What is Toastmasters? | An Introduction to One of the Best Investments you can make in Yourself

by RJ

in Self Improvement

Recently, I told some friends that I was joining Toastmasters. I was a little shocked when they told me they never heard of such a club.

My naive self, assumed that everyone hear of Toastmasters.

The purpose of this post is to discuss what Toastmasters is and go over why I believe it’s one of the best investments you can make in yourself.

What is Toastmasters?

According to its website:

“Toastmasters International has grown to become a world leader in helping people become more competent and comfortable in front of an audience. The nonprofit organization now has nearly 260,000 members in over 12,500 clubs in 113countries, offering a proven – and enjoyable! – Way to practice and hone communication and leadership skills.

Most Toastmasters meetings are comprised of approximately 20 people who meet weekly for an hour or two. Participants practice and learn skills by filling a meeting role, ranging from giving a prepared speech or an impromptu one to serving as timer, evaluator or grammarian.

There is no instructor; instead, each speech and meeting is critiqued by a member in a positive manner, focusing on what was done right and what could be improved.”

Why You Should Join Toastmasters

I’m a big believer in the fundamentals of life. My theory is if I can read, write, and communicate well, there is very little I can’t do.

Toastmasters has a reputation of being a group for people to improve their public speaking. However, I see it as a lot more. I see Toastmasters as a way to enhance my communication skills.

Right now, I might find myself speaking in front of a crowd only a handful of times a year. However, not a day goes by where I don’t communicate one-on-one. The better I’m able communicate, the more value I can be to them. The more value I can be to others, the more value (I’m talking money here) will come back to me.

Top 4 Reasons I Joined Toastmasters

To get little more specific, here are some of the extrinsic benefits I hope to get out of my Toastmasters membership.

  1. Improve Public Speaking – As Gen Y Wealth’s popularity and my knowledge as a financial planner grows, I plan on a part of my income coming from public speaking.
  2. Expand Gen Y Wealth to YouTube – I have a few videos up on YouTube right now, but they are not the quality I’m looking for. As I get more experience speaking, I plan on using videos to market this site.
  3. Networking - The club I joined has a diverse group of around 25 people. There are entrepreneurs, professional speakers, CEO’s, people without jobs, people who are trying to overcome their shyness, and even one retired rocket scientist.
  4. Enhance Overall Communication Skills – See above…

How to Join Toastmasters

There are thousands of clubs all over the world. At the Toastmaster’s website, you can search by location to find a club nearby.

If you live in a big city, chances are you going to have your pick between multiple clubs. Don’t be afraid to attend multiple meetings before deciding which club to join.

The group I joined specifically stated on their website that all visitors were welcome. A reservation wasn’t needed to attend.

Investing in Yourself

The annual dues for Toastmaster’s are around $50 a year. I can’t think of a better returning investment.

In the age where information products are higher than $1,000, it’s refreshing to see an investment opportunity that anyone can afford.


Photo by: Kevin

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{ 1 comment }

NYGUYNo Gravatar November 19, 2010 at 10:14 am

I heard about this club a few months ago and searched one in my area. I sent an email asking for details, and was told when and where the clubs meets and was welcome to drop in without notice. I had the information but haven’t taken action on the invitation to attend. Part of me is intimidated and the other part seems myself as being busy with other things. I should really check it out.

I agree with you about it being a great investment into being comfortable with communication in all sorts of settings.

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