Monthly Archives: May 2015

Meeting 173 – Club Officers Elections

Yesterday we had our Club Officer Elections and we must say that our president managed to make us nostalgic about the Toastmaster year 2014/2015 which went surprisingly fast!

It was the meeting of retrospections with emphasis on the activities done by Club Officers however we didn’t give up on our core meeting roles: speakers and evaluators. For the curious ones, here is what actually happened during the meeting:

We had two prepared speeches: Simeon with Project 2 from Competent Communication manual talking about his current passion – teaching to share the knowledge accumulated as professional. A subject close to his heart he said as he is providing courses to his IBM colleagues regularly (up to 25% of his time!). Then we had Anna with Advanced Manual – Speaking to inform project and she told us the secrets of what to do and how to do when your luggage gets lost while travelling by plane. Things to keep in mind: don’t panic, don’t leave the airport without a reference number once you reported the luggage loss, get a phone number where to ask for information about its status and ask about the compensation package!

The prepared speeches were evaluated by Josef and Martin and they both gave pertinent suggestions and praised the good preparation of the speakers!

The second part of the meeting was dedicated to Elections: Mary, the Toastmaster of the meeting had a presentation about each and every officer role for everyone to know what these roles imply and require. Then Simeon held an absolutely amazing press conference with our current president Jerome. There were so many questions asked and we found important information about the club activity during this year! The officers team was successful as we had monthly meetings without exception, everyone was involved in raising the meetings content quality and we supported each other as friends and colleagues!

Obviously the last part was the highest-pressure one. For each officer role the candidates had to come on stage and tell in 1-2 sentences why they want to become club officers, what is their motivation for it. We are pleased to announce that all the officers have been elected by 100% votes ‘FOR’ from the present active members.

Here are our new officers:

President:  Ioana Florentina Pop

Vice President Education: Pavlina Marsalova & Simeon Iskidzhiski

Vice President Membership: Jana Weinlichova & Jan Grund

Vice President Public Relations: Josef Hertl

Treasurer and Secretary: Martin Plsek

Sergeant at Arms: Eva Vodickova

Big congratulations to our new crew that will start its activity on 1st of July and good luck in the new roles!

Ioana Pop, VP PR


Meeting 170 – Rituals

Do you wonder how the last meeting was? If you missed it here is a short overview:

Meeting theme was Rituals and we found out that everyone has rituals from ‘a very good cup of coffee every morning’ to starting their daily work in a specific manner. Toastmasters too have rituals and if we think about it the entire meeting is a list of rituals very well linked together.

We had one prepared speech presented by Jan RejchrtProject 3 from Competent Communication Manual called Beekeeping and money. Jan proved that he knows a lot about apiculture: his father is a beekeeper and his university degree was about beekeeping and the benefits it brings. According to his research the benefit that the beekeeper obtains is only a small part of the huge impact that bees have on the agriculture. The bees are the only ones that pollinate flowers, vegetables and trees so we should be really mindful and use more honey to support the natural process and the earth.

And as Jan says ’Many people like honey but everyone likes … money! ‘ so we might consider beekeeping as a really profitable business!

Those who missed the District Conference in Bratislava last month had the chance to see a great workshop held by Michal Holub on Toastmasters lessons from real life. His life completely changed after joining Toastmasters and started to apply the lessons learned in the real life such as leadership skills, presentation skills, and the idea of having a manual to follow for sales, prepared and impromptu speeches. He moved from a developer up to International Sales Director and he strongly believes that there are many similarities between the real life situations and the toastmasters meetings whereas you need leaders in both; you need to be a very good communicator. The difference is clearly a skill builder: if in real life everything is serious and your job might depend on it, in Toastmasters you have the freedom to play, to forget about limits and not be afraid of others opinion or the feedback you might receive. A very inspiring workshop!

Elections are coming (in 3 weeks) and to make sure that everyone knows well what are the roles and responsibilities of Club Officers we had a presentation about them instead of the Table Topics Session. To sum up each role, the current officers told us the following:

President – Jerome: The President is the one who directs the club in meeting the members’ needs for educational growth and leadership, establishes long-term and short-term goals for the club and he is Club’s representative on Area and District Councils.

Vice President Education – Marie: plans, organizes, and implements the meetings to fit the chosen speeches, educational modules, and related events to the members’ needs. When members complete a speech or a major achievement, it is the VPE who initials the manuals or contacts Toastmasters to ensure proper recognition.

Vice President Membership – Zuzana and Tomas: plans, organizes, and implements a continuous marketing effort to ensure that club membership remains above charter strength (20 members). This is done both by retaining current member, with the VPE, and by gathering new members, with the VPPR.

Vice President Public Relations – Ioana: plans, organizes, and implements programs to maintain the positive image of the club and Toastmasters for all guests, members, and the general public. Main activities include publicity campaigns, website maintenance, social media representation (Twiter, Linkedin, Facebook) and club newsletters.

Treasurer and Secretary – Martin: cares for the club’s records, including by-laws and constitution, new member applications, supply orders, officers’ lists, and past club records fall to the Secretary for execution. The Secretary also records and reads the meeting minutes, for meetings of the club and of the Executive team. As treasurer he is responsible for Club financial policies, procedures and controls. The role involves the club’s finances, including dues collection and materials purchasing.

Sergeant at Arms – Eva: arranges setup for all meetings, sets out and cares for the club’s materials and supplies, Club property, including banner, nametags, and supplies, and greets members and especially guests

Next meeting we will be talking about Gadgets, don’t miss meeting 171!

Ioana Pop, VP PR