Run On Both Legs

At least one of our board members is a runner and she’s run in several marathons. This takes determination, patience, perseverance, an eye on the goal, and an enjoyment of the journey.

Your Toastmasters experience has many similarities. To get the most out of your membership, you need those same qualities. One of the strengths of Toastmasters is that it’s not like a two-day workshop that quickly crams your head full of theory then sends you out on your own. It’s a journey, and in the company of your fellow members, all of whom want to support and encourage you, as you encourage and help them.

The title of this post refers to the two tracks you travel in the Toastmasters landscape: communication and leadership. When you joined Toastmasters you received two manuals: Competent Communicator and Competent Leadership.

You might consider bringing both manuals to meetings from now on. You already do this when you’re a featured speaker. That way your Evaluator can speak to your goals and enter your evaluation comments. But did you know that you can also be receiving acknowledgement (and credit) for all the meeting roles you take? Look through your Competent Leadership manual. In fact, turn to the last page and see just inside the back cover to see the full list.

By doing this you receive two benefits:

  • Your initiative, taking on meeting roles, is acknowledged. A record is kept and you can check off tasks as you move toward your Competent Leadership award.
  • You have an opportunity to gain insight from your meeting role evaluator as he or she comments on how you handled your meeting role task.

Each track, Communication and Leadership, complements the other. Be in a win-win!