Don’t tell me how I’m not getting the whole thing

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I was sitting in a session recently where the duration was scheduled to be 4 hours, and the introducer let us know this was normally a 6-8 hour program they run. By itself, I thought this was okay. Telling me you normally run a longer program but cut it down to 4 hours for this […]

Job Hunting – Using Toastmasters to Prepare for the Interview, Part II

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For In Part 1 of this series, I discussed valuable lessons that came from using prepared speeches to better develop my skills for the job interview process. In other words, determine my content and practice that content in the club. In this segment, we’ll discuss using Speech 2, Get to the Point to further practice […]

Focus on yourself for a better career

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At the Toastmasters D44 fall conference, my friend Kene Iloenyosi gave a wonderful keynote on change. While he wasn’t focused explicitly on career change, one of the most impactful parts of this presentation was Kene’s second point about the need to focus on yourself. this made me think about my recent career changes and how his points […]

D44: Johnny Campbell – Win the Crowd

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Accredited speaker Johnny Campbell spoke at the District 44 conference on Insider Secrets for Creating Winning Presentations, titled “Win the Crowd”. What I like about hearing Johnny is his amazing ability to tell stories that leave you with an easy-to-remember point. I knew what to expect from seeing him speak at the Toastmasters International Conventions […]

Learn to ignore feedback

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I was watching Alan Weiss recently on Periscope, and he was discussing self worth. One of his pieces of advice was to “learn to ignore unsolicited feedback”. In a shocking twist, this made me think of Toastmasters. As a speaker in Toastmasters, I get a lot of feedback. Every speech I give, which is on average 2-4 […]

Opening – scene of the crime

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As I was working on my speech for the Toastmasters International Speech Contest, I was listening to a storytelling lesson by Darren LaCroix, and he reminded me of a lesson that another World Champion, Ed Tate, teaches: Start your speech at the scene of the crime. He calls this the CSI opening – just like the […]

Toastmasters vs. Business

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Today I attended a half day session with FranklinCovey in Kansas City. One segment of the training was titled Presentation Advantage and obviously is a topic I am familiar with. I was curious what take FranklinCovey had on this topic, and how it would differ from Toastmasters. Purpose: This program defined a presentation as “The sharing […]

Clear and Simple

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Darren’s #10 Speaking Mistake was, Not Getting Clear on the Message. (more on his top 10 list here). I was asked recently, “What if I don’t have a point for my speech?” My reply…”Why are you speaking?” In Darren’s session, he made two points about this mistake that I felt were very important: 1. What […]

Contest prep – story selection

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As I look forward to the 2016 Toastmasters International speech contest, I’ve given a bit of thought to what makes the best story for that event. In 2014, I told the story of my first assignment in the Air Force, and how I took an unexpected (to me) situation and, essentially, grew up. Titled, Not […]

Toastmasters: 2015 Contest season wrap-up

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This year, I had a chance to put my money where my mouth is in the International Speech Contest. As the Division S representative, I competed in our District Contest against some fierce competition, and I lost. Big time. In fact, if you saw the report that went to TI, you’d see I finished 6th…out […]