Leadership, marriage and the ‘S’ word

Report by: Agatha Amachree

David the Toastmaster

It is 6.30 pm on a Tuesday evening and members and guests are arriving to London Victorians toastmasters meeting at Grange Wellington hotel. There’s a bit of networking before the meeting because you never know just who you might meet and what you could learn even before the meeting starts.

Vahagn speaking

The meeting starts at 6.45 prompt with our President’s introduction. Our president, Eleanor always opens and closes our meetings, she starts tonight with a quote from Henry Ford:

“Coming together is a beginning, staying together is progress, and working together is success”

before handing over to our Toastmaster of the evening. The difference between the president of the club and the Toastmaster of the evening is not much really (or you judge for yourself), they are both members and volunteers from the club, only the president is responsible for the running of the club all year and the Toastmaster is responsible for running the meeting for the evening.

Lucy speaking

Our Toastmaster David Scott talked about his year here at London Victorians and how he’s developed in confidence and finds that he speaks up more. He did a good job in the meeting tonight, first he introduces his helpers; the timekeeper, grammarian, harkmaster, sergeant at arms and meeting reporter (interesting titles aren’t they? Visit our club to find out more about these roles).

He explains the different parts of the meeting with the first part made up of three speeches and evaluation of speeches followed by a break and then table topics, and with that the first speaker is introduced, Vahagn with his speech titled ‘3 fundamentals for Dynamic Leadership’.

Vahagn gave us an excellent speech using his personal experiences

Networking break

in leadership and gave us the 3 fundamentals of dynamic leadership of self-leadership, influence and relationship.

Next we had a speech from Anna titled ‘Tying the knot’. Another brilliant speech from the pathway Engaging Humor and Anna accomplished this by giving us funny sketches of memorable moments from her marriage.

We had yet another wonderful speech from our third and final speaker Lucy, with her speech titled ‘The ‘S’ word’. You might as well get some inside knowledge since you’re here, the year Lucy stopped saying sorry was in 2018, Jan 2nd to be exact. So the ‘S’ word is Sorry and Lucy told us three ways we could cut down on saying sorry.

  1. Take it out of the first sentence
  2. Replace it with Thank you
  3. When you need to be sorry, say, okay, that didn’t go as planned, here is the solution …(insert solution)

Plenty of guests

After the speeches, each speaker gets evaluated by evaluators who are also volunteers and members from the club. Everyone in attendance get the opportunity to learn from what each speaker has done well and what they could improve on. Audience also vote on best speaker and evaluator for the evening.

That is followed by introduction and welcome of our guests, executed by the sergeant at arm, Paul.

After the break we return for the next part of the meeting, Table topics. This is the part for unprepared speeches lasting up to 2 minutes. We had nine impromptu speeches which all went very well, in fact so well, we had a draw and three speakers won Table topics and all guests. It is humbling that our club is so welcoming to guests that they feel comfortable to come on the stage and deliver a speech impromptu.

Best Speaker Lucy

Best Evaluator Jackie

The Toastmaster hands back club to president who then gives out the awards won this evening along with closing remarks.




Best Table Topics Nuala