Bamberg Toastmasters

Public speaking – experiment, improve and succeed

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Official Charter Party

We finally got around to celebrating the official Charter of Bamberg Toastmasters. The snow made for a magnificent backdrop at Schloss Seehof. First we got a guided tour by our member Erik and then continued with the celebrations at the Gasthof “Drei Kronen”. We had a lovely meal and locally brewed beers.

Impressions of our day out:

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The programme and illustrious guests
Toastmasters wouldn’t be Toastmasers without public speaking. So we had some impromptu speeches, a speech in praise of the founding committee, a toast and even a song.
We had friends from all the 4 clubs in Nuremberg and from Erlangen Toastmaster, but our Division Director Stefan had the longest journey and came to party with us especially from Munich!
Important decisions were made during the course of the evening. Or had I better I say, as the evening progressed: We decided on introducing a new role to our meeting agenda: cakemaster.
If you would like to find out for yourself what this means, come as a guest to our next meeting on December 11th.

The Ice Breaker – A Special Toastmasters Speech

If you could tell us who you are with 3 pictures, which ones would you choose?

That was Vera’s brilliant idea for her Ice Breaker speech at our last meeting. The Ice Breaker is the first speech of all Toastmasters members. It is a challenge for many new speakers, and a real treat for the other club members.  The idea is that the speaker talks about a very familiar topic,  themselves.

The official objectives of the speech are:
  • To start speaking in front of an audience
  • To discover the speaking skills you have and find out which speaking skills you can improve.
In my opinion the Ice Breaker has two more important objectives:
  • Let your fellow club member get to know you
  • To start thinking about your personal stories

So many speakers create powerful speeches using personal stories.   See Bill Clinton’s  I Met A Girl’ speech about Hillary at the 2016 Democratic Convention for a perfect example of this technique.

Vera painted  three pictures for us using words.  She  admitted at the end of her speech that we didn’t know where she grew up, what she studied or how she makes her living now.  But through her pictures we  got to know who Vera is  – a person who approaches life honestly and doesn’t want to miss out on experiencing its emotional highs, lows and whatever it throws at her.  She was inspiring and entertaining.

At the end of the evening, Michael, a special person in Vera’s life, presented her with the Ice Breaker Ribbon, to mark this first milestone in the Toastmasters journey.

This was just one of the great events of that meeting. To read more about what else happened see the Bamberg Toastmasters Facebook page  for great pictures and a wonderful summary of the fun evening.

Elections at Bamberg Toastmasters – Welcome our 6 new Club Officers

Toastmasters – where leaders are made. That’s the Toastmasters slogan.

“I thought it was about speaking and not about leading…,” is what you may be thinking.

The answer is: it is about both and many a Toastmaster has learned so much about leadership that they were able to further their career becoming an executive or even started their own business. This TM year six people get the chance to improve their leadership skills and help our club move forward successfully until June 30th, when from the 1st July the next officers team will be taking over.

Leadership roles at Toastmasters

Meet our officers below and see what they will be doing for the next 8 months.

 

We wish them lots of success with the tasks ahead.

Another Intriguing Meeting

It was a meeting just packed with a variety of intriguing topics:

Greenery… it’s the Pantone color of the year! This is what we learned from Axel, our Toastmaster of the evening who chose the Colors as the evening’s theme. The color greenery is described as  ‘fresh and zesty’, which coincidentally also describes an evening with the Bamberg Toastmasters.

The captain with a red shirt joke, was Christina’s spontaneous joke that was not only hilarious but amazingly  fit perfectly with  the color theme!

How to Evaluate to Motivate is what we learned in an educational given by Alexandra.  The focus of her talk was on delivering speech evaluations that will really help our members develop their public speaking skills. But the these techniques can be transferred to providing effective feedback in all other areas of our lives, e.g. to our children, work colleagues, students, etc. There is so much potential to grow when we receive good feedback.  You can read a really useful article about how you can personally grow from feedback in the lastest issue of the Toastmasters Magazine.

A tale about a donkey and monkey allowed our minds to escape the real world and enter a fairytale for 7 minutes, thanks to Neel. Retelling a story was Neel’s first project in the Storytelling manual. Stories aren’t just for children anymore. Read the Forbes magazine article, Storytelling as a Leadership Tool.

Learning by doing is the Toastmasters way and we got to practice the evaluation skills that we learned. Lucie gave her humorous speech in preparation for the Division I conference. And the rest of us had a good laugh – then gave her our feedback.

It was a great meeting and there’s more fun to look forward to. For example…

Our Club Charter Party IS on Sunday December 3rd

Woohoo! Let’s celebrate the founding of this great club!

A Cure for Mumbling

Say this 4 times in a row. Saying it faster each time:

‘Three free throws. ‘

It’s a workout for your whole mouth that should cure you of mumbling. This was one of  warmup exercises given to us by our Toastmaster of the evening, Debbie, to practice really using the power of our voice to enhance our speeches.

Delilah used her extremely polite voice and lovely British accent to explain the challenges of being polite. She delivered an entertaining speech with a message.

Axel and his “award”

Axel accepted the Golden Garden Gnome with grace, dignity and sincerity in his project “Accepting An Award”.  His deliberate slow pace of his speech conveyed dignity and appreciation. He also included colorful anecdotes when he thanked those who helped him achieve this award.  If Axel ever wins an Oscar, he will ace that thank you speech.

We also learned what does ‘Quality of Life’ mean for different members from different cultures, thanks to the good questions posed to us by our Table Topics Master, Malda.

It was a fun and educational  meeting and there is more to look forward to at our next meeting on October 9th. There will be another speech and an educational on giving speech evaluations.

Come join us!

Axel not showing so much “dignity” afterwards. :-))))

Success for our candidates at the Area Conference

On Saturday the Area Conference took place in Gostenhof in Nuremberg. All 6 Franconian clubs were represented: Bamberg, Erlangen, Nuremberg, Noris, Rhetoriker and Fränkly Speaking (our advanced club).

Over 30 toastmasters joined in for a fun afternoon with entertaining speeches and table topics. They chatted with the members of the other clubs over a cup of coffee and cake and cheered during the award ceremony.

Bamberg can be really proud of its two very successful candidates:

Frank and Lucie

Frank and Lucie

Frank came second in German AND English Table Topics and Lucie came first in the German Humorous Speech contest. Congratulations to both of them.

The contestants

The contestants receive their certificate of participation

Martha and Joanna from Noris Toastmasters enjoying coffee and cake

Have a look at all those happy faces. The next step will be the Division Conference on October 23rd in Augsburg, when all Toastmasters of Bavaria will meet for the next competition.

Bamberg Toastmasters’ first ever Club Contest

Our first ever Fall Contest took place at newly chartered Bamberg Toastmasters. We had candidates in 4 (in words FOUR) disciplines: Humorous Speech English and German & Table Topics English and German. Wow! Below you can see the winners from right to left: Neel (English Speech & Table Topic), Lucie (German Speech), Frank (German Table Topic) and the contest chair Alexandra.

Our contest winners

Congratulations! They will now go on to the next level at the Area Conference in Nuremberg on September 23rd. Please be there and support them. Entrance is free. We start at 1.30 pm. Please download the Agenda to find out more and get directions.

We also had 3 guests – all were duly impressed and will be back for more.
This was the first meeting in our new location – and it was blissfully quiet, there are lots of free parking spaces and it is close to the train station.

So what’s keeping you? Want to improve your public speaking? Join our next meeting on Sept. 25th at 7.30 pm.

Bamberg Toastmasters has moved to Stadtteilzentrum Starkenfeld

We have moved

We have moved!

Join us in our new quarters: Stadtteilzentrum Starkenfeld. Lot’s of advantages: close to the train station, easy to reach, calm and quiet – ideal for our needs. Here is how to find us:

See you all there for our Club Contest on the 11th September.

SUCCEEEEEEEEEESSSSS!

Pop the champagne – we are chartering. Now it is official: After just 4 months we have found 20 members for Bamberg Toastmasters! HORAY! We are over the moon as you can see in the picture!!!! We shall be graciously accepting your congratulations.

Bamberg Toastmasters over the moon!

Bamberg Toastmasters over the moon!

Courage

Courage

Courage was the title of Christina’s Ice Breaker speech at our meeting on June 26th.  She reminded me that courage is an essential ingredient for personal growth.

Christina inspired me with her speech where she talked about having the courage to journey across Chile on horseback. It turned out to be a life-changing experience.  After hearing her story I thought she shouldn’t be afraid of anything now. But she acknowledged that she had to call on her courage to stand in front our club to talk about herself in her first speech.

Marc, a guest from Nuremberg Toastmasters gave a speech on Communicating Change from the manual “Speeches By Management”. Marc challenged himself this year to complete 10 speeches and to compete in 2 speech contest at the district level. When you challenge yourself you can’t be afraid of failure. He had the courage to challenge himself and he succeeded!

On that evening Malda, Vera, Theresia and  Neel also joined Bamberg Toastmasters. Welcome everyone and congratulations on taking this courageous step.

Come visit us at our next meeting. Guests are always welcome.