District Council & District Executive Committee (DEC) – update
Following a very successful District Council (Sat 5 May) and DEC meeting on (Fri 4 May), we have published all documentation on D91 website. Please take a moment to take a look at these important documents:
Toastmasters International CEO, Dan Rex visit to D91
Towards the end of the visit of Toastmasters International CEO Dan Rex to D91, Suzi Fish interviewed Dan asked the question “What distinguishes a D91 Conference?”, to which Dan Rex replied “The culture of the members and the clubs, is what distinguishes the district here. There is an aura of excitement; of commitment; of passion for the organisation, in a way that I’ve not seen before.” This is a testament to the fantastic work our members are contributing to growth of our District. I am a very proud District Director. You can see the whole interview on our D91 YouTube channel:
GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) comes in to force on 25 May 18. If you have not already done so, please make sure you review and implement the guidance provided by the Toastmasters International Legal team. Please see D91 website for further updates.
In addition, a number of our members have been sharing ideas on WhatsApp and will be providing additional guidance, which we will make available on the D91 website.
Andy Hammond – Programme Qulaity Director (PQD)
Thanks to all your great work we already have 94 Distinguished Clubs this year, which is over 60% and fourth best out of the 106 Districts world-wide. There are many more that look likely to achieve Distinguished status in the coming weeks too.
A special mention to our President’s Distinguished clubs:
- the four clubs that have achieved all 10 goals this year: London Victorians, Early Bird Speakers, MLP London Bridge Speakers and Oxford Orators Club;
- also the ten clubs with 9 goals so far: London Business School Public Speaking Club, Guildford Speakers Club, Berkeley Square Speakers Toastmasters Club, Maidenhead Speakers Club, Covent Garden Speakers, City Limits Speakers, The Speakers of Croydon Club, Wessex Speakers Club, Malvern Speakers and Cardiff Toastmasters.
Do have a look and see how your club is performing on the district dashboard.
We are now receiving the reports from Area Directors following their second round of club visits and will be looking for any particular issues that clubs need support on, and also for examples of excellence in clubs. Those will be shared with the incoming leaders to further improve your experiences next year.
What an amazing weekend we had at Bracknell earlier this month! I can’t thank Helena Brewer and the team often enough for their extraordinary organisation in delivering an exceptional event. The Chief Executive of Toastmasters International, Dan Rex, was suitably impressed.
With only one District Conference each year we are planning well ahead. There is already a team in place looking at arrangements for the Kent Conference in Ashford in May 2019, and early work has started on options for May 2020 in Canary Wharf. We hope that a venue can be found along the M4 corridor for 2021 before returning to London in 2022. If you would like to be involved in any of those events then do please let me know.
It is now over two months since Pathways rolled out and I have heard of many members who have started their new journey. The Pathways Guides are still there to offer support to your clubs until the end of June. We are looking at how we can continue to support you after that, including webinars and training events. If you have any suggestions then please let me know.
Also, I am looking for stories from members of their experiences with Pathways. If you, or one of your members, has a positive example you would like to share then let me know.
Florian Bay – Club Growth Director (CGD)
Unbelievably, the end of this Toastmasters year is set to be even busier than its beginning! The race is on to finish the year on a bang and there is activity everywhere in the District. Several new club launches are already on the calendar and a strong pipeline of new club is already established for the next Toastmasters year. Guests are flocking to your clubs too! This Monday I was at a club meeting attended by 26 guests and that’s for a club that doesn’t even have a website nor any social media presence and no, it’s not even a corporate club! If they can achieve this so can all of you!
Our final membership building contest of the year, ‘Beat the Clock’ is now in full swing! 9 Clubs have already beaten the clock by adding 5 or more members to their ranks and I’m sure that more will follow them soon. The 9 clubs are:
- London Business School Public Speaking Club
- Camberley Speakers
- Berkeley Square Speakers Toastmasters Club
- London Corinthians Toastmasters
- Holborn Speakers
- Battle Speakers Club
- Central London Toastmasters
- Barking Toastmasters
- West London Speakers Club
As the ‘pizza challenge’ was so popular, we’ve decided to bring it back to end the year on a high and to celebrate by having some pizza al fresco in the sun. Every club adding 5 new members will receive a banner ribbon from Toastmasters International. Additionally District 91 will give prizes to clubs achieving the following:
- Bronze Award – Add 5+ Members – Receive free packs of ribbons
- Silver Award – Add 10+ Members – Receive £50 towards a pizza party celebration event
- Gold Award – Add 20+ Members – Receive free timings lights OR a projector
Remember that growing your club is a lot simpler than it seems and that the smallest actions can have the biggest impact.
- Create ‘guest packs’ for guests containing a Toastmaster magazine, a Welcome to Toastmasters ribbon, some flyers, a membership form, a guest booklet.
- Ensure that every guest is speaking with a club member. Remind club members that socialising with guests takes priority over catching-up with fellow club members. It is always heart breaking to see guests sitting on their own while members laugh with each other!
- Explain the benefits of the Toastmasters Pathways learning experience. Everybody can now tailor the educational program to meet his or her own needs. No more one size fits all!
- Start and finish the meeting on time and ensure that all roles are filled and performed well. Every meeting of your club is an opportunity to sell it to the wider world. What kind of memories and souvenirs do you want your guests to take away from your club?
- Give your guest a chance to give some feedback and speak at the end of the meeting. Simple but often overlooked!