Toastmasters Clubs are a wonderfully organized platform for developing your public speaking and leadership skills. They have well-defined programs on both these tracks. For public speaking, it starts with the competent communicator (CC) track – a manual with ten projects, each with set objectives, guidelines to achieve those objectives and an evaluation template. This is followed by the ‘ACB’ or the advanced communicator bronze level. Here you can choose two manuals out of a set of many, which you can find here. These two manuals have five projects each, similar to the CC manual, but focusing on a particular trait desirable in public speaking such as entertaining your audience or persuading them. Two more manuals after these, successfully completed, along with a few other requirements puts you in the ‘ACS’ or the advanced communicator silver level and the cycle can continue till you complete all the desirable manuals ultimately getting an ‘ACG’ or the advanced communicator gold level.
I choose ‘The entertaining speaker’ and ‘The specialty speeches’ for my ACB track. The projects in these manuals include:
The entertaining speaker
- Preparing and delivering an entertaining speech
- Finding good stories and anecdotes to include in speeches
- Using humor
- Incorporating drama into presentations
- Presenting an after-dinner speech
The specialty speeches
- Impromptu talks
- Inspirational speeches
- Selling a product
- Reading out loud
- Introducing a speaker
I shall be publishing the speeches I delivered as part of my projects in these manuals for my ACB track in hope of providing some guidance on how to script your speeches and mostly, to give you, hopefully, a laugh, smile or a tear in the eye! You can read the first post of this track here.