Frequently Asked Questions

Yes. Toastmaster dues of £72 are paid every 6 months. For more info on joining Southside Speakers, please go to our ‘How much does it cost ‘ page.

Our meetings begin at 7:30pm and end by 9.45pm. We have a break after the first segment of our meeting. During this time, members and guests can socialise, enjoy refreshments, and get things set up for the next portion of the meeting

After joining Toastmasters you will receive in the mail a new member kit. This will contain all the materials needed to start the program. In addition, you will receive the Toastmaster magazine. This publication contains many interesting and useful articles which will help you in your speaking and in learning more about the Toastmasters Organization.

The first part of our meeting begins with a welcome and short introductions. This is followed by 2-4 prepared speeches, usually 5-7 minutes each. Each of these speeches are evaluated. There is a 15-20 minutes break for networking. Following this, we have a Table Topics session. Table topics are a set of 1-2 minute speeches delivered off the cuff. There is a feedback session and then closing remarks.

There is no set time limit for this. The Toastmasters Organization encourages its members to set personal goals and to work at their own pace. Some individuals advance rapidly through the program while others prefer to progress more slowly. Other factors individual to each club also weigh into how quickly a person can complete the necessary requirements.

On an average meeting night we generally have anywhere between 15 and 25 members. Southside Speakers currently has around 27 members. We also usually have anywhere from 1-5 guests per meeting.

Active participation in Toastmasters can provide you with the confidence and skill needed to tackle many communication challenges on the job. Several of our members have reported that Toastmasters has helped them advance in their careers and make favorable impressions in job interviews. Toastmasters International is a well-known, respected organization. Active membership in Toastmasters is a valuable asset.

One such factor is club size. Since speaking opportunities need to be distributed fairly to all members, very large clubs would logically offer fewer chances to speak. Within smaller or medium-sized clubs such as Southside Speakers, however, speaking opportunities would likely be greater. Another factor affecting completion time is the frequency of club meetings. Like most of the clubs, Southside Speakers meets twice a month.

Just as our bodies get out of shape when we fail to exercise, our speaking skills suffer when we fail to practice them. The effective evaluations you will receive in Southside Speakers will help you to keep these skills in shape.

Yes, credit can be given for up to two speeches per manual given outside a Toastmasters club providing 1) the Vice President of Education agrees in advance, 2) a Toastmasters evaluator is present and provides both a written and an oral project evaluation, and 3) you meet all project objectives.

Along with helping you to achieve better communication skills, the Toastmasters organization encourages its members to share what they have learned. Sometimes this is through a one to one, mentoring relationship. Other times it is by preparing members to eventually assume leadership positions in their club, in the District and in the Toastmasters Organization.

Active membership means attending meetings faithfully and participating regularly in the meetings. It is more difficult to gain benefits from Toastmasters if you attend meetings infrequently since Toastmasters is an interactive program. One of the main advantages Toastmasters has over other speech programs is that it provides an opportunity for members to regularly practice and continue refining speaking skills.

Southside Speakers is composed of members with a wide variety of occupations, backgrounds and interests. Toastmasters is open to anyone 18 years of age or older. The age of our current membership ranges from people in their early 20s right up to people of retirement age plus! We believe this diversity gives us insight into many different perspectives about life. Since we also have some members who are long time members in the Toastmasters Organization, we can learn much from their experience.

When you join Toastmasters, you will receive a Communications and Leadership Manual (sometimes referred to as the Basic Manual). This book contains assignments for ten prepared speeches and other very useful information about Toastmasters and the various assignments you will be asked to perform.

No, you may attend as a guest and observe our meetings before deciding to join.

No. As our guest, you will be introduced to the group at the beginning of the meeting. At the conclusion of each meeting, we provide an opportunity for members and guests to informally comment on the meeting quality if they choose to do so.

No, surprise guests are always welcome anytime at our meetings. However, calling ahead gives you an opportunity to speak personally with one of our members and to ask questions about Toastmasters or our club.

Yes, when you join our club you will be assigned a mentor to guide, answer your questions, and encourage you. This person will be an experienced member who has volunteered for the job. Southside Speakers has a wealth of experienced members available who are interested in helping you to be successful.

In Toastmasters members are given the opportunity to get involved in meetings through carrying out various assignments. Members take turns with the different tasks involved in running a meeting. In addition, during the Table Topics session, members practice the art of giving impromptu talks.

Many of us have occasions beyond Toastmasters where we may be asked to assume leadership roles in organizing a school committee, a community group, or perhaps a project on the job. Knowing how to run meetings and make effective presentations can mean the difference between success and failure at these endeavors.

It really depends upon what a person wishes to gain from Toastmasters. Since maintaining proficiency in speaking is dependent upon practice, it would be reasonable to expect that the longer a member stays in Toastmasters, the more he or she could gain