Month: October 2010

10 things you might not know about Toastmasters

Who Knew?1. Clubs are required to vote into membership every new member – before they officially become a member – before the application is sent/submitted to TI. (” … your club must vote in members in order to retain its charter”)
2. Speech contest contestants are not required to attend a contest briefing.
3. To get credit every speech project must have a written and oral evaluation – even if done outside Toastmasters club meeting.
4. The first Ralph Smedley led ‘Toastmasters’ meeting was not in 1924 (although previous Toastmasters clubs closed and did not lead to what is TI today)
5. There is no specified penalty in a speech contest for going outside the official speaking area. It is all up to the judges.
6. You do not have to do the speech projects in order (in any manual – not even in the CC manual)
7. You may do a speech more than once, with different objectives, for credit as a different speech project (hopefully it will be better the next time)
8. A person may not be elected to second consecutive 12-month term as club president (although TI does not ever seem to enforce this)
9. You can complete more than one CC manual in a single year (but each club may only get credit for one CC award/member). This applies to ANY individual educational award – not just a CC.
10. You can only get credit for one Speech and one CL role per meeting.

Did I get something wrong?

Website of the month – 2010-September

A blog based club website.
I have reviewed club websites and awarded ‘UmErYouKnow.com Website of the Month’ award to a custom website and to a freetoasthost website. This month, the winner is a 3rd method: a blog based club website.

and the winner is …
https://www.torontodebate.org

This is a very nice looking and well working website!

A long list of very small suggestions:

  • The link in the top menu: Meeting Resources goes to a page named “meeting-roles” (this is a bit confusing). The page could be improved by making the
    list of items into live links to pages (on this site or TI) which provide details about each item. Similarly for the ‘Tracks’ pages, add links

  • The ‘Contact Us’ page is a bit bare and ‘cold’, Adding a simple bit of text might make the page seem friendlier and less intimidating to non-members.
  • On the calendar on the right, every meeting has a mouse over with the same location/time info. It would be better to have that standard info on the page without a mouseover.
  • It would be nice to see a link to their District website
  • If one drills through ‘How to Join’ then clicks on ‘I’d like to attend a Meeting’ the bland ‘Contact Us’ page is presented. It might be better to take the user to a page with the upcoming meeting time, location and a map – do they need to send an email to attend?

So many good things done well!

  • The site is clean, neat and organized throughout. It looks classy. It exudes confidence, welcoming and competence. Nice logo!
  • The calendar on the right side is great in showing that the club is alive and that the website is live and recent.
  • The website has info for visitors as well as members (Club Awards Received)
  • he FAQ page is excellent, easy to read and understand, lots of useful info.
  • The home page is important on a website like this – people may leave if it is not well done. The TDT home page is well done. It is neat, clean, organized and has lots of white space.
  • The icons on the home page are bright, colorful and interesting.
  • The list “Past Debate Topics” works well – it is fun, provocative and gives a great insight into the nature/culture of the club.
  • The bold Q & A on the top right on the home page is perhaps the most excellent, simple, and highly effective to-the-point feature.

I could go on 🙂 but I recommend that you visit this site and see for yourself what a nice blog based club website can be!


Previous Winners: