At the end of every meeting the President always invites any guests that have attended to give some feedback on their experience of the evening. It is a two way thing isn’t it? We want to make sure that our guests have enjoyed themselves, and their feedback helps us to consider ways we can improve. Last night was no exception and it was rewarding to hear when our guest replied ” I have thoroughly enjoyed myself and I did not expect to laugh so much”
Table Topics is a regular feature of every Tunbridge Wells Speakers meeting and it provides an opportunity for people to give an impromptu speech, lasting around 2 minutes, on a subject determined by the Table Topics Master. No-one is forced to take part and guests do, on occasion, decide to be spectators only, as they acclimatise to the environment of a meeting. Last night our guest opted not to participate and sat happily laughing and enjoying all the other two minute contributions by the members of the club. At the end however, when the Table Topics Master was about to pass the responsibility of the meeting back to the Toastmaster, our guests hand shot up and with a smile she asked “can I do one”? I believe taking that plunge and summoning the courage to get involved helped to contribute to an enjoyable and rewarding evening for her, and that rewarding feeling was extended to everyone, as we have all been in that place, hesitant and a little anxious, concerned what people may think of us, nervous at making ourselves vulnerable.
District 91 of Toastmaster International held their Spring 2016 conference in London last weekend. One of the afternoon workshops was facilitated by Elizabeth Toohig and her subject was “Table Topics. It’s a TREAT!” During her workshop Elizabeth shared some of the strategies she adopted which helped her prepare for the 2014 District 91 Table Topics contest, which she won. Clearly it was a winning strategy for Elizabeth and full details can be found on her website by following this link
The strategy outlined by Elizabeth is not limited just to Table Topics and can be adopted to help with all sorts of life events, like business meetings, interviews, impromptu talks at weddings or parties, there is no end to the value that can be gained.
It would be great to see more guests joining us for an evening, if only to find out what goes on and discover why people enjoy themselves so much…