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Toastmasters' biggest problemEdit

Our biggest problem is not growth; it's not funds; it's not members, or clubs, or the DCP. Our biggest problem is succession.
Our greatest strength as an organization – the fact that we roll our leaders over every year – is also the one thing that holds us back the most.
What we need to do as an organization is set a Big Hairy Audacious Goal – one that we can execute over five years, not five months.
Human beings want a clear sense of direction. They buy into a clear goal.
This will help with succession planning because: 1. The successors know what's expected of them 2. People want to succeed. Nothing succeeds like success. 3. There's a clear idea of everybody's role and how it fits into the five and 10-year goal.


Big Hairy Audacious Goal: Five by 10, ten in ten.Edit

Five thousand members by 2010, and ten thousand members in ten years (by 2016). District 74
June 2006, we have around 2500 members. plus 15% growth By June 2007 we will have 2875 members.

+20% growth year on year

2008 = 3450

+20% growth year on year

2009 = 4140

+20% growth year on year

2010 = 4968

then 12% growth over five years gives 10,064 by June 2016

When you break it down like this, it seems do-able – even conservative. There's one year of modest growth – 15%. That's the year 2006/7. That's the year we gear up for three years of aggressive growth – 20% year on year for just three years.

Then we coast at 12% growth per year for five years, and voilà! Five by 10 and ten in ten.

If it's as simple as this, what's standing in our way?Edit

  • Money / funds
  • People / resources
  • Clear structures
  • Longer-term marketing plan.
  • Lack of self-confidence?

The answer is to tackle our limitations and remove them. Remove the limitations, and the plan executes itself.

Year Add Members Add Clubs Activity 2007 375 20 Budgeting and fund raising to pay for growth 2008 575 32 Focus on Corporate Clubs and ANC YL / DA YL 2009 690 38 Add a focus on Regional Hubs 2010 828 46 Add a focus on Schools.

We're strugging to break even. Where the hell will the numbers come from?Edit

These are the main sources of members

  • The public at large
  • Organisations
  • Civic society
  • Schools.
  • Previous members (who dropped out early).

Goal: An average of 7% of all employees should be a Toastmaster for at least six months and attain a C&L 3.

  • Target the big employers first: The four banks, then the cellphone companies and IT companies, as well as SAB, Coke and other large manufacturers.
  • Target the Political organizations – ANCYL, DA Youth League other NGOs and civic organizations, as well as Lions and Rotary.
  • By 2010, 20% of all matric students must have had exposure to Toasmasters.
  • By 2010, there must be at least one club for every university and technikon in the country.


How to double our membership in five yearsEdit

The growth has got to be as follow:Edit

  • Speechcraft → corporate club → open club
  • Industry bodies (Engineers, accountants, etc) → open club
  • Political bodies (ANCYL, Businesswomen of the Year) → open club
  • Gavel club → feeder into the local Toastmasters clubs (plus parents join other clubs).

Closed clubs die fast and take a huge amount of energy, so let's not go there.

If we're going to launch 125 clubs in the next five years, we've got to get very good at getting regional hubs going in the smaller centres: Polokwane, Nelspruit, Witbank, Bela Bela, Tzaneen etc. There should be four regional meetings a year: Amanzimtoti and Scottburgh and Margate and Southbroom get together for a joint meeting of some sort – a Sunshine Coast champion, for example. If Ladysmith or Tzaneen or Potch are a bit isolated, we need to paint the map between these towns with Toastmasters!

Our target market:Edit

  • Pre-baby singles
  • Pre-baby couples
  • Self-employed people or in corporate careers
  • People with grown-up children who are still active in the business world
  • Retired people

Our target market doesn't have kids between the ages of 0 and about 18.

Our competitionEdit

Anything else our target market can, and wants to join.

  • Wine clubs
  • Book clubs
  • Industry organisations


Marketing Toastmasters' Growth.Edit

  • Toastmasters 74 is the guardian of all public speaking in South Africa. If the standard is crap, it's because we're not doing our job properly.
  • Africa punches above its weight in public speaking. Witness two world-champion runners up in the last five years.
  • South Africa must produce a world champion public speaker by 2010. Will it be you?
  • Use Toastmasters at your organization to build relationships inside your organization. If you've got a Nedcor club in JNB and in CPT, use those links to build your network.
  • Give your career a boost by joining the TM club for your industry body.
  • TM must promote networking – both business and personal. Toastmasters is First for Networking.
  • Market the Speakers' bureau – by using a Toastmaster, you're helping us become world champions by 2010!
  • If you're visiting a town on business, go to the local Toastmasters club.
  • Do a deal with Holiday Inn countrywide to provide Toastmasters with meeting facilities.
  • There must be a Toastmasters meeting at least twice a month at every Holiday Inn in the country!
  • Give your speaking career a boost – we're looking for guest speakers!
  • A "Business Communicator of the Year" competition with the finals in October (for Minicon). If you want to win that, you'd better come to Maxicon to see the best of the best battle it out. (details to be discussed)

Additions to our productEdit

We need to build a whole layer on top of Toastmasters, so that Toastmasters supports a whole infrastructure.

  • Networking. We allow any Toastmaster to publicise their business among other Toastmasters
  • Some sort of dating – we design some events around meeting other like-minded people
  • Additional activities such as: Toastmasters who also own Land Rovers; Toastmasters who are also photographers, etc. A Toastmasters outing to the Picasso exhibition, for example.
  • Public evaluations. Are you a good communicator? Is your boss? Download this form and give him / her your feedback.
  • Podcasts and Newsletters on public speaking – how to do it best.

Next steps:Edit

  • Brainstorm this document.
  • Write a full project plan of "paint by numbers" with monthly targets for the next 60 months.
  • Hit the ground running.


TM 2006/7 Scorecard





  • Club rescue







What we will need to make this plan workEdit

Even 12% growth is pretty aggressive. It translates to about 280 members in another fifteen or sixteen clubs. It means we need to add one additional club for every seven clubs we have at the moment. So the logical thing to do is to create five-club clusters and task each cluster with creating one new club. Why five-club clusters? It allows for a 20-30% failure rate so that we still meet our objectives. Each cluster must identify five opportunities in

  • Corporations
  • Industries (the advertising industry needs some toastmasters clubs, for instance)
  • Schools (gavel clubs count)
  • Communities / Geographical gap

That needs a club.

They hand over these five opportunities to the marketing team. In five opportunities, the marketing team should be able to close at least one deal. The ideal is a speechcraft with the eventual aim of starting a club, or just a corporate club. The idea is that the corporate clubs are open clubs – closed clubs often peter out and die.


The five clubs arrange between them

  • A charter team
  • Audience members from the member clubs to put bums on seats and to act as evaluators.

We needEdit

  • A step-by-step club starter kit, complete with gavels, trophies, manuals, contest guidelines, invoice books, a video of an ideal club meeting, the works.
  • A pool of guest speakers so that new clubs always get exciting speakers.
  • A district trophy recognizing the cluster that has started the most clubs, as well as the most promising new club or some variation of that.

We also need:Edit

Marketing support. The next three years must see Toastmasters being marketed like it has never been marketed before.

  • Every HR director must be convinced that Toastmasters is the key to career planning
  • Every career body should be convinced that to get ahead, their members need Toastmasters
  • Every MBA student should know that Toastmasters is the key to getting ahead
  • Every school / university leaver should use Toastmasters as a networking tool.
  • Every self-employed person should use Toastmasters as a key to getting more business
  • Every conference should be have an evaluation form sponsored by Toastmasters with club information on the back so that the speakers get feedback.

A member register for networking purposesEdit


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