Club Meeting on 14th July 2020

On 14 July 2020, we met again for the ninth time over the Internet. At this meeting, our theme was Bastille Day, (French National Celebrations) day. It seemed like we were getting used to meeting in this way with fewer hiccups every time. However, it still was clear that we were missing each other’s company and person-to-person meetings in our Community Centre room in West Pennant Hills.

Toast

During the first part of the meeting the French national celebrations day had been mentioned few times by our Sergeant At Arms Raj, our chairman Chris Tso, and toast Mel Colgar.

Table Topics

Table topics was prepared by John Inglis. For John we had to describe an imaginary picture. It was fun and thought provoking.

Prepared Speeches

In the second part, we had the prepared speeches. Our speakers were Shirley, Jonathan, and Johnny.

Shirley spoke about her role as a protégé and finding her experienced and ideal mentor. She told us this experience as a journey that took her from a conflict to a success story and ending up having a good friendship with a colleague.

Jonathan talked about something rather scientific. He told us the difference between acute pain and chronic pain. He explained, how acute pain can be useful for us to protect us from further injuries. On the other hand, the chronic pain can be so harmful may represent a pathology that we may need to overcome just like a software problem on a computer program.

Johnny’s speech was rather emotional. He told us about importance of forgiving and loving. His speech was touchy and captured the audience attention from the beginning to the end. He told us how he came out from an ordeal/disappointment of one of his friendship by blocking the hateful feelings and replacing them with appreciation, forgiveness, and love.

Conclusion

In short, as always it was a wonderful, fruitful, entertaining, and always helpful meeting. It made us grow and contributed to each of us’ personal skills. It related to the date, which was a Bastille Day, and carried on with wondrous speeches and evaluation.

Written by Mel Colgar and edited by Shirley Childs

Club Meeting on 30-Jun-2020

Tonight we had our eighth virtual meeting via Zoom with the theme being “End of Financial Year” which is on 30th June. This is an important time for the economy especially for businesses that report their annual results.

We had all been affected (or know someone affected) by the covid-19 lockdowns, bushfires and the drought.

We had an attendance of 14 people including four visitors – Jeff Walsh, Shane Vaz, Ben Burt Smit and Lee Buckley.

Executive Changeover

Lee Buckly made a Toast to the thank the outgoing Executive Committee members and to welcome the incoming Executive Committee members.

This lead onto Shirley Childs who formally inducted the new executive by confirming the responsibilities of each executive officer:

  • President – Christoper Tso, (prev. Clare Fraga), 
  • Vice President of Education (VPE) – Johnny Manolelis, (prev. Vicky Mina),
  • Vice President of Membership (VPM) – Clare Fraga, (prev. Johnny Manolelis),
  • Vice President Public Relations (VPPR) – Jonathan Lau (prev. Chris Tso),
  • Secretary – Mark Paton, (prev. Christoper Tso),
  • Treasurer – Andre van Woerkom, (prev. Helena Zhang)
  • Sergeant at Arms – Raj Wadnere, (prev. Mark Paton)

Table Topics

Shirley Childs used her many hats and was also the Table Topics Master and asked various people questions about their leadership style. Here were the questions:

  • What do you understand by servant leadership?
  • What is the most opinion attribute of a leader?
  • How would you promote Toastmasters?
  • Which leader do you admire most and why?
  • Do you agree that leaders are born?
  • What is your style of leadership?
  • What did you learn as a leader in Toastmasters?

Prepared Speeches

In the second half of the meeting, we had three prepared speeches by Mark, Molly and William. 

Mark Paton’s “The Value of Mentoring” was an opportunity for him to share with us the tips that his mentor shared with him in a mentor-protege connection. As Mark’s animated speech went on, we are informed about the importance of :

  • relaxing, or taking a breath.
  • ensuring that pause breaks are similar in length.
  • staying still to maintain focus.
  • sing purposeful gestures.

William’s Leong’s “A song with sweet memories,” shares his favorite song – “Loch Lomond”, which reminds him of his father. William used to sing together with his father. We could all relate to how music can bring nostalgic feelings of someone we have missed.

Molly Yang talked about “A new understanding of discrimination”. She explained the concept of discrimination and why it occurs. Molly used personal examples and the 2008 debt crisis to support her conclusion – Discrimination occurs as part of a competitive free market where risks and rewards determine personal choices. We should deal with the root causes of inequality rather than simply replacing it with “anti-discrimination” policies that interfere with the free market economy.

Conclusion 

This was a very informative meeting. We were reminded about the mutual benefits of mentoring for both the mentor and protege. We answered impromptu questions about leadership. We were reminded about the different responsibilities of a club executive officer. This meeting was another step towards becoming a better leader and communicator.

Co-authored by Christopher Tso