Archive for the ‘Member Posts’ Category

President’s Message

September 10, 2008

Written by Hondy Hung

Fellow Toastmasters and most welcomed guests.

Do you know anyone that was born with the ability to ride a bike? 

Me neither. 

Do you know anyone that can ride a bike? 

I know lots too. 

So how does one pick up a skill in which they aren’t born with?  Simple – through observing, learning, and doing.

The above concept is intuitive to most people, and can be extended to public speaking as well.  Often, people are hesitant about speaking in public because they feel that they were not born with the talent. It is
perceived that only extroverts will have the ability to control the stage.  Fortunately, it’s just a misperception.

Just like riding a bike, public speaking can be acquired through observing, learning, and doing.  Toastmasters provide the environment to help make it happen.  Every club meeting, members and guests get to watch prepared speeches, absorb evaluation suggestions, and speak in front of an audience.  We are a supportive club with people helping people, year after year.  I learned a lot from Toastmasters and as
President this year, my pledge is to return it back.  My goal is to help you grow because as Dale Carnegie put it, “Great speakers are not born, they’re trained.”


Become a Mentor or Mentee

September 2, 2008

Written by Alick Siu

In Greek Mythology when Odysseus left for the Trojan war, he asked Mentor to take care of his son Telemachus.  When goddess Athena visited Telemachus, she disguised herself as Mentor and encouraged Telemachus to stand up and go abroad to learn more about his father Odysseus.

In Toastmasters, a mentor is essentially a friendly and experienced member who will pair up with a new or less experienced member to offer advice about the Toastmasters program. A mentor’s duty usually covers the following:

  • Orientate new member mentee regarding Toastmaster meeting activities such as prepared speeches, table topics, evaluation, meeting roles and responsibilities.
  • Brief new member mentee about various Toastmaster program such as Competent Communicator, Competent Leader, Bronze, Silver and Gold program.
  • Ensure that the new member mentee is aware of the process for signing up for meeting roles and speeches and loaning resource from the club library.
  • Help mentee in preparing speech and providing positive feedback.
  • Encourage mentee to take leadership role in the club meeting, club executive, participating in speech contest, regional conference.  This can also be leveraged with the competent leadership program.

For those who are interested in becoming a mentor or a mentee, please contact VP education at

The Benefits of Joining Contests

August 18, 2008

Written by Sara Lam

The world is watching. I will be going up to present my first speech at a contest. But why am I subjecting myself to this? Why would I want the criticism? The public humiliation of falling down flat on my face so that people from not only my club but strangers too will point and laugh at me?

Fellow toastmasters and honored guests. How many of us feel this way? Let me tell you. Everyone! Some for a fleeting second, some for much longer. No matter how comfortable you are a public speaker, there is always a fleeting “oh my goodness, what if I fail?” before we jump into the pool of our

But consider this.

We all have (or hopefully will soon for the new members!) gone up, given our speech and come down with that huge sense of relief and ACCOMPLISHMENT. This feeling is priceless and cannot be bought. It is a fear we’ve taken head on and are all capable of and, I feel, something the audience has gained from listening to, too.

In front of our own members we get comfortable and it is always so much fun to laugh with all of you, but taking on a contest is taking public speaking to the next level. I learn so much from contests. It is true that during meetings we are given feedback, but at contests we gain exposure to different opinions (from different members from outside clubs). In addition to this, we are able to gauge how well we speak compared to other great speakers. Having a benchmark pushes you to look at how you can improve. It is like in a classroom where you strive to be more like the best students.
But instead of just reading the material (when you go watch contests), you are forced to write the test.

Another benefit is the new friends you get to make! Let me tell you, from personal experiences from joining contests people now know me by name. You become memorable.

Joining toastmasters was already a big first step! By joining contests, you challenge yourself to a new level. Take the next step and give yourself that second wind of ‘Wow, I did it and I’m so proud of myself”.