Toastmasters was started in the US in 1924 when Ralph C. Smedley held the first meeting in a basement in a YMCA in Santa Ana, California. He wanted to help people who needed “training in the art of public speaking” and decided the training format should be similar to a social club. Members were then able to practice speaking skills in a supportive, informal atmosphere. Since then, Toastmasters International has grown – today, there are more than 13,000 clubs and more than 270,000 members in 116 countries. By the way, in the 1930’s the word “toastmaster” referred to a person who proposed toasts and introduced speakers at a banquet. We still keep it as it mirrors the pleasant, social atmosphere that can be found at a speaker’s club meeting.
At our club meeting in Mannheim you will find this congenial atmosphere – we meet every 2nd and 4th Tuesday in Bürgerhaus Neckarstadt-West, Lutherstr. 15-17 at 19:15. The club was founded in 2006 and currently has 26 members. We are very happy to welcome new guests and show them how our meetings are conducted.
- A member who has taken on the role of toastmaster of the evening leads through the three main parts of a usual club meeting: The first part consists of a warm-up round where everyone can give a short comment on a random topic. Afterwards, members (and sometimes guests) are called to give impromptu speeches for a minute or so. These are the “table topics”.
- After a break, up to four members present their prepared speeches, ranging from 4 to 8 minutes.
- In the third part, these speeches will be constructively evaluated and the members who have taken on roles, such as timekeeper or grammarian, will give their reports. The evening ends with a general evaluation and club business. Those who feel like a drink or a snack are invited to join at a pub near the meeting room.
You can learn a lot if you come to us: On the one hand, you improve your speaking and communication skills by giving prepared speeches – everything you need to know about this you will find in the “Competent Communication” manual which will be given to you if you become a member. On the other hand, you will be more and more at ease with becoming a “Competent Leader” by working through the accompanying manual. You can work at your own pace. Develop your personality through speaking – come and visit us now!