We have probably heard the phrase “Your Learning is your Earning”. That is true because the word Learning consists of L and Earning.
So when we invest our time in learning, we get better returns on our earnings
Here I would like to share some learnings in the course of my journey with Toastmasters.
In August 2018, I joined the Toastmasters Club to accelerate the development of my communication & leadership skills. I believe that it was one of the best investments I made for my learning so far.
In brief, Pathways is the foundation of learning in Toastmasters which helps us to improve our communication skills. 11 specific learning paths build 3000 unique competencies and the best part is that all the paths are available online. So we can easily learn anytime, anywhere.
To start your Toastmasters’ journey, the first step is to choose a path based on which life competency you want to develop. I had chosen Innovative Planning.
Apart from the communication projects, there are several leadership roles we need to perform in every Toastmasters club meeting. My journey started in the very first meeting with the leadership role of Grammarian & Ah-counter. This made me confident to deliver my first prepared project speech, the Ice-Breaker Speech, which is nothing but an introductory speech about oneself.
As I progressed with the available resources, I developed my skills and boosted my creativity to write one speech in a month which resulted in 10 project speeches in the year eventually, I got recognized with the Triple Crown, an Award in Toastmasters to members who achieve three or more educational awards within a Toastmasters year.
My First Elective Project – understanding your leadership style provided me with the much-needed details about different types of leadership. My Second Elective Project – which focuses on the positive, changed my perception of life as it was about focusing your energy on a positive outcome at all times.
Another platform for learning in Toastmasters is the DTAC – District Toastmasters Annual Conference.
DTAC was a three-day event filled with energy, speeches, activities, and a lot of other learnings & networking.
After the event, one of my friends asked me about my experience at DTAC, I replied that it was something one can’t describe in words.
To me, DTAC is a must-attend event for all Toastmasters and non-toastmasters alike. A truly amazing experience to learn and grow.
Other than project speeches in Pathways, leadership roles, speech contests, Debate contests, trainings & DTAC, there are many more events where I had interacted with the best of the best leaders & communicators like Past International Toastmasters President DTM Lark Doley, Past District 105 Director DTM Balaji, TM Kent John Sabejon (The winner of International Speech category in District 105), Mr.Mikolaj Zielinski (one of the 100 global candidates hoping to embark on first manned mission to Mars) & Past International Toastmaster President DTM Col Mohammed Murad.
These interactions were a realization of the saying a meeting with a wise man is worth more than reading a book.
Toastmasters is a self-paced program or as our club President calls it, a self-service canteen. It completely depends on you, the member, how much you want to take, and what you want to take. There are plenty of resources & platforms available to accelerate your learning.
I have made many new friends in Toastmasters and connected to the best group of leaders from around the world, which is very important as the right company is crucial for growth.
I developed reading as a habit and read all TMI magazines which worked like a vitamin dose for motivation regularly.
I believe we never stop learning, so let us continue the journey of learning after your academics through Toastmasters International for personal & professional development.
Leadership & Learning are indispensable to each other – John F Kennedy
I joined Toastmasters to improve my Public Speaking & Leadership skills but what I received exceeded my expectations.
In the New Year 2024, if you have a resolution to develop your leadership & public speaking skills, be our guest at the Vadodara Toastmasters Club every Sunday at the Baroda Management Association Anmol Plaza from 10:30 onwards.
Wishing you all a Happy Learning and earning year ahead.
Hari Pratap Singh
Vadodara Toastmasters club