Wednesday, February 27, 2013
Every visitor is a potential member - 26 February
As usual, our President asked each visitor to give a short introduction. Their responses were all similar: “I want to improve my public speaking skills” or “I want to overcome my fear of speaking in public.” What became overwhelmingly evident to me was what we at Toastmasters have known for so long:
1. Many people really fear speaking in front of others;
2. Being able to speak confidently to groups of people is the key to personal confidence and to career success.
That got me thinking about how clubs succeed. I believe in serendipity or synchronicity and last night’s meeting was yet another example of such a chance encounter. Antoinette Baatjes gave a delightful educational speech on How to Motivate People, which started with words attributed to Dr Phil (but which I have subsequently discovered to have been used by a host of other people): “You can’t give what you don’t have”.
Motivation, according to Antoinette, can take three forms:
Public recognition - as above, people enjoy this recognition at a meeting (in the form of an award like the Top Toastie, or Best Table Topic) or in a newsletter or club blog.
Promotion – this entails opportunities for advancement in the organisation. Members may be asked to serve the club in executive positions, in this way recognising their value to the club.
Fourteen people came to visit last night; fourteen people took a risk. Were we at Algoa motivating enough in our encouragement of them and of one another that they will stay to become members?
Until next time