS award                     or         One Level 4
  • One more CL, ALB, or ALS award            or         One Level 5

Current Education Program:

The current paths [CC, ACB, CL, etc.] will be available for at least 2 years after full roll-out in each district/region. Toastmasters joining clubs after the roll-out will start using Pathways immediately.

Pathways – May 2018

Pathways Coming to District 65 in May 2018

By Sam Mehta, DTM, PDG

Sam Metha

Per the recent announcement (Oct. 10, 2017) by Toastmaster International, the Pathways rollout in Region 9, which include District 65 and five additional districts, is estimated to take place in May 2018.

There are eight separate Regions that plan to have their respective roll-outs, starting December 2017 through April 2018. Regions 8 & 9 are the last two Regions that will have their roll-outs planned in May 2018.

Some of you may know, that District 57 in Northern California along with District 27, in the Baltimore/Washington D.C. area and District 51 in Khulna Lumpur, Malaysia, were among the first “pilot” districts where Pathways was rolled out in Feb., March and May 2017, respectively. The pilot program in these three districts was successfully completed in September 2017 and a large number of Toastmasters are already using Pathways in these three districts.

The selection and appointment process of ‘Pathways Guide” will begin approx. 3-1/2 months before the district roll-out date. The club visitation visits and virtual support session will begin approx. 6 weeks before roll out.

There are numbers of Pathways related materials and videos available on TI’s website. Toastmasters in D-65 are encouraged to visit TI’s website and see the latest information and videos posted by fellow Toastmasters who are already experiencing the Pathways educational programs and their benefits.

Here are some of the testimonials from fellow Toastmasters, sharing their personal experiences. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hPHILN_rjZo

There are several other pertinent videos available on TI’s Pathways website, showing for example “How to download your Pathways Manual.” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XXR-BO6E7qM

The Base Camp: The tools for your learning experience, including on-line assessment and tailoring your learning and meet your interest. https://www.facebook.com/georgedmarshall/videos/10154176158301188/

Visit https://www.toastmasters.org/Pathways-Overview and watch COO, Sally Newell Cohen’s 5-part videos on Pathways.

Also please review the FAQs on TI’s website. They are frequently being updated by TI, as new questions and concerns are being addressed.

Once the Pathways roll-out date for D-65 is finalized (currently planned in May 2018) members perusing various educational awards will have a 2 year transition period (through June 30, 2020) to complete. All new members joining D-65 after the announcement of the roll-out date will automatically go into Pathways educational program.

Pathways is finally coming to District 65 and I hope everyone is excited to receive and embrace it.

Sam Mehta, DTM, PDG

Chief Ambassador – Pathways

District 65

October 20, 2017

Big Distraction Meeting

Fun Meeting Ideas

By Keith Maderer, Club Growth Director

The Big Distraction Meeting

Distractions

While most toastmasters meetings are orderly and welcoming, in real life, speaking to groups can be more challenging. Dinner meetings, meetings with children in the audience, meetings with construction going on outside, cell phones going off, people talking in the back or even hecklers can all be disruptive to a speaker’s “flow”.

But the reality is… it happens.

So if you want to prepare your fellow members for the potential distractions they could encounter, a Big Distraction Meeting can be a lot of fun.

Download some random sounds, noises, crying babies and other potentially distracting noises which can be played back during the meeting.

Appoint a couple of members to deliberately have a side conversation, mildly heckle or otherwise distract the speakers, evaluators and others during their presentations.

Watching members handle distractions can be humorous and entertaining, but will also be a great learning experience for everyone involved.

Be sure to warn each member before the Big Distraction Meeting and make sure to inform any guests that this will be happening on purpose.

As long as the distractions are thought out in advance and properly planned, everyone should have a fun time, learn a little more about tolerance and truly appreciate that “positive and mutually supportive environment” of your regular meetings.

Paving Road To DTM

Paving the Road to Distinguished Toastmaster (DTM)

By Dan Ferens, DTM

Dan Ferens
With Pathways coming early next year, Toastmasters will only have 24 months after that to get a DTM under the current educational program. Since DTM is the only rank that carries over into the Pathways program, quite a few of you in District 65 have shown interest in getting it. We are doing several things to help.

First of all, there is a group that meets once a month on Zoom to discuss various activities and to address any questions anyone has. The next meeting is Sunday, October 15, 7:00-8:30 PM, and will feature a presentation on “planning a DTM using a personal DTM mentor”. There will also be a Zoom meeting on November 19. If you want to join the group, please send an e-mail to Dan Ferens, the group leader, at DTMDanF@yahoo.com. Dan will also answer any questions you have via personal e-mail.

Second, there are resources available. The District 65 web site has a tab “Path to DTM” which will include useful information, including a paper titled “Paving the Road to DTM” that addresses some questions Toastmasters often have. Also, there is a 29-page ”Road to DTM” document available on the Select Toastmasters club web site; the link is http://selecttoastmasters.toastmastersclubs.org/. There is also an appendix on selecting advanced communication manuals.

If you are working on your DTM, take advantage of what is available. Of course, many members of our District are always willing to help.

We’d like to invite and challenge you, our advanced toastmasters to take that extra step to earn your DTM before the change. Then you can earn another with the Pathways Program moving forward.

Mingling Open House

Mastering Mingling at an Open House

By Carina Paton

Carina Paton

Yet another wonderful opportunity to practice your mingling skills is nigh. That’s right, it’s Open House season again! As a club member, you have one of the most crucial roles at your club’s upcoming open house… to float and interact with guests.

Every club is unique because it is composed of unique individuals. And because you are one of those individuals you are the ideal spokesperson. Is your heart suddenly aflutter because you have no idea what to say to guests? Never fear, your mingling mastery guide is here!

By simply attending your club open house, you move up the mingling mastery ranks from a Notworker to a Safety Networker. I encourage you to use this upcoming event to push yourself to progress the next level in mingling mastery, which I call a “cabinetworker.”

The cabinetworker takes standard items that are stored on the shelf in their cabinet and uses them to help network. These are the building blocks that can help you make a new connection. Standard items many cabinetworkers have on their shelves are:

· Hi, I’m (name). And you?

· What do you do for a living?

· Where do you work/study?

· Where are you from?

These are great questions to pull out when you are making your first courageous foray into mingling. They are easy to ask, and because they are so commonly asked, generally easy to give a well-rehearsed answer to.

In the open house environment, we can stock much more valuable questions on our cabinet shelves:

· How did you learn about us?

Not only is this an extremely easy question to ask and answer (and therefore an easy way to begin a conversation), it’s a simple way to find out what marketing and outreach methods are working for your club.

· Why did you decide to come to our meeting today?

Asking about a guest’s motivations help us frame how we can help them. Rather than rattle off the myriad ways that Toastmasters is beneficial, it’s much more effective to listen to the guest’s motivations for coming, and then aid them in understanding how your club can help them meet their goals.

· What did you think about our meeting?

Asking this question one-on-one helps threefold: 1. It gives us immediate feedback on meeting from the perspective of a guest. 2. It gives the guest an opportunity to practice giving an evaluation in a non-threatening environment, and they feel that their opinions are heard and valued. 3. It can often serve as a bridge to further conversation on an aspect of the meeting or the club that they are interested in.

· Can I answer any questions?

Remember that guests are in an unfamiliar environment, and they may be afraid to speak up. Asking this lets them know that it is okay to ask questions. Even if they can’t think of any questions right at that moment, it lets them know that you are willing to help them understand what Toastmasters is all about.

· Would you like to join our club?

This is the question that guests are often waiting to be asked, so don’t be afraid to put it out there!

Now that you have the tools to be a proficient cabinetworker at your upcoming open house, go and give your club all that you have. And remember: You can practice these mingling questions year-round. Every time there’s a guest at your club meeting is one more opportunity to push the boundaries of your comfort zone that little bit further. You might be surprised just how flexible those boundaries can be!

This is the third installment of a series encouraging fellow District 65 Toastmasters to take every opportunity to develop their mingling skills. The first two articles are Making Large Groups Less Scary and Push Past Your Safety Net.

Pathways Brave New World

Pathways To A Brave New World

By Keith Maderer, DTM

As we move into the new world of digital communication and presentations, we have to look forward and embrace the way our technological innovation is helping us make life easier.

Well your new Toastmasters Pathways Program is doing just that. Here are the ten pathways that you can follow on your journey into the future. I am excited to begin these new projects and learning new, different and better ways to communicate.

TI PathwaysSome of the Dynamic New Projects include:

  • Podcasting

  • Ethical Leadership

  • Blogging

  • Conducting online meetings and more!

Every member will have their own Base Camp online that will feature the following:

  • Engaging videos that model skills that you are learning

  • Opportunities to earn and award digital badges

  • Interactive quizzes and activities

  • Ability to share feedback online

As we move into next year, you will have the opportunity to explore this new Pathways program and start energizing your new skill set. Learning is a lifetime event.

When you stop learning… you stop thinking… and you stop growing.

I don’t know about you… but I am not ready for that yet.

For more information about the Pathways Program, click here:

https://www.toastmasters.org/Pathways-Overview

 

Using Visual Aids

Video: How To Use Visual Aids

by Toastmasters International

Video- visual aids

Using visual aids can be a great way to get your message across, but don’t rely on them as a cheat sheet. Your audience wants to hear your insights, stories and expertise. Not read it on the screen.

Learn how to effectively use visual aids and make sure your next presentation is a success! Here is a link to a great video directed by Toastmasters International. Take a look and learn how to use visual aids… better.

Click the Image above or this link to watch the video:

https://www.toastmasters.org/Resources/Video-Library/how-to-use-visual-aids

Clueless in Vancouver

Clueless in Vancouver

by Keith Maderer, DTM, Club Growth Director

Ellen, Lillian and I spent 8 days in Vancouver representing our district in officer training, interviewing international officer candidates, working the International Speech Contests and voting during the TI annual business meeting.

Trio with Jonathan Brooks

This was my first Toastmasters International Convention… so I had no clue what to expect.

Every day was filled with training, workshops, interviews and activities from 8:00 am until 10:00 pm, but we did find time to talk, share, get to know each other and bond as a team.

We met toastmasters from all over the world, supported our District 65 International Speech contestant – Jonathan Brooks and learned some best practices from some of the most successful district officers in the world.

Jonathan Brooks did a great job presenting his speech and while he did not advance to the finals, he represented District 65 with pride and excellence. There we 100 semifinalist from every area of the world and each speech that we witnessed was as good as the next.

I personally watched 40 speeches, including the top 10 finalists. I can tell you without a doubt… this Toastmasters “Stuff”… really works.

As our week was winding down, we heard word about Hurricane Harvey heading toward the gulf coast of Texas and Louisiana. Many of the district officers at the training and convention were from those areas of the United States. We were lucky to come home tired, enlightened and ready to get back to normal life.

Many of those Texans are still struggling with the aftermath of the Hurricane and it makes you feel lucky to be in Central and Western NY… where snow comes and then it melts. Aside from hurricanes, wildfires, tornadoes and mudslides, many toastmasters from other countries have to deal with governmental oversight, censorship and even the military attending their toastmasters meetings. It put life, toastmasters and freedom of speech in proper perspective.

The entire trip was an experience that I will never forget and I hope each of you can attend a Toastmasters International Convention in the near future. It will open your eyes, teach you the value of freedom and build empathy and character beyond your expectations.

In the coming months, we will share many of the new marketing, club building and district success strategies that we learned.

We appreciate your continued support and help in making District 65….

Better Tomorrow Than It Was Yesterday. Thank you.