Every Toastmaster Club has its own culture. While most every Toastmaster meeting is essentially the same, they all are just a little bit different. The goal of this page is to describe some of the meeting roles of Mission Chapter Toastmasters. (this page is a work in progress)
AwardMaster: The purpose of the role is to practice giving an award. The person who the award is given to also practices receiving an award. Votes for Best or most improved speaker, Best of most improved Tabletopics and Best or most improved evaluator are passed to the AwardMaster. All members and guests can vote. The AwardMaster does not vote unless it is to silently break a tie. Normally if the AwardMaster also should find himself winning an award, it is okay to give the award to the next highest vote getter. The primary purpose of the role is the practice of giving (and for the winners, receiving awards). Share the wealth. In the event one person wins two awards in the same meeting, it is okay to give the person just one award and give the second award to the person with the next highest number of awards in the other category. Other clubs can call this role vote counter and balloteer. At Mission the award winner gets a ribbon to keep and a trophy to hold during their micro acceptance speech.
Opener and Closer: The purpose of the roles is to “open” and “close” the meeting. Opening words and closing words can be as simple as a quote, short poem, some words of wisdom, a thought. Usually related to the theme of the meeting. Time is one to two minutes.
Speaking tip: The purpose of this role is to offer a 60-120 second tip to the club members on communication. Maybe it is a tip you read about in the Toastmaster magazine. It could be as simple as talking about “the rule of three” or to remind speakers to remember not to race through their speech as well as the importance of the pause. It should be short and sweet.
Tabletopics: When you are the Tabletopics Master your job is to encourage impromptu speaking. You can use questions, objects, statements or other creative devices that you address to individual members. You choose who to ask based on their roles at the meeting. Members with no roles go first. Members with smaller roles next (Timer, Jokemaster…). Guests can be asked, but it is optional for them to answer. They can if they like talk about themselves an an option. The next to the last to ask are evaluators followed by the speakers. You might find it easier to make a list of people to ask before going up front. Watch the clock, usually you only have about 15 minutes, so you need to keep things moving. And don’t forget to call for the vote for best or most improved participant. Have with with it.
When called to answer, stand up to answer. Don’t hesitate, jump right in with a reply (between 1-2 minutes). You can hijack a question someone else was asked too. There is no rule that you have to tell the truth or even hear the question accurately. This is impromptu speaking exercise. Have fun with it.
Rooney: This is a role unique to Mission Chapter Toastmasters as far as we know. It is inspired by Andy Rooney of 60 minutes fame. It’s a 1 to 2 minute place to complain about something. Always light in nature like “why do fruit and veggies have labels put on with super glue and why it drives me nuts?” to “why do commercials get louder than programing on TV and why it bugs me?”