Archives for Education

Feb ’19 Special educational section: Pathways one year on

Special educational section: Pathways

March the 20th will see the first anniversary of the District 71 roll out of the revitalized educational program that is known as Pathways. This section starts by reviewing how we have got on and then moves towards looking to see what new things are happening and tips for moving forward:

Reviews

  1. How have we got on?
  2. Pathways level 1 and onward
  3. Pathways Benefits – a user summary

New things

  1. The New Engaging Humor Path
  2. Easyspeak Pathways Progress Chart
  3. Pathways Pin Badges Now in Store
  4. Pathways Schematic Chart

Tips going forward

  1. Revised HACKING PATHWAYS for New Members A guide to Basecamp

How have we got on?

By Daniel Sandars DTM, District 71 Public Relations Manager

In November Toastmasters International published Pathways enrolment statistics for all Districts. Worldwide 55% (39-69%) had enrolled in Pathways within which 69% (46-81%) of officers had and 50% (35-68%) of new members (joined after 1st July 2018) had. Within District 71 the figures were Members 44%, Officers 59% and new members 48%. Just published data (Feb 22) has 49% of members, 63% of Officers, and 57% of new members enrolled in Pathways in the District.

You may think that all new members after the roll-out are enrolled on Pathways, but that is not instantly true as it takes time for new members to understand and operate Basecamp (virtual learning environment), choose their paths, and enrol. In clubs that support their new members with electronic and printed level one materials that enrolment step may only occur at the end of their level 1.

Curiously, around one year before our rollout the three pilot District’s D27, D51, and D57, who were a testbed for Pathways development, fully rolled out and they have only reached 61% of Members, 74% of Officers, and 51% of New members enrolled. Clearly there are diminishing returns to the extent of enrolment over time whilst the legacy program runs until 30th June 2020.

One of the stronger patterns in the rollout data is that the more members a club has enrolled on Pathways the more likely new members were to have enrolled. Peer to peer support within the club seems to help new member orientation to Pathways. A key question clubs could thus pro-actively ask is how are we supporting new members and each other with Pathways?

The educational awards registered by our clubs since the first of July, which is the beginning of the current Toastmaster year, provide additional insight. To date we have 595 awards of which around a third are from the Pathways program. The relative rate at which Pathways Awards are being registered is accelerating from around one in ten awards last July to nearing half of awards registered in February

Excitingly, we now have three people who have been awarded all five levels of their paths, thus completing them and moving onto their second paths. Close behind that we have five who have been awarded four levels, six who have been awarded three levels, 25 who have been awarded two levels, and a whopping 134 who have been awarded the first level and are catching up. Well done all.

What paths are members taking?

District 71 Pathways Awards 1st July ’81-22 Feb ’19

Key PM Presentation mastery, IP Innovative Planning, EC Effective Coaching, DL Dynamic Leadership, VC Visionary Communication, PI persuasive Influence, LD Leadership Development, MS Motivational Strategies, SR Strategic relationships, TC Team Collaboration, and PWMENTORINGPGM Pathways Mentoring Program (which is not a Path, but one of the overarching leadership projects)

Presentation Mastery is clearly a favourite generating over a quarter of the awards. The top three paths alone generated over half of the awards to date. Innovative Planning, Effective Coaching, and Dynamic Leadership are leadership focussed and their popularity is at striking odds to the popular [mis] perception “that nobody joins Toastmasters for leadership, they join for speaking”

Which clubs have registered the most Pathways Awards?

Table 1 Clubs that have registered three or more Pathways Awards

Club Pathways,
Awards, No.
Div H14 Huntingdonshire Speakers

9

Div E42 Heart of England Club

8

Div A23 Republic of Work Toastmasters Club

7

Div N51 A1 Speakers

5

Div S43 Aberdeen Toastmasters Club

5

Div N31 Warrington Toastmasters

4

Div H44 Bedford Speakers

4

Div D8 Clonmel Toastmasters

4

Div A3 Blarney Club

4

Div N15 Leeds City Toastmasters

4

Div G1 Ipswich Electrifiers Speakers’ Club

4

Div S33 Linlithgow Speakers Club

4

Div H32 West Herts Speakers Club

4

Div N48 Manchester Orators Toastmasters Club

3

Div N15 Strictly Speaking Harrogate

3

Div G1 Camulodunum Club

3

Div E6 East Midlands Speakers

3

Div C19 Dundalk Toastmasters Club

3

Div J2 Accentuators

3

Div D28 Maynooth Toastmasters

3

Div M26 Clondalkin Toastmasters

3

Div F12 Loughrea Toastmasters Club

3

Div S43 Inverness Toastmonsters

3

Div H20 Hertfordshire Speakers Club

3

Div G41 Cambridge City Communicators

3

Congratulations to all those involved.

Pathways level 1 and onward

Julie Kenny ACS ALB VPPR Ipswich Electrifiers

I’d been hearing about Pathways (then Revitalised Education Program) since my first district council meeting so by the time it came along I was keen to get my nose into it. I didn’t know what I’d think of it, but my curiosity meant that I just wanted to know as much as I could. Unlike a lot of members, the technical side didn’t worry me, I’ve spent many years with computer systems, using and developing, and I took my usual approach; I would defeat and master it by clicking everything and seeing what happened, if all else failed I would find and read the instructions. Overall that approach has worked with the Pathways Basecamp, but I have resorted to reading instructions and learnt that a there’s a few things I shouldn’t have clicked – beware, you cannot re-do an assessment.

The questions I really wanted answers to were about the projects. What would I be asked to do, were these things I wanted to do or could benefit from, and as a long-standing Toastmaster and committee member could I understand what the intention was behind these projects and the benefit to members and clubs; essentially, I tried to reverse engineer the program.

The first hurdle was choosing a path. The assessment gave me a list of choices which I found near impossible to prioritise, so I turned to the wealth of information others were sharing about the paths, primarily the Pathways catalogue. I went through the paths and projects to understand what was involved in each, picking up on things I really wanted to do and others I wanted to avoid. One colour coded spreadsheet later I had chosen Leadership Development; it has opportunities to organise small and larger events which I enjoy enough to want to be better at. What struck me most however is that although there is a lot of leadership in the paths there isn’t really a path that isn’t about speaking. Yes, you may work on a project to develop leadership skills but very few of those aren’t completed by giving an evaluated speech. I don’t think everyone has grasped that yet

Once chosen I wanted to get moving on my ice-breaker, mostly so that I could get to know the system by completing a project. I’m on my third CC so it’s not my first ice-breaker but it coincided with a fantastic opportunity; the Safe Haven team were asking for speeches at the pre-conference Anglo-Irish meeting and I got accepted. My ice-breaker was then my story so far, told to a group of Toastmasters but outside my comfort zone. Some of these I’d seen speak before and I was in huge awe of. I think it went OK, but I’ll admit I was very nervous.

Regards the project itself, the information and videos were good with tips on preparing, basic structure, timing and handling nerves. New members often put too much into their speech and overrun so I could see how this project helps, particularly when using the speech preparation worksheets. The challenge to me was not to rush ahead through the project screens, it does take you step by step with great hints and it’s easy to miss something. As an experienced member it’s good to know how newer members are being supported too.

The second project in level 1 is evaluation. I think this is the game changer for clubs in a good way. Essentially you give a speech and then repeat it or a version of it, before evaluating another Toastmaster. Possibly every club has seen members who either have no interest in their evaluations, argue with the evaluator during the evaluation itself and either won’t evaluate others or have bad habits when they do. The evaluation project outlines good practice and courtesy and asks for the member to actively listen to and use their evaluation. I was planning to speak about our club at a networking event, so the core of that presentation was my speech for this project. My improvement points made me realise that I tend to speak more ‘to my audience’ than ‘with my audience’. So, on the second version I reworked it with more questions and better opening. It was better the second time around and since then well received at the networking event. The final step where you do an evaluation and get feedback was insightful and more specific than the feedback I’d received for my CL.

Every path’s level one completes with a research project. Digging into the detail on this it’s also about speech structures. The challenge for me was not only to research but to keep track of that research and credit accordingly. The growth of the internet has made it easier and easier to plagiarize speeches and I suspect the question of originality is being raised more and more often so I’m glad to see this tackled head on. My speech was centred on Mary Lee Berners-Lee (an early computer coder and mother of Sir Tim Berners-Lee), I found the research hugely addictive and it will be a theme I return to. Keeping to time and getting the credits referenced I found challenging but I managed to do so. On reflection this project is also likely to help those who struggle for topics, once you explore something you have a passing interest in it’s easy to end up with ideas for more speeches than you planned.

So, level 1 completed, Fiona Watt our VPE is very good at approving and submitting awards so I’m looking at level 2. For leadership development my next project is Managing Time. In the CL this skill seemed to be more closely related to clock watching in a meeting. But I find my challenge is to track all the time it takes me to write and practise my next speech – a daunting prospect because I know I’m rarely honest with myself about that. Frankly it can only be a good thing.

 

Pathways Benefits – a user summary

By John Kendall DTM DL5

The District now has five members who have completed full paths and several others who are at a very advanced stage. I conducted a survey on a self-selected group of experienced Pathways users who are active on Facebook. The question posed was “What do you regard as the most important benefits that Pathways brings us?”

I have added the sub headings, edited whilst keeping the essence of the quotes.

Choice

  • The flexibility to choose specialization right at the start of your journey.
  • Members can choose printed or online materials and use what works best for them.
  • There is a wealth of materials and videos which I love.
  • To expand your mind! Learning how to plan your speeches with greater meaning and connectivity with your audiences.
  • Pathways provides a framework for a successful educational journey.
  • Opportunities to broaden communication styles e.g. blog and podcast. In line with social media.
  • There are choices aplenty, like fish in the Ocean. If you want to catch it, it is yours to do so, refrain and you will not get it.
  • Pathways is a treasure house rich with enormous wisdom. You have a lot of freedom you can enhance your talents.

Support

  • So much support material for every project! For example, the elective project “vocal variety,” provides much help on exactly what vocal variety is, how to implement it, how to practise it, and an example video! I LOVED it! And this has been true for every project I’ve done!
  • You can, like me at 82, be walked through the process, very patiently (from TI phone call), and I have had zero problems with it since.
  • Excellent learning resources e.g. videos, assessments, etc. 

Design

  • Pathways is so practical with lots of examples and materials.
  • Adult modern learning, more practical and deep projects, experiential learning and reflecting our club meetings as were there 100 years already.
  • Pathways it is not restrictive, so you can go farther. Once we understand the ropes, personalise each path and even each project, get used to reflect, improve, we get a real adult blended learning.
  • For me on every project I find something to utilise in my everyday life and this helps me to not only grow as an individual but to see a growth in my business too!
  • As relatively new, the videos help me understand certain concepts and the before and after quizzes are awesome. They push me to check my progress.
  • Good for those that learn best using videos. Others it doesn’t suit can download the projects.
  • I like the levels with increasing challenges as you progress.
  • Each path & mentoring underscore theory with practice through short (1 month), medium (3 months) and long projects (6 months).

Potential for Change

  • You can provide that feedback when you complete the project.
  • I agree with the evaluations that we can enter after the completion of each project. Doing it will help towards the programme being updated & changed in the future
  • Some projects are very well done and provide great examples already. I have faith that others will be improved.
  • It should be easy to expand and enhance the entire programme as we move forward.
  • It will benefit from pruning some new & under used aspects.
  • It should be easy & efficient to update & distribute changes with electronic publishing. For instance, the videos obviate the need for huge quantities of written material
  • Demonstrated with the new 11th path in February on Humour & with its new projects.

Evaluations

  • Give and receive more effective evaluations (express feedback in both words and numbers)
  • In pathways you learn to evaluate early on and self-evaluate all the way through & be evaluated by others.
  • The before and after quizzes have meaning once you get to new material.

Mentoring

  • A thorough introduction to mentoring in increasing sized projects.
  • Really understanding pathways and mentoring will mould real leaders.

Other Comments

  • Paperless should be a big help when we get there.
  • The ability to complete more than two speeches per manual outside of a Toastmasters meeting. Good for those that learn best using videos. Others it doesn’t suit can download the projects. (Important to some)
  • Having the ability to choose additional options.
  • I needed a new experience. Pathways has inspired and challenged me to rejuvenate my journey.
    Pathways gave new incentive and passion to me. Top of Form
  • Pathways integrates Communication and leadership skills like the real world.
  • Saving evaluations online to refer to at a future point of time – if you scan & load paper versions.

Individual Benefit

  • Breaking through those barriers and ‘doing it my way’. I set out with a plan in mind for my second and third Paths, once I had learned the ropes in Path number 1.
  • I could choose my goals, then select the relevant themes for the required projects, then choose my preferred electives to enable me to reach those goals.
  • Now that I have mastered skills in being a communicator, leader and mentor I now have a clear outline of how to help others in their journey.
  • As a self-directed learner and Pathways Guide, I learned quickly the navigational how-to in Base Camp and am now preparing a Learner Guide for those who are new to the system.

Suggestions

  • I believe vocal variety is so useful, it should be much closer to the front of the learning curve.
  • Some of our retired members, myself included are moving right along in Pathways. We oldies are perfectly capable of learning the technology.
  • However, we may need to help the less capable
  • I am dedicated to helping members get used to the navigation in Pathways, so they then focus on improving their speaking and leadership skills.

Value

  • You could choose one path and do all the electives giving you access to lots of extra projects at no cost.

The New Engaging Humor Path

Toastmasters International launched Engaging Humor, the 11th path in the Pathways learning experience, helping members develop their funny bone to entertain an audience.

This path is designed to help you build your skills as a humorous and engaging public speaker. The projects on this path focus on understanding your sense of humor and how that sense of humor translates to engaging audience members. The projects contribute to developing an understanding of how to effectively use humor in a speech, including challenging situations and impromptu speeches. This path culminates in an extended humorous speech that will allow you to apply what you learned.

Engaging Humor is only offered online and is available to all members. Its projects, which include titles such as “Know Your Sense of Humor” and “The Power of Humor in an Impromptu Speech,” offer strategies on writing humorous speeches, using effective timing and pacing, crafting strong openings and even how to cope when your jokes bomb. (Tips: Don’t sulk, don’t be irritated with the audience, and take time later to analyze why some bits worked and some didn’t.)

As with the other 10 paths in the program, you advance through five levels that increase in complexity. The projects include interactive activities and videos, which feature insights from experts such as Darren LaCroix, Toastmasters’ 2002 World Champion of Public Speaking and longtime stand-up comedian Judy Carter, author of The Comedy Bible.

The humor path draws on many of the same concepts highlighted in the Humorously Speaking manual in Toastmasters’ traditional education program. The importance of understanding and developing your own style of humor is a key aspect. So is wringing comedy out of personal stories and anecdotes that will resonate with your audience. Engaging Humor features a Story Collection tool in Base Camp that enables you to gather your own trove of funny stories.

Please share and promote this exciting news to the members of your district as well as your local media. For more information about Pathways, visit www.toastmasters.org/Pathways.

Additional Resources:

Easyspeak Pathways Progress Chart

By Daniel Sandars District 71 Public Relations Manager and Carole McCulloch

Those clubs (roughly half (55%) of the District) that use the meeting management system Easy Speak now have new tools to help manage Pathways

If you are an easy-Speak user, you can access the new Pathways Chart from the Club Charts option in This Club on the main menu.

Above is a screen capture (anonymised) of a Pathways Chart from my club where the VPE can see progress being made by all members through each of the five levels in a path, at a glance.

This new service makes it super easy to verify completions of actual speech deliveries in your club. The green ticks indicate speeches completed at club meetings, dark green for earlier events and lighter green for more recent events. Each green tick is clickable for tracking back to the actual meeting where that speech was completed. Note: you may need to visit the meeting agenda to see which Pathways project it refers to.

Each member’s enrolled Paths are shown as clickable links in the final column. Each one will display a complete list of speeches and projects completed for that Path, showing titles, dates and Evaluators. Here is a glimpse of one of mine! (Note: I can now mark this Workbook Complete.)

Easyspeak Pathways Chart

Pathways Pin badges

Path Pins in Silver and Level 5 Proficient Pins in Gold Now Instore (search shop on path name): https://www.toastmasters.org/shop

Pathways Schematic Chart

Only for the brave as this is a very busy chart, but invaluable for some members for strategic overview and planning.

This is a complete Schematic of Pathways educational programme following the addition of the Engaging Humor path.

With thanks to Masayo Arai D76 Pathways Guide, in collaboration with Aaron Leung from D89 and sometime D70 Pathways Advisor

For best results printing use A3 paper and check out the source below for updates

Source: https://musashiurawa.toastmastersclubs.org/pathways.html

Revised HACKING PATHWAYS for New Members – A guide to Basecamp

By John Kendall DTM

Pathways Learning Experience – has three score projects spread over eleven paths and five levels – accessed via an online system new to most people. Most people are happy with the projects & paths, but some want more options added. First new path added is Engaging Humour [See this issue for more on this path).

Start by logging in to www.toastmasters.org

  1. On your first log in enter your email address and choose the forgotten password option to set your password
  2. Log in & your name should appear at the top. (If you click on it, it shows your profile and settings)
  3. You now have access to extra things, such as the current issue of our magazine.
  4. Navigate (i.e. find your way) to pathways learning experience – the collection of Toastmaster Projects.

You read, LEARN/DO & then speak, be evaluated & compare your skill levels at the start & finish.

Step 1 you are to choose your path in 3 ways

  1. by answering a score of questions & trusting the algorithm
  2. read the names & descriptions
  3. by looking at the projects required at the highest levels & other research.

If you are less keen on using online learning until you know more, your Vice President of Education can send you the Navigator (the guide to all things toastmasters) as a PDF & first three projects as PDFs. You can then choose your path later, but it must be before you wish to go to Level 2. [PDF – Portable Document Format is a widely used electronic file that can either be printed or viewed on a computer or smart device]

Step 2. Do projects in a level?

Minimum – activate & launch project (expand to full size to see section menu at the bottom!)

  1. Self-score your current skill level & press submit
  2. Go to evaluation section & choose “print” to download a PDF. Leave Basecamp.
  3. Use PDF for source of learning (print if prefer), prepare Speech.
  4. Print the evaluation part of PDF, give speech, keep completed evaluation.
  5. Go to basecamp, relaunch project, go the last section self-score skills & press submit.

You will be invited to evaluate the project – this is not required & gets no reaction, but your feedback helps update our program.

Some projects have educational videos, calculators and resources to use online. The printable PDF version of the project will have their equivalent including answers to the questions.

Step 3. Complete a level

  1. Activate last (completion) project – this sends email to basecamp manager. Leave basecamp
  2. It can help to send your own email to the three basecamp managers (BCM) and ask them to complete the level. In it make explicit, if you wish, that you also want the club to register your completed level Award at Toastmasters International for your official records (in the Club Central portal).
  3. Wait. Remind BCMs, if you need to.

That is all. The rest is unnecessary. This is all you need to know.

You do not need to upload evaluations.

You do not have to give feedback (well you won’t get much from others)

Know how to find editable evaluation forms for others, but it is helpful.

Extra Information

Faster Access to pathways

I usually log in to Toastmasters.org

  1. click on “welcome John” name at the top.
  2. Those chose to go to pathways block & click on go to my transcript.
  3. Find the line with the pile of books Icon = levels & projects & has your pathname
  4. Click on the Curriculum on the Right-Hand Side, to access levels & projects

Home for Evaluation Forms

On the top of Left-Hand-Side (LHS) there is a menu button home.

It takes you to some images without function.

It has one useful button below on Right-Hand-Side (RHS) to take you to English evaluation forms in alphabetical order when you page down. In principle you should email a copy of evaluation form to your evaluator & print it for the meeting.

Also, at top of screen Right-Hand Side is a place to enter information about yourself.

Original Entry route

First blue rectangle is how you purchase a path.

Second is how you change club or switch to be BCM (irrelevant for most)

Note well the third blue rectangle – this navigator has interesting information on Toastmasters.

This is NOT the same as the navigator in Basecamp which is about basecamp.

Club Officer’s tips to Help Starters

Newcomers to toastmasters must learn lots of new stuff compared to just being handed a manual to read. They must learn to log on to TI, get to pathways, choose a path & learn about basecamp. It is unsurprising that many members fail to start quickly, especially as many new officers are completing traditional projects and don’t have a good feel for pathways yet. We need to make it easier.

One solution is to have a local expert – a pathways Champion
or Mentor, ideally who has reached level 3 at least… who can spend time with each new starter.

In the meantime, without a champion, another approach is:

  • Step 1. Give beginners a PDF of Navigator, Projects 1-3 in level 1 (all Paths are identical at this point) to peruse.
  • Step 2. Have a store at the club of all the evaluation forms at level 1.
  • Step 3. During their progress through level one gradually take them through the steps of logging on to Toastmasters.org, choosing a path, then finding their way in basecamp.

Then they will be able to stand alone ready to do Level 2 on their own.

Remind them to store their evaluations & feedback somewhere in a format convenient to them.

Explain to them that undertaking all roles – Ah-Counter, Timer, Grammarian, and Evaluators as well as being Toastmaster of the Meeting, gives them opportunities to learn to listen, speak to a live audience and practise leadership skills.

Explain to them that between speeches they are expected to undertake a role.

Tips for Basecamp Managers

If you receive an email from a colleague

  1. Log in & change mode to BCM.
  2. Look for requests to approve a level – & click to approve.

Validation – This can be a challenge as Basecamp doesn’t provide you with evidence so one way is to use your meeting system such as Easyspeak to track progress, but in the limit ask to see the member’s speech evaluations if in any doubt. [The Easyspeak team have used released a Pathways progress chart see subsection in this issue]

[Leadership Tip:

Many Officers may miss the Competent Leader (CL) manual as a means of motivating volunteers to take meeting roles and become contest chairs. It is true that Leadership projects arise differently in Pathways. However, the Competent Leader manual was never the decisive argument given how infrequently they were brought to meetings and worked from! Tanya Barad’s advice “I tell people not to look at the check box exercise but to look at the outside life skills, leading a competition, give them the opportunity to speak in a different capacity. Build experience for the club. Someone must do it or everyone in the club loses out. Why do us experienced people still do evaluations after the 100th time? Not for CL but to improve, to get a speaking opportunity and to support the members in the club“] Daniel Sandars

Feb ’19 Distinguished Clubs and Pathways incentives

February Update on Distinguished Club and Pathways Incentives

John Cox District 71 Program Quality Director


Distinguished Club Incentives

We are doing well.

As at the middle of February 56 of our clubs had achieved 5 DCP goals or better.

The following Clubs – that were not Distinguished last year – have already potentially achieved Distinguished or better status this year, providing they end the year with 20 + members or a net growth of 5 members.  $30 worth of TI shop items are up for grabs.  Many more clubs could join them. The results are changing daily so if you think your club should be on the list please let me know.

  • Div C16     IBM Blue Toastmasters
  • Div E39     Walsall Speakers
  • Div E42     Godiva Speakers
  • Div F12     Loughrea Toastmasters Club
  • Div N31     Chester Corporate Speakers
  • Div N48     Salford Speakers Toastmasters (President’s Distinguished)
  • Div N31     Castle Communicators (Select Distinguished)


Pathways Incentives

Pathways is also progressing well.

Several clubs below are well on their way to achieving four Pathways Level 1s and two Level 2s, or 4 CCs.  The first 30 clubs to achieve these goals will win $20 worth of Pathways ribbons.

Congratulations to Chester Corporate Speakers, Salford Speakers and Capital Communicators (CCs) who have already achieved 4 CC awards – their ribbons have been posted to them.

  • Div A3        Blarney Club                        4 Level 1s
  • Div A11      West Cork                              3 CCs
  • Div A23      Republic of Works TM Club   6 Level 1s
  • Div A49      VMWARE Toastmasters        3 CCs
  • Div D8        Clonmel Toastmasters           4 Level 1s
  • Div E39      Shropshire Speakers              3 CCs
  • Div E42      Godiva Speakers                    3 CCs
  • Div H32      West Herts Speakers             4 Level 1s
  • Div H44      North Bucks Speakers           3 CCs
  • Div J2         Dublin Club                            3 CCs
  • Div J2         Accentuators                          3 CCs
  • Div N31      Chester Corporate Speakers 4 CCs
  • Div N48     Manchester Orators TM Club 3 CCs
  • Div N48     Salford Speakers TM             4 CCs
  • Div N51      A1 Speakers                             4 Level 1s
  • Div S30      Capital Communicators          4 CCs

Please keep pursuing those education awards and getting the recognition you deserve.

Well done to all.  Keep up the great work.

Club Leadership: Pathways Schematic Chart

This is a complete Schematic of Pathways educational programme following the addition of the Engaging Humor path.

Beware it is an overwhelmingly busy chart! Some more experienced members may find it useful to get a strategic oversight of the entire Pathways programme.

With thanks to Masayo Arai D76 Pathways Guide, in collaboration with Aaron Leung from D89 and also D70 Pathways Advisor

For best results printing use A3 paper and check out the source below for updates

Source: https://musashiurawa.toastmastersclubs.org/pathways.html

Stepping into a Leadership Role – Why not you?

By Elizabeth Nostedt, DTM; Region 10 Advisor, Past Region 11 Advisor, and Past District 59 Director

Within a brief time (if it hasn’t already happened by the time this goes to print), your District team will be asking YOU if you would like to step forward and take a leadership role at the District level – as an Area Director, Division Director or higher. You may have many different thoughts about this – like:

  • Am I ready for this?
  • Do I really want to do this?
  • I have so many other things happening now.
  • What do I have to do in this role X?
  • and so on.

Leadership roles are not obvious to all of us, but they can certainly help us grow as people. Let me tell you a few leadership stories from my career in Toastmasters and in a corporate setting.

As Area Director (AD) – this is the true test of serving others.

As Area Director, people may look up to you as the person that should know everything. But that is not necessary – because there are so many resources in Toastmasters to help you – like the District Leader manual. This is exactly what I learned – I did not have to be an expert. I knew how to read – and I learned to ask good questions. I could ask the person who was AD before me, and I could ask other District leaders. I could also say – “I don’t know the answers to that.” I further learned that when I conducted Club Officer Training and when I visited the clubs in Area – I learned so much about people. I learned about their wants and needs and dreams for being a leader. I learned that I was the servant leader to them.

I set the vision for the Area for the year. I believed that our clubs could be Presidents Distinguished and through the training sessions, we reviewed how to do it with the club leaders. They caught the vision and understood it. We achieved it.

As soon as that Leadership Vision was clear, then it was my role to help them implement it. It included further interpretation of what each goal meant and what actions were necessary.

The biggest learnings came from working with others as volunteers. Of course, all the club officers are volunteers! And as AD, we are volunteers. So, it is not like at work where we work with employees, that they are expected to do the work because they are employees and get paid to work. It meant that I reflected on if I needed help with something, how could I best ask for help, and would this appeal to the person I asked, so that they would help.

As CGD, PQD and District Director

These roles further expanded my learnings as a leader, because there were more committees and more work to be done THROUGH others. A vision, an inspirational idea, enthusiasm for the work, willingness to do the work myself – these were all ways to work through others to achieve our goals. I learned to coach others with great open-ended questions so that they often found the answers they were seeking.

Was it all easy? Definitely not! I can certainly say there were challenges – but they also meant large leadership/personal learning lessons. There were people who could not get along with each other, an area director who did not want to build a new club – because he/she knew better, keeping District conferences within budget, and so on – each challenge came with a new lesson to be learned.

Servant leaders are motivated by caring and the agenda they seek is mutual benefit.” -Stephen M.R. Covey

When working in a corporate setting

I have worked for many years in various corporate settings – from being an “ordinary” employee, to being a department manager and leader of a large group and to my current position as a Senior Project Manager on IT and Business projects. Each of these roles of leadership meant something new.

As an “ordinary” employee, I was the leader of my own work. I learned time management of my own time. Some of you may think that it is tough when a manager is telling you what to do, but what if you yourself are the slave driver!! This is comparable to you as an ordinary Toastmasters member who also must take responsibility and needs encouragement to reach the next level of growth and awards.

As a Department manager, then I saw the people who were motivated by what they were doing, and those who were not motivated. As I see it now, all motivation is “self-motivation” and it was my work to ensure that we could find the things that would keep all the employees motivated in some way. This is perhaps like you as an Area Director, where you can see the clubs that are motivated to reach DCP and others that simply do not care.

As a Senior Project Manager now, I am caught between what my Management Team wants me to deliver, and what my team members say they can deliver. That is another dilemma. This is perhaps like the Division Director role – caught between the Area director and the District Leadership Team.

In each role at work, and in each level at Toastmasters, I take the time to reflect what lessons I have learned, and there are so many. They have made me a better person and a better leader – and they were so worth doing because of how much I have grown.

Diverse Community Outreach case studies

Diverse Community Outreach Activities

Outreach is an activity of providing services to any populations who might not otherwise have access to those services. A key component of outreach is that the groups providing it are not stationary, but mobile; in other words they are meeting those in need of outreach services at the locations where those in need are. In addition to delivering services, outreach has an educational role, raising the awareness of existing services

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Outreach

Community outreach extends beyond the Youth Leadership Program and Speechcraft. This is an embryonic section at present, but so far includes:

  1. Sam organizing two training days for the public based on the Better Speaker and Leadership Excellence series of educational speeches,
  2. Daniel describing how Area H44 have worked with redundancy re skill charity Careers Action to lay on educational demonstration meetings and a workshop, and
  3. Pat describes how Speakeasy Toastmasters Club (Mallow) spearheads an annual schools speaking competition.
  4. Unipart Rail threw down the challenge of organizing a Toastmasters Taster Session and Andy tells us how Doncaster Speakers took it up.
  5. Hertfordshire Speakers’ Elizabeth Jordan describes how Toastmasters’ members teamed up to help deliver a recent Rotary Youth Speaks Competition.

Read More

Speechcraft case studies

Speechcraft

Speechcraft

If you are an experienced member, Speechcraft is a great opportunity for you to present the fundamentals of public speaking to non-members. It can be offered as an integral part of your club meeting or as a seminar-style program presented outside of your club. The content can be delivered in four, six or eight sessions.

https://www.toastmasters.org/education/speechcraft

In this section we have assembled a diverse range of examples of Speechcraft programs from District 71 and even drawn in an example from New Zealand! The hard won experience behind these case studies will be invaluable to those planning Speechcraft and very fascinating reading for us all. We have so far:

  • Patricia describes the program at Dundalk Institute of Technology (DKIT) and provides a clear guide for the mechanics of the course and her passion for it
  • Danny uses experience from Leicester Leaders to provide much of the strategic thinking needed for planning Speechcraft
  • Sandra reports from the ‘coal face’ as her Speechcraft within the company of Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals Ireland completes to rave reviews from the participants. They were left wanting more!
  • Pat and Teresa describe the Speechcraft in Clondalkin Toastmasters that used an innovative WhatsApp group to keep participants in the loop and engaged – many remained members and two did very well in the contests.
  • Billy describes the Speechcraft inspired Boot Camps he organized to help coach Plain Speakers back to health by opportunistically utilizing the very scarce manpower and financial resources. Three participants became members going on to become committee members.
  • Daniel, Sultan and Luc describe how Cambridge Speakers opened the door to Cambridge University with a Speechcraft for six masters law students which lead to a further inquiry which lead to the application to organized a new corporate club
  • Bob reflects strategically on Speechcraft Camulodunum Speakers run with the University of Essex Public Speaking Society revealing the mechanisms, constraints and opportunities of Toastmastering within Academia.
  • Daniel, Alistair, and Mike  provide a very insightful description of the innovative New Zealand concept of community based Speechcraft Clubs to be found in most major population centres

Read More

Special Educational Section: Club Coaching

Educational Section: Club Coaching

The Club Coaching program doesn’t often receive a lot of publicity, yet it is important. Therefore we have invited experienced Club coaches to contribute to this section. Gerard Mannix opens the section with his experience and a description of how Club Coaching works followed by Daniel Sandars who describes District 71’s Club Coaching program over the last year. We than have three Club Coaches, Brenda Lannon, Joey O’Leary, and Phillip O’Brien, describe their hands on experiences. Finally Patricia Loughnane provides an excellent summary with her tips on successful Club Coaching

A CLUB COACH

By GERARD MANNIX DTM-CLUB GROWTH DIRECTOR

MY EXPERIENCE: As the saying goes, the only way to feel the water temperature is to get the toes wet-I had a Club Coach experience two years ago. I undertook this without any training just an intuitive sense of what was required. The result was successful, and the club was distinguished. Initially, I was ‘solo’ meeting with the club officers. I felt it was a ‘them and me’ situation resulting in a mediocre communication. I requested the Club Growth Director to appoint a second coach. This accomplished, it made an incredible difference. We were thereafter working as a cohesive group. Whether it was my own inadequacies, a gender balance with the second coach on board or the unique environment of the club, the rest is history, but I do feel the presence of two coaches has a definite benefit.

Club Coach Programme Regulations:

  • A club coach may only be assigned by the district director or the club growth director.
  • A club must have at least one but not more than 12 members when a coach is appointed, and the coach cannot be a member of that club until their appointment request has been processed.
  • Up to two coaches may be appointed to a club. The appointment lasts to June 30 of the current programme year if the club becomes Distinguished or better.

A Club Coach’s task:

  1. Build a rapport with club leaders and members
  2. Observe and analyse the club environment, facilitate discussion keeping it positive, honest and objective, then assist the club in generating solutions
  3. Help the club develop a plan with goals for improvement
  4. Enable the club to achieve goals
  5. Instil enthusiasm, fidelity, and a sense of responsibility for the club’s future
  6. Actively participate in the club and set a good example
  7. Emphasize that only through teamwork will the club be restored
  8. Review day, time and location of meeting
  9. Keep the area director, club growth director and district director informed of the progress
  10. Encourage the club to conduct ‘Moments of Truth’
  11. Recognise achievements
  12. Benefits for a Club Coach:
  13. Develop team-building skills
  14. Expand leadership skills
  15. Develop diplomacy skills
  16. Share expertise

Club Coach Recognition:

  • Each club coach receives a pin upon assignment
  • After successfully completing the assignment, each club coach receives a certificate and credit towards the Advanced Leader Silver Award
  • District publicly acknowledges appointments and successes

References

Club coach FAQ

Club coach troubleshooting guide

[Region 10 Advisor Elizabeth Nostedt has published slides from her recent webinar “How to get clubs over 20 members – Club Coaches” http://bit.ly/2C3NMRA]

Conclusion:

Some people wonder why we would bother saving a club. Why not just let it close? Saving clubs is necessary for the health of the district. We need clubs for the district to be in good standing, just as clubs also need members to be in good standing. Without clubs, the TM organisation, an International organisation, would fade away. We need to remember that members are the backbone of the Toastmasters experience and we need to retain clubs to retain members. We cannot have one without the other. And finally, we lose a part of history with each club we lose and as it is my role, I take it seriously.

GOOD WISHES TO ALL CLUB COACHES AND THANK YOU FOR YOUR LABOURS


The Club Coaching Program in District 71 – An Overview

Daniel Sandars DTM, Public Relations Manager

Last year 13 Toastmasters helped eight clubs return to Distinguished status and were awarded their club coach leadership achievements at the end of the recent Toastmaster’s year.

Thus, attaining one of three requirements for an Advanced Leaders Silver award. Their length of a

ppointments has ranged from 89 days to 601 days with an average of 421 days. Some of the length of service is down to Coaches choosing to extend their terms as an insurance measure for the Club

What is Distinguished status for a club? All clubs are set ten management goals within the Distinguished Clubs Program (DCP). The first six goals relate to the educational awards earned by the club’s members, the next two goals relate to the number of new members during the year, the ninth goal is based on officers attending training twice a year and the final goal is for administration by submitting the club officer list and at least one set of renewals on time. A club earning five or more goals is said to be Distinguished with the higher accolade of Select Distinguished for seven or eight goals and President’s Distinguished for nine or ten goals. However, to qualify a club needs to have 20 or more members or a net growth of five members at the end of the year of 30th of June.

It is possible to have a closer look at the DCP performance of the Clubs that have been coached thanks to Toastmaster Mike Raffety who has published various statistical tools and reports. For DCP history see http://bit.ly/2N8dUN5 . I’ve run the report for the eight clubs that were coached last year (see below). It is worth noting that paid membership counts are for the 30th of June (American syntax ‘6/30’) and may hide horror stories for the September and March renewals which are when the appointment of a Club Coach was triggered.

DCP History: 772301 – Bantry (D71 area A11)


DCP History: 3525 – Mid-Ulster (D71 area F4)

Data as of Tue Sep 25 10:10:16 2018
   

DCP History: 2730842 – IFSC (D71 area J57)

Data as of Tue Sep 25 10:10:16 2018
   

DCP History: 3941402 – Kiltegan (D71 area D40)

Data as of Tue Sep 25 10:10:16 2018
   

DCP History: 4044008 – Voicematters – Vodafone (D71 area M54)

Data as of Tue Sep 25 10:10:16 2018
   

DCP History: 2333 – Cork East (D71 area A3)

Data as of Tue Sep 25 10:10:16 2018
   

DCP History: 827840 – West Limerick (D71 area B36)

Data as of Tue Sep 25 10:10:16 2018
   

DCP History: 866008 – Athy (D71 area D28)

Data as of Tue Sep 25 10:10:16 2018
   

In four of the clubs, Bantry, Mid-Ulster, IFSC, and Kiltegan it is clear they have been struggling for a protracted period, which in the case of Bantry stretches back eight years. The impact of the Club Coaching is equally clear with a net growth of five new members between 16-17 and 17-18, but also a decisive increase in the number of DCP goals obtained -almost double what was previously obtained

The picture is less clear for the final four clubs because the detail is hidden by annual summaries. Fortunately, another Toastmaster statistician George Marshall publishes tools that allow a Club’s DCP history to be followed month by month – see TMTools http://bit.ly/2Oi9nwe. In the case of West Limerick in October 2016 membership slumped from 21 to 8, spending five months below 12 members. October 2016 also saw Athy drop from 20 to 11 members for three months, Cork East from 20 members to 9 then remaining below 12 for four months. For Voicematters – Vodafone it was October 17 when membership fell from 24 to 9 and remained below 12 for six months.

Currently, the district has nine clubs being helped by ten Toastmasters. Two of whom are helping two clubs! Currently, prior to September 2018 renewals there are 12 eligible clubs without a Coach with memberships ranging from 2-12 with an average of 8 members. Including the clubs that do have Coaches they account one in ten (10.1%) of the District’s clubs

In summary, Club Coaching can help mount a big turn around and many Club coaches go on to give back more than just the minimum. Where we have opportunity for improvement is in the timeliness of brokerage and matchmaking that might see clubs reaching out sooner for help to be paired up with Coaches coming forward more numerously.


Coaching Corporate to Community Club IFSC Toastmasters

By Brenda Lannon ACB ALS, District 71 Administration Manager

My name is Brenda Lannon and I’m a member of Toastmasters since September 2010. I have achieved my ACB and ALS. I have also served on many club committees as well as serving at District level as Area and Division Director. I am currently the Administration Manager for the District.

I was asked to be a club coach for Citibank Toastmasters in June 2017. This club was a corporate club that had ceased to be a corporate club. A decision was made to reform the club as a community club. I saw the role of club coach as an opportunity to develop and build on my leadership skills, my team working skills and to help grow the club into a strong, vibrant club. I wanted to pass on some of the skills and experiences I had gained in my 7 years as a Toastmaster.

There was a strong committee who were enthusiastic Toastmasters, all were current or past District leaders and were very willing to work together as a team to grow the club.

A plan was put in place at the start of the year to:

  • Rename the club IFSC toastmasters – this better reflected the locality in which the meetings took place.
  • Regularise club meetings (plan dates and venue for meetings.)
  • Ensure quality meetings were held.
  • Ensure that new members to the club were given speaking opportunities and were encouraged to commence the educational programs and take on meeting roles.
  • Encourage experienced toastmasters to come to the meetings to take on roles during the meetings.

The club was renamed IFSC Toastmasters and we used social media (Facebook page and meetup) to promote meetings.

The club was previously a Corporate Club and was therefore without a venue when the club ceased as a corporate club. Initially, meetings were held between two venues – a room on a college campus which was free from a cost point of view, but the college was unable to guarantee the same room for each meeting. The second possible venue was a meeting room in a nearby hotel with the associated costs. This created instability and uncertainty and made it more difficult to attract new members.

No definite meeting day – the club initially had no definite meeting day. The meetings varied from being held every two weeks to every three weeks. There was no certainty. The venue and dates were fixed for a room in a nearby hotel and definite dates were set for meetings. As the year progressed, there was an increase in guests coming to the meetings which brought an increase in membership. Excellent quality meetings were held. Experienced toastmasters were asked to come to the meetings to assist with taking on roles at meetings. Guests were invited along and were warmly welcomed to the meetings, given opportunities to take on speaking roles and were given positive constructive evaluations.

In June 2018, the club membership had a net growth of 5 members and the club was awarded the Distinguished Club award. This was a very proud moment for me as club coach but also the hard-working members of the committee who never gave up and persisted in their efforts to re-establish and re-energize the club.

The club is still facing challenges but the commitment of the committee members and other toastmasters within the club will see the club progressing, building on its strong points and working towards minimising its weaknesses.

Being a club coach last year was a very rewarding experience and I would encourage any member to take on the role of club coach. It is an opportunity to give something back while developing leadership and communication skills at the same time.


Coaching Community Club Bantry (D71 area A11)

By Joey O’Leary, ACS, ALS

Joey was appointed Coach at Bantry in May 2017. As shown in the previous section Bantry finished outside of the Distinguished club programme for the previous eight years. Last year after a net growth of five new members Bantry returned as a distinguished club with five goals.

She describes her Coaching experience…

“Becoming a coach for a club can and has been rewarding. Being a coach has been an excellent way to give back to Toastmasters.

Ideally, Bantry should not have had to struggle on for so long alone. However, you may need to make changes to the club as Coach and club members may not be open to them. It was tough trying to get an open meeting as some members were quite happy to continue the way they were.

Some welcome you whilst others question you. Honestly you need to be either deaf or thick skinned. It is just as well that I am both. The most important thing as coach is to put the needs of the club first. The key was working with the members that wanted to see their club improve.

Whilst a coach I saw many of the skills we learnt in Toastmasters being used. Would I coach again? Yes!”


Coaching Community Club Kinsale & District (D71 area A11)

By Phillip O’Brien

My name is Phillip O’Brien and I joined Toastmasters in 2014. I attended a few meetings of the Bandon Club in west Cork as a guest and joined up. I’ve progressed relatively quickly to ACG, ALB. I had worked closely with the president of my home club last year as Vice President Education through identifying where members were at regarding educational goals and working with the Vice Presidents Public Relations and Membership to advertise and promote the club. Working together the club achieved 10 DCP points from not being distinguished at all the year before.

During my year as Area Director I learned more about the bigger picture of Toastmasters and because of all the many, varied and wonderful experiences I’d had as a Toastmaster I felt that I would like to try and give back on a level outside of my own club. Kinsale Toastmasters, next door to Bandon, in 2017/2018, was a ‘struggling club’. As Area Director I wrote to the Club Growth Director for the District, John Cox and was appointed as Club Coach for Kinsale in April 2018. The biggest challenge is to use public relations tools effectively to attract new members.

DCP History: 1223085 – Kinsale & District (D71 area A11)

Data as of Fri Sep 28 10:10:17 2018
   

I think initially the reception I had was one of cautious curiosity. The members in the club are warm and welcoming but anything outside of the club or contest level wasn’t really seen as that relevant. However, I was welcomed in as the coach.

Some of the main issue to look at and work on from initial assessment were (a) to have the club in good standing for Area/Division contests (b) to encourage earlier payment of dues (c) to “get the easy things done” and (d) to explore how to attract new members.

My plan was to join the club and stand for election as Vice President of Education, so I could assist with the educational side of things and specially to support and promote Pathways as the club had very little introduction to Pathways. I also planned to work with the Committee to explore options for the meeting location which is somewhat out of the way in the town and not easy to find.

So far, the club has registered its officers, had 90%+ pay dues on time so is in good standing and has had five officers attend the first round of Club Officer Training. One education award has been registered so far. Several members have given speeches from Pathways.

The club will celebrate its tenth anniversary in May 2019 and we aim to be a Distinguished club by then. We should also have a member achieving her DTM.

So far, the journey has been exciting, challenging, it has allowed me to develop motivational skills and it has helped the club and members to engage more in what Toastmasters has to offer and has raised the profile of the club a little in the Division.

I look forward to continuing the journey while my term as coach lasts.


My tips for Coaching

By Patricia Loughnane DTM, Pathways Ambassador and Guide, Thurles Toastmasters President 2018-2019.

  • Contact the club beforehand to establish a rapport. Often Club Officers miss out on Training, so some procedures may need to be explained.
  • Meet with the Committee ASAP to discuss what they think is missing. Is it lack of organisation? Administration difficulties etc?
  • PR strategy-publicise club meetings. Look at Social Media presence-update.
  • Open Night or event that members of the public/target audience would be interested in.
  • Speech Craft in a local business or incorporated before a meeting with the participants given the option of staying to meet Club members and maybe even joining.

It may take the full 2 years to get the Club to acquire the DCP points, but it is worth it and the Club will have taken charge, revitalised itself with your help which is to your mutual advantage: Vibrant club and you get a goal on your Pathway to DTM.

Special Educational Section: “Is your club making the most of Pathways?”

Guest edited by John Kendall, DTM

Pathways Learning Experiences

by John Kendall, DTM

Or as I prefer to call it THE Toastmaster Education Program, offers three opportunities

  1. New members get a chance to learn speaking, communication and leadership skills.
  2. Existing members get a chance to focus on aspects of learning more tailored to their personal needs.
  3. Club officers get a way to achieve a higher Distinguished Club Program status for their clubs.

Herein (in the following subsections) are several contributions from D71 members who achieved a Pathways award in the year ending June 2018.

  • Avril Stringer at Linlithgow Speakers achieved Level 1.
  • Darren Walton started on his own at Huntingdonshire Speakers in March and reached Level 1.
  • Vinette Hoffman Jackson started in March after being a Pathways ambassador and reached Level 1.
  • Jenny Chalmers, John Kendall, Elizabeth Jordan, Steve Campion & Sudha Mani all joined overseas clubs with online access, prior to UK launch. This allowed the keener members to start their pathways journey earlier & some to gain higher level awards.

Now every district has full access to pathways locally.

Only John has used the printed manual option.

All these people (except Sudha) were ACG or DTMs.

Pathways – Learning by Doing

by Elizabeth Jordan, DTM (Hertfordshire Speakers Club)

Friday 15th December 2017 is a memorable date in my Toastmaster’s calendar. It is the date I delivered my first Pathways speech, the Icebreaker, entitled ‘TSP’. I delivered my speech to members of my online club, Emperor Mandarin Toastmasters club, a club that was recommended to me because they had embraced Pathways with great enthusiasm and it gave me an opportunity to get started on Pathways three months before the roll-out in Region 11 on 20th March 2018.

I chose to start on the Leadership Development (LD) Path because I wanted to work on a mix of communication and leadership projects, especially planning and implementing small and large projects.

Tip#1: When deciding which path to take I would suggest:

  1. Reviewing all the paths in the Pathways catalogue http://bit.ly/2LCv1a2
  2. Seeking out members who have completed the path you are interested in and learn about their experience 3) Take the Pathways assessment.

One benefit of Pathways is the availability of a rich mix of learning resources in the form of videos, quizzes and reading materials as well as support materials such as templates, evaluation forms etc. With no members in my club on Pathways, I learnt by self-study from the excellent on-line resources available, I attended on-line panel discussions of experts and I sought help from early adopters like Julie Kertesz, Sudha Mani, Zaldy Co and others.

Tip#2: Invest time to learn how to navigate Base Camp and visit the Tutorials and resources page where you can get help on every aspect of working in Pathways.


One of the things I enjoy about Pathways is that the Toastmasters fundamentals are the same: speaking before club members, receiving a verbal evaluation and continuing to do Table Topics and all the things we enjoy as Toastmasters.

Tip#3. Remember to print out the Evaluation form and take it along for your Evaluator to complete.

You can print off the forms from the Speech Evaluations tab or from the project.


When you complete a level, I would suggest printing out the certificate as a reward and an incentive to continue to the next level.

My final two tips are for the club Presidents:

Tip #4) Club President appoints a Pathways Champion in the club to answer questions and to encourage members who choose to transition to Pathways.

Tip #5) Add a 5-7 mins Pathways slot on agenda for the Pathways Champion or Ambassador. This will help to embed Pathways in the club culture and allow members and guests to ask questions.

Having completed L1-L4 of Leadership Development Path by June 2018, I was able to offer the awards to three clubs, all of which achieved President’s Distinguished status. I am now working on the final level – L5 – and plan to complete my first Path in Pathways by Q4 2018.

Experience with Pathways Printed Manuals

By John Kendall, DTM

I joined an overseas club DTM Masters in District 27 with online access to Pathways, to help me be an authentic ambassador and guide. I initially found the online system challenging so I paid extra for printed manuals in another path. Printed Manuals have their pros and cons:

Pros

  • you can see at once all the speeches in Level 1 and Level 2 when the manuals arrive,
  • all the material you can download even how to score quizzes is there,
  • you can plan,
  • You can show others the manuals to explain Pathways,
  • Your evaluations are written into your manuals at the meeting and can show VPEs,
  • It is most like the previous experience – just another manual,
  • It saves you from thinking about which electives to choose, and
  • You do not need a computer or be online.

Cons

  • it costs you more and you must wait for manuals to arrive,
  • you do not get online access to videos, calculators,
  • must wait 3 weeks after finishing Level 2 to get the next manuals (Level 3 and Mentoring),
  • must wait again for last batch of manuals Level 4 and 5 manuals,
  • The electives in Levels 3,4 and 5 are prechosen,
  • It is different and can be more work for VPE to update your progress in basecamp, and
  • you do not get online badges (no real loss).

In conclusion, If I do a third path I will choose an online one, now I know how to use the online system.

However, I as a lone Pathways learner without local support found the printed manuals particularly useful to get a real understanding of the program. Fewer than 1% of members have chosen printed manuals worldwide to date.

Visionary Communication

by Darren Walton, DTM

I expect most people filled the questionnaire in and got presented with a suggestion of paths to choose, as I did. So, I chose Visionary Communication and I have found it to be valuable.

The first three projects were relatively straightforward, thankfully – nothing more than had been seen on the older Toastmaster’s educational program, but the fourth was something else.

The fourth was entitled Understanding Your Leadership Style and I learned that we all use all the styles of leadership that there are, however we use some more than others. I gave a presentation about this and took the other club members, who were present, through the same journey of realisation.

There seems to be some work that needs to be done on the web site – there are some things that aren’t intuitive – for example, the pop-up window that opens needs resizing so the menu at the bottom is shown and that window could be scripted to open at the right size. There are plenty of other examples, but I won’t go on.

I have always been my own sponsor, set my own goals and motivated myself to achieve in Toastmasters and I have continued within Toastmasters because the meetings are very therapeutic for me. It doesn’t matter what sort of day I’ve had; the meetings press the reset button for me.

My advice for anyone is to set goals to get things done by and meet them, even if it means you didn’t do your best because you do catch up eventually. It takes courage to be meaningfully imperfect but there is a lesson in everything we choose to do, and everything we choose not to do. Get outside your comfort zone and fly but listen to yourself and learn!

Overall the Pathways program appears to be useful. I particularly like the way that it mixes leadership with communication and am looking forward to discovering more.

Pathways Interview

with Jenny Chalmers DTM

What helped you choose your path? The only differences are one project L3, L4, and L5

I did the quiz and liked the suggestion of Effective Coaching; I think I had decided on it before I did the quiz! I really knew truly little about what was on offer before I started!

It is only as I have found out more that I realise the choice is something of an illusion. I compared two paths and found that there were only three or four projects that are unique to a path, everything else can be taken in any path so I now see that it’s important to look at the unique features of a path.

I am taking more care in choosing my second path.

Who supported you?  No one in your home club has done it or achieved this award. Why do it? – you are DTM!

I joined a club in North America to join the program before Pathways rolled out here. Pathways was relatively new at the time and fellow club members, apart from those who had joined for the same reason, were not particularly helpful. I did it because I wanted a new challenge after my DTM and I wanted to become a Pathways Guide.

Any advice for others?

Take time to choose your path. Use all the resources available and really think about what you want to get out of it.

Any comments for other clubs, other officers, or new members?

Choose carefully and most importantly get started so that you get experience and can help others.

My Experience with Pathways as an Early Adopter

By Sudha Mani

The Pathways – A New Revitalised Educational Program was rolled out in our district on 20th March 2018. This is my story and experience.

I am basically inquisitive and love to know what is under the hood before anyone does and have always been an early adopter. Wishing to experience Pathways early a chain of contacts led me to Julie Kertez (Witty Storytellers Online) who introduced me to Zaldy Co who was VPE of an online attendance club in the Philippines where Pathways had rolled out. The club is Mandarin Toastmasters.

On 2nd Nov 2017, I called Zaldy and paid my dues and immediately started on the program and took the assessment. Luckily, I got the same paths I picked up before the assessment. As Julie had already shared her Pathways Paths Guide. I had marked which paths I would go for initially along with electives; they were 1. Innovative Planning 2. Persuasive Influence 3. Dynamic Leadership.

I looked at the paths and the required projects. Innovative planning had HPL (High-Performance Leadership) project. I knew it will be difficult because I didn’t know much about what are the projects which could be considered for HPL. I was Area Director and pursuing towards DTM with the then-current Educational program. So, I chose Dynamic Leadership. Oh boy, it was good. I loved elective projects from Level 3 onward. Some of them, I have done in the past as part of my work. I paid few thousands for some of the electives like “managing successful projects”, “Negotiation”, “creating a podcast” and couple more, and I see the same courses or projects, with the same content in Pathways for a fraction of the cost (included in membership fee). This reiterated that I am on the right path. I completed my first path Dynamic Leadership by the end of January 2018; 3 months since I started. First three levels of second path Innovative Planning by the end of February 2018. Then I got busy with Pathways Ambassador and Area Director roles.

Now let me tell you about six revelations after I completed a path and level 4 in the second path.

  1. The result from the assessment is just a guide. You don’t have to go with the result. In my case, I read the descriptions of all the paths, picked my first 3 and then took the assessment. I got the order wrong, but I got what I chose in the first place.
  2. When I chose my paths, the second thing I wondered was how am I going to do 2 icebreakers. So, I booked my Icebreaker for the first path. When the time came for me to do the second path, I had another incident I could speak about. Or you could speak about what you want to get out by doing that path. That’s what I did with my 3rd path.
  3. Selecting electives: You get to choose electives from level 3 of the paths. The projects in the elective list are almost the same for all the paths. Yes, you can repeat your electives. What I did was, I chose the electives before just like paths by reading the descriptions once electives become accessible after finishing the level 2. I changed my mind and did different ones because they were more appropriate for me then.
  4. After completing, 3 levels in a path I found out that preparation for Level 4 and 5 must be from the start of the path. You can use the icebreaker in each path be your “What do I want to achieve”; that way others can help you when you reach level 4 and 5.
  5. Level 4 and 5 projects, you can do outside Toastmaster’s remit. You can ask in your organisation whether you could attempt the project on a voluntary basis. This way you not only gain experience; you have more of a chance of getting that promotion or job switch.
  6. This is about choosing the path; after completing the first path… I started with innovative planning. What I didn’t realise was the HPL (High-Performance Leadership) project is a required project. This is the challenge. I wish I had planned this well.

Pathways Learning Experiences – Summary

By John Kendall, DTM

In 2017-2018 Pathways became a reality. Only a few of us had a chance to really benefit from it and only two clubs gained from it in DCP terms.

Take outs for Members

In general, existing experienced toastmasters e.g. with CC will find Pathways straightforward and will achieve Level 3 quickly. It is at Level 3 and above that the exciting new opportunities and challenges begin. People like the new evaluation style.

These are my key tips for members embarking on Pathways

  • Tip – Open Screen Windows to full size to see all the content more easily.
  • Tip – Always add post project self-ratings and submit them before completing the project
  • Tip – You can download and print the project file (PDF) under the section “evaluation”
  • TIP – Keep a copy of your evaluation safe for later. (no longer in your manual)
  • Tip – If you don’t understand something ask another.

Now there are plenty of real users around to provide help and advice. So now we can really make the most of it.

We can of course still use the traditional program alongside to complete our chosen awards until 30th June 2020- not least to gain CL and ALB

WARNING – pathways is seriously addictive. Once you have a level only three more speeches to get the next, so why not?

Take outs for Clubs

In Distinguished Club Program (DCP) terms – Cornerstone Communicators Advanced Toastmaster (CCAT) was the only club to achieve P1 (four different people with Level 1), P2 (two Level 2s) and P4 (two Level 3s). Hertfordshire and Cornerstone both achieved P5 (one Level 4)

Cornerstone Communicators has members with home clubs and doesn’t usually get CC awards (Goals one and two). The fact that Pathways offered alternative ways of earning education goals that enabled CCAT to achieve President Distinguished status for the first time.

Club officers in planning their DCP program for the coming year can look to new members, who have not joined yet, achieving one or two levels in the year. Whereas, 10 speeches took you to CC, in Pathways 10 speeches gets you to Level 3. Thus, inexperienced members of the club, starting Pathways, for the first time will now also be contributing to those goals within their first year.

However, in this new year there should be more members using Pathways, learning new things, getting awards more quickly and most clubs achieving DCP goals because of it. So, I see 2018/19 as a year for many more awards than last year thanks to Pathways and more clubs doing their best in terms of DCP status.


Bonus pathways content

Talk Show for Talkers Podcast

(supported by District 71)

Shows that are tagged #Pathways. Worth a listen generally, even if the Pathways content features in just part of the show.