In the past four years as a Toastmaster, I have had the opportunity to listen to some of the greatest speakers of all time. A few weeks back, I was a part of a Toastmasters Division level conference. We had around 700 registrations for the event that included 20 humorous speech contestants and 20 evaluation contestants. The icing on the cake was the keynote by DTM Aditya Maheswaran who was the 1st runner up at World Championship Public Speaking 2015 that was held at Las Vegas.
In most of the events, the keynote sessions are talks given by eminent speakers about the topics that are close to their heart followed by a few questions from the audience. But here we were in for a surprise. He asked us to shoot questions and assured us that he will answer each question from his experiences and learnings.
Let me share a few questions and his responses to the same.
Q : What is the one thing that should be included in my speech to make it world class? What makes that difference between a good speech and world winning speech?
A : Its really very simple. Always concentrate on what message you want to drive home and what impact your speech must create in the minds of the audience. If you have figured that out clearly in your speech, the rest is easy.
Think of what you can leave the audience with rather than what you can should include to make your speech better.
Q : How do I become better at Toastmasters?
A : Toastmasters is an amazing platform where in whatever you do here will make your life better everywhere. This helps you to become greater at work, life and much more.
Q : When I give a bad speech, I get disappointed and become very reluctant towards giving my next speech. How do I overcome that?
A. The only place where you can fail and fail successfully is at Toastmasters.
The only time you need to feel bad is when you feel you have not given your 100%
Q : How can I make the most of being in Toastmasters?
A. Let me ask you a question. I take everyone of you to a beach and ask you to bring water from the sea to me, how much of water can you bring?
(Random answers : 1 litre, 2 litres, 10 litres etc )
The amount of water that you are capable of bringing back from the sea totally depends on what you carry along with you to fetch the water. It can be a small glass, a large jug, a bottle or a bucket and depending on that, your quantities vary.
Similarly how much you can take back from Toastmasters depends on what vessel you bring along to take that.
It was one amazing session where words of wisdom were shared in abundance and I am sure every Toastmaster would have thought about his first step into Toastmasters and how it has been fruitful ever since.
DTM Aditya Maheswaran, World No : 2 of Public Speaking 2015 would be here with us @ Coimbatore Toastmasters for the very first time on November 14, 2015
You can follow this page for more details.