Our meeting on the 6th of December – Revisited

Despite a number of last minute changes to the agenda, London Victorians Toastmaster meeting on 6th of December was full of great speeches and incredible energy as always.

Our Toastmaster for the evening was Lorenzo, who is working in London for 6 months and has decided to join our club while he is here. Lorenzo is a Toastmaster in Milan, Italy and his experienced showed in coordinating a great meeting.

Lorenzo’s theme for the evening was Languages, and we heard every speakers dream language to learn in the future. Lot’s would like to learn French & Spanish and some would like to learn the language of love, and Klingon!

We had two Icebreaker speeches (the first speech in the Toastmaster Communications program) and they were, once again, delivered to an exceptionally high standard.

Dan’s speech ‘The Power of Ideas’ and Phill’s speech ‘Lesson’s learnt, Lesson’s Taught’ both showed the audience that these two guys have bags of natural skills to make future speeches great, and that they both have aspirations to use public speaking in their lives to inspire others in the future. No doubt they will!


Gary then gave us a project 2 speech and taught us ‘The art of an effective cold call’. A classic speech structure of Introduction, Body and Conclusion was used to show the audience what not to do, what should be done and to encourage us all to not be afraid of cold calling. Great techniques throughout the speech included using props and referencing others, all added to the delivery.

Our reunited member Eddie asked us to ‘Make the Time’ in our lives for things we might have left behind. Personal stories enhanced the effectiveness of the speech and his purpose was clearly delivered and inspired us all to take time for things other than work (and inspired us to vote for him because he won the Best Speaker ribbon).


Karen finished off the prepared speakers with another inspirational speech entitled ‘The Added Value of work’, using personal stories, references and body language to highlight how we should all consider how we should not take lightly the value of what we have, sighting the incredible feats of people with disabilities to achieve great things in the face of challenging personal circumstances.

More than just speeches

Our meeting also included giving feedback in the form of evaluations. Terry, Florian, Christophe, Nuala and Fahad all gave detailed, encouraging and useful tips to the audience about what was good and what could be improved in the 5 speakers speeches.

Fahad’s evaluation of Karen’s speech was the favourite of the audience and he won the nights evaluation ribbon.


Members and guests alike should take time to see & hear evaluations from our members, the things they notice that are worth commendation and the tips for improvements should be considered by everyone in their own speeches.

Our Table Topics section was skill fully handled by Cleo, with a theme inline with the meeting of languages. With no prior knowledge of the subject coming their way 5 speakers came to the stage a gave 2 minute speeches about language and hit us with humorous and informative impromptu speeches on the subjects.

Particularly notable was John, who would like his future partner to speak French, because of the way that anything spoken in French sounds ‘sexy’. He won the Best Table Topic ribbon with his humorous effort.


Robert gave the table topic speakers a set of encouraging evaluations. Skilfully navigated his way through 5 evaluations in a few minutes and gave great tips on what everyone can do right in this section.

Rounding of the meeting we have feedback from our Grammarian, who’s word of the day “foible” was used by an impressive amount of characters and recommended everyone replaces filler words with a …….. pause.

Our ‘hark master’ Diane prepared some brilliant and challenging questions from sections of the meeting to check on the audiences listening skills.

Time was carefully recorded by Caleb and he held back from the bell for our stand in GE John, who gave an exciting set of feedback for the functionaries and in particular started a new trend and London Victorians by describing evaluators commendations as the ‘bun’ and recommendations and the ‘meat’ in a a feedback sandwich.

A great meeting as always!

Preview – Meeting at London Victorians on December 6th

Our meeting on the 6th of December promises to be exciting, two members are taking their Icebreaker speech, the first speech from the Competent Communicator manual (good luck Dan & Phill)

Gary is giving his CC 2 speech, entitled “The art of an effective cold call” which ‘might’ have a sales theme, which our president Terry will enjoy.

Then Eddie, who had a 9 month break from the club is back with a speech entitled ‘Make The Time’, which we are grateful he has done in his busy life to get back speaking at our meetings. This will be a project 3 speech from the CC manual so expect him to get his point across.

Rounding off the prepared speeches with be Karen, giving a CC 5 speech. Some clubs give a ribbon for speech 5 called the “Half Component Communicator Award’, we do not give the ribbon because no doubt you will see that Karen is certainly not ‘half’ a good speaker, with a speech entitled ‘The added value of work’.

Great titles, can’t wait to see & hear the speeches in action.

Of course there will be evaluations & table topics to complete another amazing meeting at London Victorians

Club Notices        

The new year always sees a renewed push from everyone to push their Toastmaster journey on, please make sure you are lined up with speeches on http://toastmasterclub.org/ and check back through club emails about the new waiting list system we have in place. We encourage everyone to have a speech ready in case of cancellations from other members.

If you need any help getting speech slots or roles in the agendas please email Eleanor G & Nuala our Vice Presidents of Education for advice.

Combined with the survey we have been running, Fahad is also starting to compile a list of everyone’s Toastmaster career goals, this will help everyone get the most out of their membership so please watch out for that and reply promptly.

Calling all budding bloggers, we are also looking for people to contribute content for this very website. You can learn to write engaging content, use the piece for your own portfolio and perhaps help your own website with SEO. If you would like to take part please email Stephen.

Only 3 meetings in December so let’s make them awesome!!!

What’s Your Purpose? Follow up to the workshop

During Ernesto’s recent workshop at London Victorians he spoke about an exercise involving a list of questions to help you find your purpose. You can download the exercise below, it also includes a list of further resources.


If anyone has any follow up questions for Ernesto then you can ask them in the comments on this page. This way Ernesto can go through all the question at once and everyone can benefit from his answers.

A big thank you to Ernesto for giving up his time for free. I’m sure many of you will be interested in taking a look at his website http://www.expanding-leadership.com.

Toastmaster Meeting – Inspirational Leaders

On the 4th October Isabelle made her debut as Toastmaster of the Meeting in confident style. Isabelle had asked all speakers and functionaries in advance who their most inspirational leader or speaker was and why. She then used their answers whilst introducing them to the stage.

Prepared Toastmaster Speeches

The first speech was Karen who spoke about the “Gig Economy”. She talked about disruptive “market transforming technologies” and used the examples of eBay and Uber to paint a picture of what she believed was coming to the freelancer market. It was an informative speech talking about the risks and the opportunities to those involved.

Next up was Nuala who spoke about mindfulness. Nuala used a metaphor to explain what mindfulness was, she said “buses are like thoughts in our heads, we can let them go past or get on board”. She used visual aids in the form of photos of everyday items, such as washing up liquid, and taught us how we can practice mindfulness while doing the most basic chores.

The third speaker was Annabel who won best speaker for the meeting with her speech titled “A Short History of Fashion”. As a speech 8 (get comfortable with visual aids) Annabel used Powerpoint to help tell the story of Coco Chanel and her greatest rival Elsa Sciaparelli. She took the opportunity given by the subject to use rich and varied adjectives, talking about “innovative, imaginative – almost dreamlike” designs.

The fourth and final speaker was Warren who gave an adaptation of his recent humorous speech contest speech. He explained the reason he didn’t win in the contest was not because his speech was not funny but because the audience didn’t recognise his jokes. He therefore said he would helpfully hold up a sign saying “Ha” so we wouldn’t miss out. An innovative approach well worked into a funny speech on his predictions of our future relationships with robots.

Table Topics

The second half of the meeting Terry took the role of Table Topic Master. Continuing the inspirational leaders theme, he asked participants to imagine they were in certain leadership roles and to give impromptu speeches to further their cause. Eddie won the best table topic by acting the CEO of a naturist society who encouraged everyone to get naked for world peace!

Join us at our next meeting on Tuesday 11th October at St James the Less Church in Pimlico.

Linguistic Devices

I have been researching linguistic devices for my grammarian role at tonight’s Toastmaster meeting.

Tonight I will particularly be looking out for the following linguistic techniques.


An alliteration is the repetition of the same sound or letter at the beginning of each word, or many words, in a sentence.


Imperatives are instructions or orders. Used sparingly these can have serious effect on the listener. E.g. “You must listen carefully to what I’m about to say”.


A hyperbole is the deliberate over-exaggeration of something for effect. This could be for humorous reasons or to make something more memorable through dramatic effect.


A litotes is the opposite of hyperbole. The downplaying of the importance of something for effect.

Parallelism / Patterning

Parallelism or patterning is the use of patterns through repetition or the balancing of meanings.


An allusion is a figure of speech that lets the listener paint the picture for themselves.


The use of words and phrases that imply strong, harsh sounds within the phrase. These words have jarring and dissonant sounds that create a disturbing, objectionable atmosphere.


Placing a person, concept, place, idea or theme parallel to another so they can be compared or to highlight the contrasts.

There are many more linguistic devices, many with names that I find close to impossible to pronounce. See my sources below to explore further and impress the grammarian at your next Toastmaster meeting.

If you have any good examples of the above then please comment over on Facebook or below. I will update this post with any of the good suggestions.