Toastmasters 2011 Convention – Accredited Speaker Auditions

These are notes I took during the Accredited Speaker Auditions at the 2011  TI Convention. I missed the second speaker, but have good notes from the first and third.

Conner Cuneen, DTM -Pillars of Marketing Wisdom

Conner looked a little stiff starting out – and gave us 100,000 welcomes (an Irish thing)

All people dream, but not equally – Laurence of Arabia

Clear and compelling vision
– Successful businesses have a clear vision on what success will look like
– Howard Shaw – Starbucks – his vision while visiting Chicago – “in 5 years time, everyone on this street with a Starbucks cup in their hand”
– Starbucks now has over 17,000 units globally

Do you have a clear and compelling vision?
Do your people know the vision?

– in 2003, McDonalds recorded their first ever quarterlyy loss
– the CEO said “wouldn’t it be something if we had clean restrooms and hot, fresh food in all of our restaurants?”
The share price then? $12.50 Now? $87

– one suggested vision – get your staff to start thinking, “I want this customer to say as they are leaving ‘hey, I liked that place, I want to come back.'”

…you must see and feel what you are thinking

genchi genbutsu – go to the source and learn
If you understand your marketplace and your customers – you have a better chance of succeeding in that market

When Toyota decided to launch the Lexus brand – they sent their design engineers to live in Laguna Beech California to observe and understand their target audience.

Toyota wanted to create a child of America

You don’t need a Toyota budget, you just need a searching, inquisitive mind.

– do an online survey
– just call your customers and ask

Brand experience
– your behavior drives what people say about you
– what people say about you is your brand

asked “how many Guinness drinkers in the room”

the perfect pint takes 119 seconds to pour

Don’t just sell a product, sell the experience – Harley Davidson, Starbucks, Apple.

Interesting miss – he discussed the difference between an iPod and a Zune and said “if I offered every one here an iPod or a Zune, I bet 98 percent of you would take the iPod.” Why not make it more powerful and let us see us answering that with 98% or more?

list three words you would like someone to say about you, after you have left the room:

_________      _________      _________

Conclusion was a good wrap-up of the three points. He asked us some points, but again missed an opportunity. He asked us what coffee company he mentioned. we all said Starbucks. Then he asked us how likely it was that we would see one in the next 24 hours. hmmm. he didn’t prompt that earlier, and most of his audience will be in this hotel for the next 24 hours. Although, it turned out well with the same questions about McDonalds and Lexus.

To be honest, this presentation feels very similar to his presentation last year. My three words about Conner – “very good speaker”

editors note: I missed the second speaker

Tammy Miller, DTM, PID – Colors of Life
– imagine a blank canvas – 8 feet high by 8 feet wide – completely white – blank – it represents all of our lives
– is your life like than canvas, like a mural, or like a coloring book?
– what’s in a coloring book? no color, just black lines
– started with blank paper, then coloring books – color inside the lines
– in business, we’re told to think outside the box…color outside the lines
– colors everywhere – even in this hotel
– look at the carpet, she mentioned it’s really quite ugly – so you look up in the casino, not at the carpet
– people bring colors into our lives
– places bring colors into our lives
– hospital operating rooms are green because that is relaxing
– she asked the audience of 200-300 people how many people work out in a gym every day? less than 5 people raised their hands. She said that Gym’s are sometimes painted blue (inside) because research has shown that blue has the effect of making us work out longer and harder
Crayon box
– Red is the color of energy and confidence
– Green is the color of nature
– Yellow is the color of happiness, joy and laughter – Legal pads are yellow because yellow is the color of creativity
– Blue is the color of peace, spirituality and wisdom
(green had as much time devoted to it as the other three together)

When she learned she had cancer
– gather a group of friends to be her humor team
“We cannot always change what happens to us, but we can change how we respond”
– her color changed from gray to pink…hot pink
– we never know what we are being prepared for

The colors of our lives are created by the choices that we make
wrapped up by tying in her opening about the canvas, mural and the coloring book

Last year I was able to accurately predict who would receive the Accredited Speaker designation. This year, I was less accurate. I thought Tammy Miller was the one I’d pay to see, but I might be biased in that I’ve met her and heard her speak at past conventions. As it turns out Conner was the only recepient of the designation this year.

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