Mike Helm

I joined Toastmasters in 2002. I had previously spoken in public on occasions, but avoided many opportunities when my input would have made a positive contribution. When I did speak up, I’m sure I didn’t do a bad job. But every time I spoke, I had these nagging doubts …was that OK? Did I sound like a dork?

Some of the great gifts Toastmasters has given me are the confidence to get up and speak in any situation, to use content and presentation styles more effectively, and to know that I have given an OK presentation.

I still get a buzz from every Toastmasters meeting because of the skills I continue to develop, mixing with great people, the positive and supportive feeling in our meetings, and the thrill of taking on new team challenges …. and succeeding.

Apart from a huge development of my speaking skills, I have better life skills which I have learned at Toastmasters meetings, such as learning to listen, doing things on time, giving feedback to people in a positive way, and managing meetings in a professional way.

I could never have foreseen the opportunities to develop and use my leadership skills … as a club Vice President and President, an Area Governor responsible for the development of four clubs, an award winning Division Governor responsible for half the clubs in WA, and this year’s District Governor responsible for about 140 clubs in four States. The latter position landed me a trip this year to the US for training and the international Toastmasters convention … and the chance to work with Toastmasters international leadership.

In a word what can I say about Toastmasters? Just … WOW!!!