Your Toastmasters Journey
Ideas and suggestions to help you on your voyage.
As a member of Toastmasters, there is a world of opportunities before you, ready to help you explore and expand your horizons.
Whether you’re just beginning your Toastmasters career or you’re a seasoned veteran, here are a few thoughts to keep in mind as you consider your next steps on your journey.
Set Your Goals
Knowing where you want to go is usually an important first step to help you figure out how to get there. Take a moment to reflect on what you’d like to get out of Toastmasters. Here are a few questions to consider:
- Do you want to develop communication skills?
- Do you want to develop leadership skills?
- Do you have a fear of public speaking?
- Are you looking to grow your network?
Attend Club Meetings
No matter what your objectives may be, attending meetings can help you reach your goals. A club meeting provides a friendly, supportive environment for members to learn, practice, and polish their communication and leadership skills.
If you’re new to Toastmasters and want to “test the waters” before jumping in, that’s OK. You’re free to proceed at whatever pace is comfortable for you. However, we strongly suggest you attend your club’s meetings. Even just watching and observing can provide a wealth of information — and becoming more familiar with your club and its member will help you become more comfortable.
Participate in Meetings
Even if you’re not ready to give a speech yet, volunteer for a role in a meeting — any role.
Club meetings provide an opportunity to participate in a variety of ways:
- Prepared speeches, impromptu speeches, and evaluations
- Supporting meeting roles
- Communication and leadership workshops
- Speech contests
- Networking opportunities
Actively participating in any of the roles listed above will help you gain confidence as a speaker and a leader — and you’ll have fun at the same time.
Visit Another Club
Accelerate your learning and broaden your experience by visiting other clubs on the area. Visiting a club other than your “home” club will expose you to new ideas and help you explore different ways of filling meeting roles. And it will add a little variety to your overall Toastmasters experience.
Visit the Find and Visit a Club page for a list of clubs to explore.
If you’re ready to take an even bigger step outside of your comfort zone, consider becoming a Club Ambassador. Visiting other clubs as an ambassador is a great opportunity to grow your network, practice in front of a different audience, and learn new skills. Check out the Club Ambassador Program page for more details.
Attend a District Event
District 101 offers many great events during the year. Here are a few to consider attending:
Contests are held every year at the club, area, division, and district level. These may include Humorous Speech Contests, Evaluation Contests, Table Topics Contests, & International Speech Contests. Even if you’re not competing, watching others compete is a great way to pick up some ideas and tips for being a better speaker. Find out more on the contest page.
- Special Workshops:
Throughout the year, District 101 hosts workshops on various topics that benefit our members. Learn more about upcoming workshops on the GREAT Events page.
- District Conferences:
Our district hosts an annual conference every year in May. The conferences features several events, including the district-level contest championships, educational sessions, and networking opportunities. Find out more on the conference page.
- Club Officer Training (COT):
Our district hosts a number of club officer training sessions every year in the summer and in the winter. Club officers are strongly recommended to attend, but you don’t have to be a club officer if you’d like to attend and learn more about various officer roles. Find out about upcoming training sessions on the training page.
- Toastmasters Leadership Institute (TLI):
This is the premier educational opportunity for both club officers and any Toastmasters member to come together to network, share ideas, and be inspired. It’s where club officers receive training on how to best serve their clubs, and all Toastmasters can expand their skills as communicators and leaders with additional educational sessions. TLI’s take place in July and January. Find out about upcoming TLI’s on the training page.
Become an Officer
While attending meetings and serving in the various meeting roles helps build the essential skills to be successful, serving as a club officer will help further enhance your leadership skills. There are several officer positions that let you help your club, each of which will help you develop new leadership and communication skills. Learn more about becoming an officer here.