Author Archive for Gerry


Club Officer Training Saturday 10th July 2010

After the success of the Thursday evening Training, the Bob Daniels Centre in Inglewood played host to the Saturday sesssion. With nearly 80 Club Officers in attendance, we were looking at record numbers. The format was much the same and here are some photographic highlights. 

Maree Pickens

Maree Pickens was the Toastmaster and she knew how to wield that gavel!

Robyn and Mark Richards

Mark Richards suddenly finds the Agenda very interesting as Robyn looks on

Mark Richards

Then Mark was up to tell us all about the TMI web site.

David and Glenis Nicholas

David and Glenis Nicholas were absorbed by Mark's Workshop.

Kristin McIntosh

Kristin McIntosh was up directing traffic or maybe she was workshopping the Distinguished Club Programme

Ross Wilkinson

Someone else was trying to hide, but we know who you are...............

Ross Wilkinson

...........................step forward Ross Wilkinson!

Lynette Delaine

Telling everyone about next year's Convention, "Swansong on the Swan" was Lynette Delaine

Lynette Delaine and Maree Pickens

Just before Lynette had been working hard behind the scenes with Maree Pickens

David Nicholas

Then there was David Nicholas showing us all the goodies on his Toastmasterswa site

Sean Pascale Vicky

Then there's the people you always find in the kitchen at parties!

Are the pies ready yet?

Well done to everyone, for a second, extremely well organised, session of Club Officer Training.


Club Officer Training Thursday 8 July 2010

On the day that Perth’s cold clear days was broken by wild and windy weather a new venue was used for Club Officer training and very popular it proved too. The new Victoria Park Club hosted the event at their venue at The Homestead in Mackie Street in Victoria Park. An attendance of up to 100 was anticipated but Club Officers kept rolling in throughout the event.

The Empty Hall

The Hall is set up and ready

Sgt at Arms Maree Pickens got things underway introducing the Toastmaster for the evening Peter Law whose sartorial elegance set the tone for the night.

Toastmaster Peter Law and Mark Richards discuss the Agenda before the meeting gets underway
Robyn Richards conducted the first session, “Creating a Buzz” which emphasised how important it was to get that essential ‘something extra’ into your meetings to make them fun and enjoyable. Robyn provided lots of useful advice to all assembled.
Mark Richards followed his wife to the front of the audience and used the IT display set up by Martin Lindsay to show Club Officers how to log onto and navigate around the TMI Website. Mark’s presentation was especially relevant to Club Officers who have to log returns with TMI.
Mark Richards with the TMI Website

Mark Richards shows us how to Navigate around the TMI Website

Inner City Divisional Governor Kristin McIntosh then explained to us all what the 10 goals were in the DCP (Distinguished Club Programme) and why they were so important to running a successful club. Like Robyn Kristin gave some hints and tips as to how the goals could be achieved and illustrated how easy some of them were by pointing out that everyone present was contributing towards their club’s DCP by attending COT!

Kristin McIntosh

That's goal number two that Kristin is telling us about!

Martin Lindsay as the Perth Governor then presented a Workshop on how to run Speech Contests. With the Club, Humorous Speech and Table Topics contests due in August this was very timely advice for the many new Club Officers in attendance. Martin pointed out some of the extremely good resources available and advised Clubs on how they could get their own members ‘up to speed’ on acting as Judges.

The last presentation before supper was given by David Nicholas and David told everyone about toastmasterwa.net and what resources were available on the site. With only 15 minutes to present David was only able to brush the surface but he certainly whetted the appetites for information if not for food!

David Nicholas

David Nicholas enthralled the audience with his sales technique for toastmasterswa.net

After a splendid supper, and you could tell it was splendid because there was nothing left, we were treated to an introduction to a “Swansong on the Swan”. Lynette Delane presented a talk about the 2011 District Convention, the last of District 73 with Western Australia included, which is to be held in Perth, hence the title.

Lynette Delane

Lynette Delane tells us all about the "Swansong on the Swan"

The meeting then moved on to a series of ‘break out’ sessions for each Club Officer Role. This proved to be the real ‘meat and veg'” for the new Officers as they were able to leverage off those who had performed the role before.

We were then welcomed back by Ross Wilkinson who told us all about “YOUR Future in Toastmasters” and Ross set out very clearly where the path towards becoming a better speaker, a leader and ultimately a Distinguished Toastmaster lay. Ross reminded everyone that by becoming a Club Officer they were on the first steps of this exciting leadership journey.

Ross Wilkinson

Ross Wilkinson reminded everyone of the importance of working to their Manuals and getting them signed off

Public Relations both within the District and within Clubs was covered by the ubiquitous Pascale Amberville-Colby, the man with more clubs than Tiger Woods. Pascale reminded everyone of the importance of their Website as a promotional tool and ensuring it was up to date. Pascale also related some initiatives that were being taken within WA.

Pascale Amberville-Colby

Pascale sought an affirmation from everyone that they would promote their club

The information and fun packed evening was wound up by Mark Richards relating the future Training opportunities that were available over the coming year.

Overall a fantastic evening packed with  information and with Club Officers. Well done to everyone but especially to Robyn Richards for her wonderful organisational abilities.


Getting your Contact Details right everywhere!

It was brought home to me today just how important it is to get yout details correct everywhere that your club has left them. My own club received a query on behalf of another club where a member of the public wished to join. How good was that? The fellow didn’t want to just attend a meeting he wanted to join. The problem was he couldn’t find any contact details that worked!

The details at TMI were out of date as were those on the Contact Us page of the web site. It was fortunate that I knew members of the club and eventually we were able to pass on details.

It was a salutory lesson in how important it is to keep those details bang up to date. Remember where you have lodged all your contatact details too. It’s not just the obvious places like your web site but also maybe in Libraries, with Councils and Community Newspapers.

I just can’t emphasise enough how important it is to keep those details up to date.


Driving your Club to success

 

The DCP. What is it, why is it so important and how can we achieve? 

In his Blog on 26 June “How to be Distinguished – Clubs, Areas and Divisions” David Nicholas spelt out what the DCP targets are for Clubs. Areas and Divisions. Think of the DCP (Distinguished Club Programme) as being like KPI’s (Key Performance Indicators) for Clubs, Areas and Divisions. Essentially they are driven by the Clubs, if the Clubs hit their marks the Areas and Divisions will follow. That is not to deny that the Area and Divisional Governor’s don’t have their own targets to achieve but they are mainly driven by ensuring the clubs are healthy. 

When you look at the structure of the goals the first four are aimed at Communication Awards and the next two at Leadership Awards. The next two are aimed at increasing Members at your club. Then we have a goal based on Club Officer Training and the final goal is concerned with Club Administration. 

If the Club Committee sets out a Club Success Plan early in the year and identifies when and how the goals will be met the battle is half over. The Area Governor should around this time be visiting the club and looking to see that the Club Success Programme is in place. 

The reason that all this is so important is that the DCP gives a pretty good indication of the health of their Clubs, Areas and Divisions. A club with a plan in place and starting to mark off the goals will be a vibrant successful club. The buzz of hitting those targets in well run clubs is almost tangible. 

So how do you achieve the goals? Setting out the plan is really important. Once individuals have been identified who will be achieving look to have backup plans. Sometimes for whatever reason members are unable to fulfil. Ensure that the members who are targeted to achieve awards are doing so and acknowledge them as they hit their milestones. As targets are achieved ensure that all club members know that you have achieved them. 

If the club remains focussed the DCP awards should be within your grasp.


Area Governor? What a year!

One year out, what was it like being an Area Governor?

 At first it was bewildering. Despite District Officer Training (DOT) and an exhaustive manual there just seemed to be so much to do.

First up after you have been trained there are two sessions of Club Officer Training (COT) you really should attend both sessions. You need to be there to support the clubs in your Area and to support the District Executive. You will probably find yourself volunteered to help somewhere. Remember also that each Club needs to have 4 of its Officers in attendance at both sessions of COT to achieve one of its Distinguished Club Programme (DCP) goals.

I was very fortunate in having a supportive ex-Governor in Sue Voloczi and Division Governor in David Nicholas. The Club and Area Humorous and Table Topics contests seem to be on you almost immediately. It’s important to remember, as it is with most things as an Area Governor, that this is not your personal responsibility. It is important to delegate. You have to be sure that people will actually do what they have volunteered to do (and be prepared to be let down too, have some reserves if possible).

You will also probably be asked to supply Judges and to be a Judge in other Areas. This is of a reciprocal nature so the more you put in the more you get back. It’s also very good experience. You should also be encouraging more experienced club members in your Area to act as Judges.

Once these are over there is the Divisional contest and you may very well have a role to play on the day.

You should also try to get in an Area Executive meeting with the Presidents. VPM, VPE’s and VPPR’s of each of the clubs. It gives them a chance to get together and to share experiences and ideas.

Then it is time for your Club visits. You should already have been in contact with your clubs about their DCP. What are they doing to achieve all 10 goals? Some of the goals are easy, just administrative issues but important nonetheless. They will have been through all this at  COT but you need to ensure this is where they are focussed.

You might choose to deliver the ‘Moments of Truth” Eductional as part of your visit. If you don’t ‘know’ this Educational it is a great one, almost like a health check for clubs and there is a survey form for members to fill in. I collated mine for the club where I delivered it and whilst generally they scored highly there were two areas which were well below the rest. The club knew where to direct their efforts.

The Club visits are important and you should try to get on the Agenda to speak. Club members should know who you are and why you are there. It also allows you to gauge how well the clubs are run and do not be afraid of making adverse comments on your report if you feel they are justified. You should have discussed the issues with the Club President before you do so of course.

Once Christmas is over there is virtually a repeat of the first half of the TMI year. Club Officer Training, Club, Area and Divisional contests (International Speech and Evaluation this time) and another round of Area visits. The second round of Area visits will be much more focussed on the DCP, you are getting towards the pointy end of the TMI year. Are the Clubs going to achieve all their goals? What can you do to help?

Throughout all this you should also be looking at possibilities for forming a new club in your Area. I won’t go into details here that’s a subject for a blog on its own.

If you go through all this and keep your focus you will have had an exhausting but very enjoyable Toastmasters year. I know because I am just about to complete one!  Of course it is also one of your requirements if you are heading for a DTM. It can’t be that bad, I’m about to do it all over again. .