Author James Finnegan
It would take more than a mere fire alarm and building evacuation to stop Past International President Pat Johnson from delivering a Presentation.
We were delighted to welcome our dear friend and colleague to last Sundays District 71 Leadership Series to share her Toastmaster experiences all the way from a nervous first meeting, and greeted by the smiling, encouraging Joseph, to the highest levels of the organisation. These lessons of life long learning and leadership have held fast in her personal life and professional career especially in the Corporate world.
Pat has never forgotten where she came from, a small club in a rural town, nor those who helped support and encouraged her, asking herself if she could do the same for others. She strongly recommended we invite all guests to join on their first night.
She asked us to look for and encourage the “Shining Stars”, those who look like they might have leadership potential, as she was spotted by another PIP Eric Stuhlmueller. Pat deeply believes in Goal Setting,.regularly checking in with her “Why?”, which helps avoid distractions. She also suggested we do the Important Thing First. Stepping up and being uncomfortable is a great place to be for learning experiences.
She was unsuccessful in her first couple of elections for District Leadership roles, but realised that if she did not have confidence in herself, no one else would, She learnt to keep going, even if she had to detour on the road to her Goal.
She places great value on having an Accountability Partner to help get things done. She stressed the importance of being prepared and doing your homework. Her work in Conflict Resolution has been of great use in all aspects of her life, recommending we learn something specific and put it into practice. Start simple and build complexity, as she has done in many varied projects.
She sees a continuing need for Communication skills, especially in Education, Community and the Corporate World, and is a Champion of her Teams, building synergy. She also advised never do anything you would not like to read about in tomorrow’s paper.
As PQD Danny Banks pointed out in his Vote of Thanks, Pat’s speech and example could be summed up as:
Don’t Forget where you came from
Don’t forget your “Why?”
Find the “Shining Stars”