Happy Wednesday, Fellow Toastmasters!
This week’s meeting highlighted Jim Lowery’s remarkable contributions to our club on the one-year anniversary of his mentorship with us.
Members present on Monday night were Harlon, Shankar, Antréa, Craig, Donna, Pamela, Julieanna, and Tammy. Those members not able to make the meeting last night were Laura, Michael, Justine, Mindy, Sean, and Rey.
Harlon asked Jim, on his last night with us as club mentor, to recite the pledge at the beginning of the meeting. Our Toastmaster of the night was Craig Sprout, who shared many interesting tidbits throughout the night concerning Montana, Craig’s home state, and the meeting theme of the evening.
Our WAG, Donna Lowder, maintained “incognito” the Word of the Day, until she revealed it right before the first speech. Our General Evaluator of the night was Julieanna and Pamela performed the role of timer.
The first speech was given by Harlon Pickett, Insurance Broker, as he discussed the vision of the future of the business and the path to realize that vision. He discussed the many changes that have taken place from 2007 to today in the changing landscape of insurance. He has expanded his business to an additional 12 states and would like to be the go-to business for individuals wanting to understand insurance plans. He stressed that healthcare is not the same as health insurance. Harlon’s speech length was 7:02.
Tammy is on the Innovative Planning Pathway and her speech presented the plan for a project she will carry out this fall. “Managing a successful project" is the first speech of 2-3 minutes for Level 4. She discussed the most important parts of the plan she will implement as being: setting the scope, creation of an effective team, setting up a communication plan, planning the organization of the work, identifying the appropriate messaging surrounding the project, and expressing gratitude. This speech lasted 3:24.
For the impromptu speeches, Antréa highlighted our amazing mentor, Jim, and his leadership abilities in each question. Craig talked about the way Jim has been an awesome mentor to our club by saying that he first met Jim while competing and he was always the most gracious contestant. As we all know, he can really tell a story. Craig carries tremendous respect and a place in his heart for Jim and said that we couldn’t have asked for a better mentor for the club.
Shankar talked about how Jim helped us in our team building which is a necessary part of building a community. Jim has led by example. He has provided guidance and information to us, and always shows up to our meetings. He lets us benefit from his amazing experience. He nudged us into a direction but always reminded us that we are our own individual club that needed to find our own groove.
Tammy addressed how Jim made us better communicators and better speakers. His method of always presenting a coherent theme throughout the meeting with topics ranging from space flight to early settlers amazed us all. His in-depth knowledge of such a wide variety of topics and his ability to seamlessly weave the information throughout the meeting maintained a flow from beginning of the meeting to the end. We aspire to communicate on such a high level.
Harlon talked about Jim’s coaching ability. He was an outstanding coach with no problem showing us the way to go. He encouraged us to move forward. He didn’t beat us down, but instead lifted us up. He was able to make the difficult transition from in-person to online with the Wherewithal to keep inspiring us.
Donna talked about how time benefits leadership and discussed Jim’s many years of experience that we were able to take advantage of. He brought us knowledge and experience. He was a great at coaching us and led with humor. Leading is his middle name. He has been a great leader and led us to victory in getting our club up and running. She invited him to come back whenever he wants.
Julie has been with the club but a short time, however, what has impressed her the most about Jim is that he is so interesting. There has never been a dull moment. He’s fun and fascinating and never missed a meeting.
Pamela was the inspiration for our Table Topics format this meeting. She answered that what she wanted to show by this format was to give Jim the feedback and recognition for the good job he has done throughout the year as a club mentor. She appreciated the way he executed the meeting themes and admired his commitment.
Antréa highlighted what she most remembered about Jim. He always showed up regardless of low meeting attendance, or being tired, he always showed up. He exemplifies faithfulness, leadership, commitment, and he is always welcome to come back to join in with us.
Jim spoke last and expressed how much he really liked our club. A club mentorship only has to last for six months but he kept coming to our meetings because he enjoyed watching us grow. He commented on how important is to receive feedback. You do something because you enjoy it and you take it seriously, but he expressed that by receiving feedback throughout the meeting, he was able to see that he did a good job. It felt good to know that and he doesn’t want to stop coming now.
Our impromptu speeches for the night were primarily on target for time with the following:
In the general evaluation portion of the night, Jim evaluated Harlon’s speech saying that he felt it was good that he stood up to deliver it, and that he adjusted his camera angle to give this speech the best angle. He has a clear vision for his company and wants to clear up the insurance confusion. He did challenge Harlon to keep his arms at his side then use them for emphasis as it creates a greater visual impression that way. (3:09)
Shankar said of Tammy’s speech that he was impressed by the setting of the speech with the appropriate background and choice of clothing deliberately not distracting or busy. It was well organized and informed. She outlined and highlighted why the team and messaging is important and pointed out possible pitfalls. Shankar challenged her by saying that she didn’t mention what the project was. She didn’t introduce the team members and why they are good for this specific project. It was concise and delivered lots of information in 2-3 minutes. (2:46)
Donna, in her WAG report, pointed out that per usual, Harlon didn’t disappoint. He really used “really” a lot. Tammy used “so” twice. These are filler words that we should be cognizant of. There was a three-way tie for word of the day between Harlon, Shankar, and Antrea.
Julieanna evaluated the overall meeting. We started on time and the speeches were well given. They were prepared and delivered with enthusiasm even though both went a bit over on time. Everyone performed their duties well. She summed up by restating how much we will miss Jim.
Craig closed out the meeting with his favorite saying, “Toastmasters is a great place to fall on your face.”
The winner for best speech of the night was Tammy and there was a tie for best Table Topics between Jim and Antréa with Tammy coming in 3rd and Craig 4th.
All meeting roles are filled for Monday, August 24th. Let’s fill up the roles for the 31st now and begin working on filling the roster three to four weeks out so that we situate the club members in a better position to prepare ourselves. Sign up for roles at this link: https://ttccctm.org/meetings.
Thanks again for an amazing meeting! Have a great week!
The link to the virtual meeting is here: https://ttccctm.org/welcome/index.
Tri-County Chamber of Commerce Toastmasters club Secretary