The primary duty of The Toastmaster of the Day (Toastmaster) is to conduct the meeting based on assignments for the week in the agenda prepared by the Vice President of Education.
The General Evaluator is responsible for the evaluation of following team: Timer, Ah Counter, Grammarian and the Speech Evaluators. (See: item 202). Taking on this role improves critical thinking, organizational skills, time management skills, motivational and team-building skills.
In Toastmasters, feedback is called evaluation. The evaluator assesses the speakers or leader, encourages them and motivates them in further development. The Speech Evaluators, using the guidelines in the speech manuals, observe the speeches and prepares written and oral feedback for the speaker on their presentation. As evaluator, you may be guided by the following:
- When delivering your report, use the third person or be personal and use “I” (eg. “TM Ana, you said that you don’t care… Instead, you could’ve said …” or “You did well when you spoke about that lady and her emotions. But it would have been more impactful had your gestures had been more exaggerated by touching eyes and heart (demonstrates)).
- Be brief, yet clear and thorough.
- Use the sandwich evaluation “PiP” (P- positive; i-(need) improvement; P-positive). Firstly, start off with positive feedback (authentic praise of something they did recently), then provide your constructive criticism on just one thing (at most two things) but offering concrete methods for improvement and End on a positive note.
- Provide your constructive criticism; emphasize the strengths of the speaker but also how the message could have been more effectively delivered by using an example.
- Praise a successful speech and then explain specifically what it was that caused you think this way.
- Do not repeat a point made by the other evaluators (eg. Speech was too long; the timer had already presented this information).
The prepared speech session is a main component in the Toastmaster program. The speeches are generally fulfilling assignments in one of the Toastmasters manuals starting with the Competent Communicator manual which contains ten speech assignments. After completing the Competent Communicator manual members choose two of fifteen advanced manuals, each containing five speech assignments. For any speaker, preparation is the basis for success.
Each meeting segment is timed. Throughout the meeting, the timer record and indicate the time for the speakers, using multicolor time card’ reminders. Mainly, green card emphases when the speech is long enough according to their project; yellow card when a speaker reaches the midpoint of time range allotted and red card when a speaker reaches the end of hi/hers speaking time.
Timer is responsible for monitoring timing of speeches (vary by assignment e.g. for CC manual is usually 5-7 min whist for the advanced speeches is much longer), table topics (1-2 minuts) and evaluators (2-3 minutes).
One of the members prepares topic for the Table Topics portion of the meeting, enabling every participants, who aren’t assigned, to be active. Themes or topics are decided by the Topicsmaster.
The objective of Table Topics is to practice the skills of impromptu speaking in those situations in life when we are presented with a question for which we have minimal time to prepare a response. An energy-charged Table Topics session can set the tone for an energetic meeting so, be creative.
The main roles of Grammarian are to selects a “Word for the Day” and to observe correct flow of language. Grammarian display the “Word of the Day” , define it, give a brief definition with a visual aid, prepare a sentence showing how the word should be used and ask that anyone speaking during any part of the meeting use it.
During the meeting the Grammarian listens to everyone’s word usage and writes down any awkward use or misuse of the language (incomplete sentences, sentences that change direction in midstream, incorrect grammar, malapropisms, etc.) with a note of who erred.
The objective is to helps meeting participants to increase their vocabulary and to improve their grammar in everyday conversation.
The purpose of the Ah-Counter is to note any overused words or filler sounds used as a crutch by anyone who speaks during the meeting. Words may be inappropriate interjections, such as and, well, but, so and you know. Sounds may be ah, um or er. Ah-Counter also note repeated words or idioms.
It is recommended to categorized Ah-Counter’s log on the way that speakers receive exact record of overlong pauses, overused words and filler sounds. In this way, the speaker gets a clear picture of what needs to be corrected.