According to Google, Toastmasters International is a worldwide nonprofit educational organization that empowers individuals to become more effective communicators and leaders and the organization's membership exceeds 345,000 in more than 15,900 clubs in 142 countries.
Wilderness Toastmasters is part of these staggering statistics in our community right here in your many hometowns. On October 22, 1924, Toastmasters launched their organization and has had many phases of membership from all male or female clubs to co-ed clubs and corporate clubs. As companies promote leadership within the confines of their business, they have also incorporated Toastmasters into their business model.
The benefits of Toastmasters include clearer communication, improved leadership skills, enhanced teamwork, effective meetings, increase productivity, positive mentoring, complements existing training programs, and it is very cost effective. A typical club meeting consists of three parts, a speeches, evaluations and table topics. One of the biggest accomplishments of a Toastmaster is giving their first introductory speech that is four to six minutes of words that are shared with friends. Many fear giving their first speech because they fear public speaking, but the crazy thing is, you are sharing information about you almost every day of your life. When you meet a person, you share a story about you or they will share a story about themselves. One of the most favorite conversations between two people are personal stories. An introductory speech with Toastmasters has the same concept, because you are sharing an experience, a story, an intro to who you are.
The next time you think you are afraid of public speaking, think about having a conversation with a new friend and swapping sentences. As you get to know each other, the sentences become easier and the more you share, the more you find you have a common ground, which can turn into a lifelong friendship. Without conversation, you would have a silent life, so I encourage you to find a Toastmasters Club in your area and introduce yourself, you may be surprised at the next friend you attract into your personal circle.