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To Coach is to be Coached

District News
May Ghali with Balraj Arunalsalam, Toastmasters International Past President at the District 48 2019 Spring Conference.

By: May Ghali, Current Area 44 Director
Club Coach – Positively Speaking
Immediate Past President – Sarasota Toastmasters Club

In the three years since I became a Toastmaster, I achieved my Advanced Communicator Gold as well as my Advanced Leader
Bronze. When I was the president of my club, I competed my
High-Performance Leadership Project. It wasn’t an easy project,
but I prevailed. I am proud to say that my members led our club
to earn the coveted Presidents Distinguished Award that year.

Since joining Toastmasters, I have gained many new skills,
not only in communication but also in leadership. I now have
a better grasp of what it takes to have a thriving club.
It was natural for me to accept the role of club coach.

Coaching is a 2-way relationship

I am the Club Coach for Positively Speaking Toastmasters Club. The club is near my home and has many seasoned members. In fact, I have invited a couple of them to deliver presentations and workshops at my home club. They have 12 members and they are managing because of the tenacity of their seasoned members. It would be a grave mistake to see this club fold.

The members are always warm and friendly during my visits. The officers welcome my recommendations and suggestions. They appreciate my support, which encourages me to be creative in the process.

If needed, I step in and help out during the meetings. This causes me to pay extra attention to how I perform each task. In the process I am honing my own skills.

As mentioned, the club has several seasoned and accomplished members. Some have already earned their Distinguished Toastmaster award; some are published writers and others perform stand-up comedy. I feel I am growing as a Toastmaster just being around such an accomplished group!

As an added bonus, they Include me in their fellowship after the meetings. We discuss everything under the sun. It is fertile ground for new speech topics!

The icing on the cake is that one of the members dedicates his time to video the meeting and immediately emails it to everyone. This is a wonderful way to provide feedback. Watching the video, I can reflect on the meeting and try to improve the next one.

For me, being a club coach is a two-way relationship. Not only the club is gradually inching out of the danger zone, but I am also growing as a Toastmaster and unequivocally as a coach.


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