Best Practices

“Never Overlook the Power of Simplicity”–Robin Sharma

 Clubs in District 105 are known for their innovative ideas of maintaining a positive engagement among members. Over the years, successful clubs have initiated, implemented, practiced and habituated many ideas to ensure a sustainable growth status.

It is only a myth that tremendous effort is required to raise the quality bar of a club. Simple ideas implemented in the right perspective, can do wonders, resulting in an enjoyable experience for club officers and members. As we aim for a better member experience, the best practices, followed by successful clubs across the District, are being compiled and shared.

Leaders are encouraged to contribute the best practices followed at their clubs, for sharing across the District through this platform.

Implement these low-effort, big-impact practices, let the magic begin!

2) Celebrate Members’ Education Award Achievement

“The More You Praise and Celebrate Your Life, the More There is in Life to Celebrate”–Oprah Winfrey

Each education award in the club is a matter of celebration. Let us ensure, we don’t miss any opportunity to celebrate! Here is a best practice that club can adopt.

3) Educate and Empower through ‘The Successful Club Series’

“Education is the Most Powerful Weapon which you can Use to Change the World” – Nelson Mandela

Many members do not get an opportunity, to fully explore the various useful resources available in Toastmasters Education module. If the club members are made aware of these modules, the club quality will rise exponentially.

Current and past club officers are encouraged to present modules from the Successful Club Series, at club meetings on a regular basis, for self growth and club growth.

SUCCESSFUL CLUB SERIES:-
The 11 modules in this series address the quality of club meetings and offer tips on attracting and maintaining members. Presenting these modules takes a member closer to ACS and ALB award requirements. A complete set of “The Successful Club Series” modules, including outlines and PowerPoint presentations, is available for a member to download for free from toastmasters website, through the below link:- http://www.toastmasters.org/~/media/C905B4AD17744CAEB2BD575203E0795E.ashx?la=en

4) Be Proactive, Be in Good Standing

“Doing the Best at This Moment Puts you in the Best Place for the Next Moment” – Oprah Winfrey

For some of the newly elected club treasurers, collection of membership renewal dues from members is often a tough task, leading to a stressful situation as the deadline approaches. In order to avoid missing the deadline or the corresponding DCP goal, successful clubs start the dues collection process much earlier – from July or January itself, for the October / April dues renewal.

Please note the following points:-
► Membership dues for 6 months is $45
► There will not be any grace period for membership
► Clubs / Members who fail to pay dues renewal before the deadline of 1st October / 1st April will not be in Good Standing
► Clubs to submit dues renewal for minimum 8 members before the deadline, to secure the corresponding DCP goal and to ensure to be in Good Standing.
► Club Treasurer or any club officer can start membership renewal dues payment online from last week of August.
Be proactive, Start early, Avoid last moment worries.

5) Less Pain, More Gain! – Including SMEDLEY Award!

“Continuous Effort – Not Strength or Intelligence – is the Key to Unlocking Our Potential” – Winston Churchill

Now that the first membership building contest of the year has just begun, clubs can make plans to bring inactive members back to the club and achieve the SMEDLEY Award. The action can result in increased membership retention also.

Follow the steps below:-
- Club officers collectively prepare the contact list of past / inactive members
- VP Membership contacts maximum number of inactive members and invites them to the club meeting
- VP Education plans special theme meeting, to mesmerize the inactive members with the changed positive atmosphere in the club.
- Collect only token amount from the past members – just enough to reinstate them till next dues renewal period

6) Spread Awareness on Speech Contest Judging Criteria

“Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you” – Holy Bible

Let us get prepared for the contest season, from now itself!

Here is a best practice, we can start implementing at club level, to ensure more satisfying and enjoyable experience during Club / Area / Division and District level speech contests, for contestants, judges and even the audience!

Follow the steps below:-
- SAA downloads and keeps sufficient copies of Judges Ballot Sheets (International Speech, Evaluation speech and Table Topics Speech) with the club material
- Instead of Ballots and Brief Evaluation Sheets (TI shop item 163), during club meetings, distribute Judges Ballot sheets used for speech contests.
- During club regular meetings, Club members use Judges ballot sheets for selecting Best Speaker, Best Evaluator and Best TT Speaker

Let us aim for better member experience and quality judging during the contests.

7) Help Members to Visualize their Progress

“All you need is the plan, the Road map, and the Courage to press on to your destination” – Earl Nightingale

Position of VP Education in a Toastmasters Club is the most rewarding one in overall leadership development. Make it more meaningful and enjoyable with the right tool in hand.

Here is a best practice that all VP-Educations can implement in their club, to plan club meetings and track club members’ education progress. The worksheet can also be used to motivate the club members through a point system and to award the best contributing member! Download the spreadsheet at: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B42Wp9UJzXSYS3ZSRVZBcTg0OGM/view?usp=sharing

The spreadsheet can also be custom made as an “all in one club tool” that can be used by struggling clubs where couple of officers end up shouldering the entire club’s responsibilities.

Enjoy the journey as a VP-Education, creating an enriched member experience!

8) Back up Club Membership Roster on Regular Basis

“With insufficient data, it is easy to go wrong"– Carl Sagan

As club officers, have you ever experienced difficulties in re-instating a member?

By keeping back up of club membership roster twice a year (in October and April), the clubs can have the membership details of all its past members handy. As the roster of October and April will include PAID and UNPAID members during the previous SIX months dues payment period, clubs will be able to maintain details of all its past members.
All clubs are encouraged to keep back up of membership roster, for easy reference and use to re-instate past members.

9) Let the World Know – through a club newsletter

“You can’t judge a book by its cover, but you can sell a bunch of books if you have a good one” – Jayce O’Neal

As club officers, have you ever experienced difficulties in re-instating a member?

As the first quarter of the Toastmasters year comes to an end, many clubs have performed remarkably well through focused efforts of club officers and members. Capture all the inspiring news in a Club Newsletter and get it published– let the world know of your club’s success.

Benefits of publishing a creative newsletter for the club are many –
Motivates members
Engages members in creative works
Promotes member’s achievements
Promotes the club’s success stories
Can be used as an effective marketing tool
Working together to publish a club newsletter is an amazing experience that can’t be missed. Unleash the fun and creativity that a small team can bring!
TEAMWORK CAN MAKE THE DREAM WORK!

10) Speechcraft – Tool for Revamping Weak Clubs

“Without leaps of imagination, or dreaming, we lose the excitement of possibilities. Dreaming, after all, is a form of planning” – Gloria Steinem

Do you know a club that is struggling for quality or membership? Use Toastmasters Speechcraft program to –
► Re-energize the club quality
► Re-emphasize the basics of Toastmasters Education Program
► Ensure membership retention and membership building

Speechcraft is the quickest means by which non-Toastmasters can jump right into the process of improving their speaking skills. It is also an effective means of building club membership. Clubs can benefit in many ways by hosting a Speechcraft session:-
► Build club membership
► Give new members a helping hand with the different meeting roles
► Reach out to the community
► Give experienced members an opportunity to grow
► Share the Toastmasters experience with others
► Speechcraft attendees who decide to join the club would have already completed 3-4 speeches towards their CC, by the end of the program
► Speechcraft attendees can invite their family and friends to the graduation ceremony, which takes place at club meeting location – which introduces them to Toastmasters and possibly inspire them to join.

With the help of few committed members, clubs can easily accommodate the program into their regular meetings and find new energy, with lot of additional benefits:
► Participants become familiar with the time and meeting place of the club. They know by the end of the program that they can work it in their schedules.
► Get to know the current members of the club. If they join, they know they are joining friends.
► No additional expenses, as the program is conducted during the regular club meetings
► The fee they pay for the course can be applied towards their club membership, should they decide to join the club sponsoring the Speechcraft.

Find new energy in your club, through effective use of modules from Toastmasters Education program!

11) Make the Best out of Club Speech Contest

“Your big opportunity may be right where you are now” – Napoleon Hill

Club Contests can be turned into an event that can find solution to any struggle the club might be facing. A little planning and a right approach can bring in the desired results.
Opportunities are many:-
- Resolve club membership issues
- Win Talk up Toastmasters Award
- Bring inactive members back to the club
- Opportunity for all club members to set higher goals
- Members progress on their education award goals
Whatever the struggle, Club Contest can be a solution!

“Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work” – Thomas A. Edison

12) Keep Club Meeting Information Online Up to date

“You have to find a way to make people know you’re there” – Nikki Giovanni

When people know how to reach your club, you will see more guests at your meetings. Update club meeting / contact details online so that aspirant toastmasters can reach your club easily.
► Verify your current club information under “find a club” in toastmasters website
► Confirm the information is latest and accurate
► In case of any update, club officers can easily modify the information through Club Central.
Make the club more visible!