Toastmasters District 91 - Oxfordshire       
   
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Welcome  

Hi, I'm Nikita Parks, Director of Division J or "Joy Division" for 2019-20 in District 91, in Southern England and Wales.

I'm looking forward to serving you through a really dynamic year which is sure to see unprecedented levels of growth as long standing members endeavour to complete their Distinguished Toastmaster awards under the legacy education programme before it ends on 30th June 2020. Members have invested years of effort to get to this point and we're committed to doing our utmost to enable everyone to succeed in reaching their goals. It's going to be hard work, but let's make it fun. Let's cooperate! Let's build new clubs and let's revitalise struggling clubs.

It's also going to be a year in which Pathways takes the strain in the Distinguished Club Programme for the first time, with all members needing to complete the switch to Pathways within the same time frame. We're going to be building on the momentum we gained in 2018-19 to provide opportunity to all who want to, to step beyond their clubs and find what Toastmasters has to offer that fulfils the promise "Where leaders are made". 

I'm delighted to have a really strong team of committed officers with whom to share the joy of success that comes from outstanding teamwork.

  • Assistant Division Director and Division Club Growth Director - Andy Hessey
  • Division Programme Quality Director - Sam Warner
  • Area 4 Director and Cross-Club Mentoring Director - Diane Richardson
  • Area 7 Director and Speechcraft update Project Director - Murielle Sarda-Hutchings
  • Area 10 Director and Spring 2020 Conference Director - Bryan Gunton
  • Area 11 Director and June 2020 Toastmasters Leadership Institute Director - Jackie Preuss
  • Area 21 Director - Tom Hostetler
  • Area 22 Director and Autumn 2019 Conference Director - Carrie Baker 

By replicating our District trio within our Division, with Andy, Sam and myself, we are ensuring laser sharp focus on delivering our District mission within our Division - and we're determined to have fun doing it! This means that our Area Directors can focus more precisely on serving their area clubs and enabling them to be as successful as possible. Let's work towards our District goals of each member getting on average one education award per year, remaining a Toastmaster on average for three years (>70% retention) and all clubs having twenty or more members (100%).

If you're a club officer this year, please take pride in your work, take training really seriously by ensuring you get to our Toastmasters Leadership Institute, Area Club Officer Training or mop-up COT between now and the end of August and again between the start of December and the end of February. Think seriously about how you can achieve most for your club by bringing a wider focus from outside to bear in your club - engage Diane to find yourself one or more mentors from outside your clubs to enable you to grow further and faster. You can sign up to our TLI here: tiny.cc/D91AJTLI

If you're a regular club member, also think outside your club. Participate in contests and other events beyond your club. Participate in the Club Ambassador Programme by visiting other clubs across our District. Don't just turn up unannounced - get yourself a meeting role and make a lasting contribution by bringing and gaining fresh perspectives on how our meetings can be more fun, varied and rewarding. You can signup to our Speaker and General Evaluator exchange here: tiny.cc/D91AJxchg and make sure that your club President and VP Education ase signed up too. We're going to see new clubs appearing across Joy Division this year. Find a prospective club, get involved in arranging demonstration meetings, filling roles until the club has gained enough members to go it alone. You will grow yourself by enabling others to grow and feel good about doing it.

This is just the warm up. We have a month in which to plan, organise and prepare. Whatever you need from us to help you succeed - please just ask your District Officer Team. You can reach us at welcome@joydivision.org.uk. There are no silly questions except unasked ones: we're all growing and learning.

Best wishes for a successful, rearding and enjoyable year ahead.

Nikita

e: nikita@joydivision.org.uk

t: 07770 661 453

   

 “I can’t believe you used to be shy!”

This is what people often tell me nowadays when I share my story and my Toastmasters journey with them.

I first read about Toastmasters in a self-help book over Christmas 2006. Yet, I only joined the organisation in April 2013, when my Toastmasters journey began in Cheltenham Speakers. Why did it take me so long? Simply because there wasn’t a club close to where I lived at the time in Bath.

Looking back on 7 years of Toastmasters membership; I can confidently say that Toastmasters changed my life and made me a better speaker, better leader and a better person.

Become a confident speaker

The Toastmasters educational programme gave me a framework through which I could learn all elements of public speaking. From structuring my talks to body language and vocal variety. The programme covers it all and some more.

A secret sauce also played its magic and that secret sauce is evaluations. This feedback is personal to you and covers both what you do well and points for improvements. Seven years on, I learned to channel my passion into inspirational speeches. While, I still use my hands a bit too much, I’ve learnt how gestures can complement what I say.

If you want to nail these speeches at work, deliver a TEDx talk or even speak for a living. Toastmasters will help you, just like it helped me. Attend every single meeting of your club, do a speech or a role in every meeting and let the magic take place.

Yes, you can lead!

Early on in my Toastmasters journey, I took on the challenge of launching a new Toastmasters club in the heart of London. Why did I do this? Because I wanted to become a better leader and build something for others.

This experience taught me a lot about leadership but so does my current role of District Director. Leading a team of 50+ District leaders that supports our 175+ clubs and 5,000+ members is a fascinating experience. From strategic planning, to vision casting and communicating said vision, Toastmasters covers it all. If you too chose to lead, Toastmasters will help you.

Destination a better you!

Has what I learnt in Toastmasters helped me in other areas of my life? Yes, it has! The confidence I gained through my speeches and leadership roles helps me every day. For a very long time I struggled to form strong relationships with others and what I learnt in Toastmasters made these possible for me.

What will you gain from Toastmasters?

Set yourself some goals, attend every meeting of your club and say “yes” to opportunities. You too might soon find that Toastmasters will change your life.

 

Let’s grow forward together!

Florian Bay, District Director 2019-20

   

 

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