13 Dec 2017

Every day a meeting

I did not exaggerate when I wrote: "every day I have a Toastmasters meeting". 

Only one of them is near me: twice a month, late Wednesday : it begins at 7:15 and ends after 10 pm with a break. 
100% Online meetings, like Witty Storytellers Online twice a month Thursdays very early for me, or Global Trainers Online, early every second Saturday, or Firebirds collective, Sundays altering hours.

This picture is from a special meeting for my project Lessons Learned, in fact to speak about the event we created and realized together. At this special meeting, last Thursday, outside our normal meetings at Witty Storytellers only the five of us attended. Organizers, Storytellers and Audience.

All the others are either "Remote access" to groups that meet far away, like Yakima Toastmasters, Tuesdays, DTM Masters Sunday once a month or EZ-Speak alternate Wednesday afternoons, like in this picture: here shown only the three of us who attended remote from different places in the globe and the room. 

Sometimes the room can be seen easy and we feel almost being there, other time it seems far away from us. With time, we will learn all the techniques to make them best possible experience. We learn as we go and so do those who are together in a room.

Here is Paul White, from Virginia, USA in the DTM Masters meeting: he was the General Evaluator. They got this time a great microphone, and arranged the "podium" so we can see the speakers well and from time to time the audience also. 

I even got to see at a time the huge screen where we could get a glimpse how they from the room see us, those arriving from far away places through the Web, the Internet connection, and our own computers. 
Monday, we had fun at a Royal Roads Toastmasters meeting (I am coach for the club now) online, with Santa Brian Dodd president, all the way to to north of Canada, near Vancouver. But the attendees you see are also from Europe, New Zealand, Africa! And three of four, were for Pathways projects.

It does seem to us that we are all together, even if for some of us is evening while for others is morning or noon. For some it is winter time for others early summer. But here in the meeting, we are all together.

We were a lot more presents at Global Trainers Online, probably also because it was a celebration of Chartering Certificates we received now all, with many of us speaking.

Two attending, from two divers Airports and even when it departed, we could at least see them if no more hear. Another time we had a member speaking from a moving car! As you see, I was also in as was Santa.
Many of us belong to more then one online club, and even when not, visit each other's clubs from our home. We also had a special guest this time, who accepted to be our General Evaluator.

Yesterday, I went all the way to Oragon to assist to Yakina Toastmasters meeting, we were almost as many online this time then those attending their breakfast meeting and eating at the beginning. It felt as we were at the table with them. Seen them taking their meal in the pub's basement room.

Alas, this time the speaker seemed farther and for once the voice was less clear, I could still Evaluate one of the speakers who gave her second Pathways speech with lots of drawings a bit hidden by a head for us, online attendees. We still had fun hearing about two and four legged people thousands year ago living, then dying, then understanding each other. Old myths and stories revived for the Holiday season. 

And here is the Royal Roads Toastmaster President as Santa, introducing the Monday meeting. 

In Zoom, you can view in Gallery view: all present seen in small rectangles, or Speaker view, when the speaker is seen big and the attendees in small. 

About different possibilities of Zoom, that more and more clubs use now, another time. 

This post is just to give you a taste of how busy I am and how time flies fast as I go from one meeting to other: some days two Toastmasters meeting one after the other. Still, I have time to prepare my project I work now on, if fact two projects. 

The Lesson Learned project is the most difficult for me, as I just discovered that thing called 360 degree evaluation. I asked after the special meeting those attending to send me, some did very long (and wonderful one with a lot of detail in it), others send it half or one third filled, and yet another showing she was just angry now for something I said and called me "old fashioned". 

The feedbacks are so different, from each other! 

One feedback I found through all of them: I am a bit too decided when I go for something, and should listen more carefully, or longer to those with whom I work. One of the toastmasters adds "I am probably the same", other said "she walks to talk", each added something different. 

I believed, the the Lessons Learned should be after an event about the Event, but... in the feedback form, a lot more questions are asked about the organizer, more then about the lessons learned in the event itself. Now, I have to read all again, summarize it, make some conclusions. A lot of work!

At the same time, as this is my last assignment for the Leadership Development Path, I begun to write in my notebook about the whole path, and even my Toastmasters Journey, as it is asked in the Reflect on your Path. So much to write, so much to remember!

1 comment:

Magda said...

Evaluations have pearls and I think at times those pearls are just as had to find than in real life. I wish I had a dollar for every time someone told me “If it was my speech…” Goodness what an easy way to be not responsible for them. Firstly, it is NOT their speech. They have no idea what access to information you had. What was the quality and quantity of the information and neither do they know why you have chosen to structure your speech and chosen your words the way you did. I still find evaluations super, superficial. Especially those from people who don’t know you. I am not convinced that a person new to Toastmasters and evaluations can deliver a great evaluation. I have never experienced it. I also know that we have different opinions on this. Recently, I got a mediocre evaluation but in my email I got this note: “Your story has had a profound effect…” That is powerful. It is not in my evaluation but in a private note to me. That for me is my evaluation, not the “stuff” according to the TM evaluation guidelines.