Meeting on April 21, 2014 in Chez Clément (St Michel)

By Sean Ryan, Vice President, Membership

The Club President, Antonio Meza, welcomed members and guests to the meeting which was held on Easter Monday.

He began by asking each guest to say where they were from and why they were at the meeting. We had a very diverse range of guests from India (via the United Arab Emirates), Hungary, an American from outside Paris, a Spaniard from Barcelona, a Ukrainian via North Africa and a member of the TM75 Club.

Antonio introduced the Toastmaster of the Evening who happened to be himself! The theme of the evening was to be Easter. He gave out the awards to the winners of the Evaluation Contest which was held two weeks previously on April 7:

  • Elisabeth Dancet (third prize)
  • Antonio Meza (second prize)
  • Bob Mohl (first prize)

Antonio and Elisabeth went on to take part in the Area 2 Evaluation Contest on April 12 (as Bob was already representing Toastmasters of Paris).

Visiting Toastmaster from TM75, Amir Toly, gave a joke which he had heard at one of the club’s meetings. “This guy was previously married to a woman. He rubbed on a lamp and a genie appeared. The genie said that he would grant three wishes but would be double for the man’s wife. The man wished for a house and he ex-wife got two. The man then wished for US$1 million and his ex-wife got US$2 million. So, the man asked for this third wish for the genie to scare him half to death!”

Heli Aru provided the Word of the Evening. As the topic of the evening was Easter or new beginnings, hope, promises the word was to be auspicious.

The Speech Tip of the Evening was giving by Elisabeth Dancet. She advised everyone that when we prepare our speeches that we should first think of the end. We should think of message that we want to leave with the audience and that we have a call to action.

Prepared Speeches
Rose Marie Burke in her speech entitled ‘The Fastest, Most Efficient Workout Ever’ demonstrated not only her research capabilities (as this was the speech project Research Your Topic from the Competent Communication Manual) but also her physical fitness. She explained that in just seven minutes with 12 exercises that significant fitness can be attained. She presented various results of her research to prove that it does work.

After receiving the Competent Communication Award Sean Ryan is now embarking on the advanced communication speeches beginning with the Public Relations Manual. His Goodwill Speech ‘Speaking with Impact’ he introduced the audience to public speaking and some techniques that can be used. The purpose of the speech was to promote the benefits of joining a public speaking club to gain these skills. Indeed, his speech was so well received that many of the guests spoke to him after the meeting to learn about Toastmasters.

The third prepared speech was Bob Mohl who used the opportunity to practice his competition speech ‘The other side of trust’ which he would give at the Division N International Speech Contest on April 26. He told the story of how some misunderstandings and the making of assumptions has led to a severe lack of trust in some personal relationships.

Table Topics
As the theme was Easter Fabien Nieber called upon a number of those present to tell us what type of egg could be brought by the Easter Bunny:

  • David Logan would be the golden Easter egg
  • Antonio Meza saw his inspiration in Willy Wonka and in particular ice cream eggs
  • Heli Aru used her native Estonia to mention having colored Easter eggs and being a chicken
  • Naim Drid illustrated new beginnings by having an animal from the Sahara desert

Speech Evaluations
Antonio complemented Rose on her speech, her research and the progress that she has made from her first speech. He suggested that she specifies what is in it for each member of the audience and to use more personal stories.

In his evaluation Jean Delaunay highlighted the positive aspects of Sean’s speech and in particular how to overcome the fear of public speaking and of being an introvert.

David found that Bob’s speech was balanced, well developed and well-acted.  He recommended that Bob had more eye contact with different members of the audience, have different voices for each character and to be more engaged.

General Evaluation
Elisabeth Dancet led the general evaluation discussion which concluded that:

  • Let the audience know when there are changes in who is doing a meeting role
  • Speak with a stronger voice when there is noise
  • Use short questions for the Table Topics

Ribbon Winners
We had an unusual situation as we had ties for both the Best Table Topics and the Best Speaker:
Best Table Topics: David Logan and Antonio Meza
Best Speakers: Sean Ryan and Bob Mohl
Best Evaluator: Not given due to two time disqualifications


Next Meeting
Our next club meeting will take place at Chez Clément, 9 place Saint-André des Arts, 75006 Paris on Monday, May 5, 2014.

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