Excellent Educationals coming soon!

Posted by on Aug 7, 2017 in Meetings

Don’t miss the chance to improve your skills in Evaluation and Mentoring when two of our most experienced members provide educational speeches on these topics:

  • 28 July:  Effective Evaluation with Brett Snow
  • 4 August:  Mentoring Skills with Roydon Gibbs

Whether you are a mentor or a mentee (I’m not sure that’s a real word), Roydon will give good advice about how to get the best out of the relationship.

I am reading a book called “Thanks for the Feedback: The Science and Art of Receiving Feedback Well (Even when it’s Off-base, Unfair, Poorly-Delivered, & Frankly, You’re Not in the Mood)”. It’s a good book, but one that my fellow Boaters will never need to read after hearing Brett’s Effective Evaluation educational because all our feedback will be perspicacious, efficacious and superbly delivered.

Not to mention that there will be muffins on 4 August ….

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Meeting 881

Posted by on Aug 4, 2017 in Meetings

Vijay opened the meeting at 7am, his first time in this role, Sergeant of Arms. He grabbed the bull by the horns and wrestled his way through, achieving all the necessary requirements of the role then tossed the meeting over to the Toastmaster of the Day, Alan Calder.


Alan introduced the theme for the day as “Marathon” giving us amazing stats on people who had run the most marathons. One being 280 marathons run in one year by one person. Alan tied this theme to the fact that todays meeting was a “Speech Marathon” of 5 speeches instead of the usual 3 speeches for a typical meeting.


Speaker 1 Courtney Tibbotts, – Speech Titled “Castle Street to Crumpets”  This was Courtney’s first 5-7min speech at Toastmasters, we call it an icebreaker speech. She took us from her conception in Castle Street to her current position marketing Crumpets for the Button family business. The neat thing about Courtney’s presentation was she had crumpet packages for everyone at the end.


Speaker 2 Dion Ebraham – Speech Titled “Fate, Chance, Destiny” Dion also was giving an icebreaker speech. He told us of his origins in Zimbabwe, born in the year of independence. Dion had 2 memorable statements worth quoting. 1.  “In Zimbabwe you always had to have a plan B.”  2. “since marrying a kiwi girl he is now fully kiwi owned and operated” . He described throughout his talk how sports had been his Fate, his chance and his destiny now working for Canterbury Cricket.


Speaker 3 Natalie Perzylo – Speech Titled “What is Old?” Natalie challenged our preconceptions about being old, by explaining her experience, being entrusted with an “Old dog”  called Jack, with various aliments including cataracts. How she at first, she treated him with kid gloves, because he was considered old and frail. But then discovered, that he was fine with the other dogs, doing all the things the other dogs did. We were challenged to review our perception, that because people are old, that they can’t do stuff. In the middle of this she added stories of old people she had met that had defied expectations of what old people where capable of. Highly amazing stories.


Speaker 4 Danny De Hek – Speech Titled – “The truth about business networking” This 10min presentation can be viewed in full on Elite 6 Business Networking Facebook page. Danny gave us 5 tips about Networking that he has found by experience. This speech was followed by a question and answer time with questions from the audience.


Speaker 5 Brett Snow – Speech Titled – “There is no failure, only Feedback” This was a12-14min educational talk on how to be an effective speech evaluator. Brent gave us 4 secrets to making our evaluations more powerful in our public and our private life. His example How to respond to your spouse saying “how do I look?” This was the most interesting educational speech I have heard in toastmasters.


Great Evaluations were then given to all speakers by Mark Granville, Brent Ruru, Rodney Ford, Anton McMulkin and Helen McCloud. Time keeping report by Denise Ford.


“The Toastie Award” was split between our 2 icebreaker speeches, Courtney receiving the Toastie, and Dion being awarded a packet of Buttons Crumpets.


Next week we are looking forward to an amazing speech from Roydon Gibbs on how to be a good mentor. Come and join us!

David Cooper

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Meeting #878 Theme “Slogans

Posted by on Jul 10, 2017 in Meetings

Toastmaster Caleb Vercoe

Caleb proved to us all that we must very good listeners as most of us at todays meeting knew all the marketing slogans he tested us on. So back to the TV ads for me!

Dion Ebrahim our Grammarian for the meeting

Dion started his role by telling us he would be assessing our actual grammar through the meeting and to report who was using slogans. A bit of a challenge in this case as even though we were great at the test of Slogans, not so good at actually using them. Our grammar was in question as well but over all a good report and a very thorough one at that. Well done Dion.


Alan Calder
Turn back time

Alan talked about accidents and injuries while doing recreational sports. while Alan has had injuries he focused on his wifes repeated injuries including a broken leg. Moral of the story try and learn from our mistakes and try to avoid the same things and as we get older it becomes more difficult to recover. Stay Smart, Alert, and prepared.

Brent Ruru
Dream Design Do

Brent told us to have a plan or you will find yourself fiting into somebody elses plan. Brent gave us some ideas to inspire Dreaming, writing lists of what matters most, what makes you happy, what you do everyday. Put together experience boards of photos to remind you of whats been achieved.
When making big plans try the analogy of when painting a big fence that looks overwhelming just look at painting a few palings at a time. Then brent told us a story about their travels biking across Canada even though Bears live there and love bikes too. Follow your dreams.

David Clarkson
Over the horizon

We were treated to a great story with photos of his recent trip through Europe This was very inspirational in it self. We all felt like we were there with David and his wife. Amazing pictures David.

Table topics

Helen McLeod did not disappoint with the fun part of the meeting. Helen used Table conversation cards. Each card has a question to be read out and discussed, although catching a couple out. All the table topics speeches were well put together as mini speeches and entertained.

We had some great evaluations this week, although some common themes came through. Simple things. Remember to speak up, look around and keep to time above all enjoy!
Time for a ………?? “world famous in New Zealand”

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Winter Surprises

Posted by on Jun 12, 2017 in Meetings

The meeting started out with Brent Ruru wearing a Santa’s Hat. That was very appropriate because it almost feels close to a North American’s Christmas. Caleb Vercoe, our Toastmaster, tied it together with the theme of Winter Surprises. Has it really been 5 years since the last great snow in Christchurch? Caleb reminded us why we should look forward to winter- snow, new lambs, and cold frosty crispy mornings… Can I push the FAST forward button, and stop at summer?

Sustainable was the word of the meeting- best practice for/ in the environment. Alannah Vickery, our grammarian, told us about the 3 pillars of being sustainable 1) environmental, 2) economical, 3) social well being. She wondered though, shouldn’t sustainable also include ‘giving back to the land’. I think it should. Do you?

Speech 1
Helen McLeod introduced Sandra Chatterton’s Winter Garden’s Speech. Helen cleverly got our attention by mentionning George Clooney in the same sentence as garden.

What does George Clooney have to do with gardening? George is the name of Sandra’s dog, and Clooney’s wife is into gardening.Hope I got that right…

Hope I got that right…

Sandra gave a brief introduction into her garden. She divided her garden into rooms. I thought this very clever but later learned that it is a gardening term. Sandra gave a vivid picture of her many ‘rooms’. In her rose garden, she has Dog Wood. No it’s not a wooden dog. That’s how much I know about flowers and garden. It’s a name of a tree that has brilliant red leaves. Her middle room has cherry trees and a BBQ and the back room is where her vege garden does all the work to feed her family.

Sandra left us with some reminders for us:

  • Sharpen your tools
  • Start planting your winter garden
  • Dig over the crops, keep your garden sustainable
  • Plant roses, perennials and don’t forget to prune your roses.

David Cooper evaluated Sandra’s speech and commended her on great use of visual words, using the rooms to help us guide our mind, and giving us a ‘job tip’. Some suggestions for her — make as if you are talking to someone in the back room to raise the volume of your voice, and bring some photos of your garden!

Speech 2
Louise Green introduced Brent Snow and told the audience that he’s been travelling up north visiting family in Keri Keri. They have a farm and snuck in the word of the day… are they farming sustainably?
Brent’s non manual speech was titled Power Listening. He went through the 4 types of listening:

  1. Cosmetic– blah, blah blah, and not really paying attention to the speaker. (We don’t do that at Toastmasters!) He got a chuckle from the audience when he said that he put the phone down while his sister was talking, thinking he had enough time to make a coffee. He got caught!
  2. Conversational—general talking with general interruption. Listen-talk-think
  3. Active- more effort in put into listening & the process. You want clarification, and you summarise what the speaker has said. This blog made me listen actively this morning, that’s for sure!
  4. Deep- those conversations that you have that are rare in your life (well, mine at least) – where you feel a connection with the other person, and you almost finish their sentence. You are quite clearly on the same wavelength. Super natural…
    Brent challenged us to ask open-ended questions, to listen and response and to ask yourself if the speaker is using visual, auditory or kinaesthetic when they talk. Reflect this in your own speaking.
    Alan Calder evaluated Brent’s speech and wondered if Brent could have use ‘the challenge’ throughout his speech. Alan liked his delivery, and commented that the opening and the closing reflected each other. Well done.

Speech 3
Rodney introduced Alana Bogart and was looking forward to her speech. He told us that it was a humourist speech and it just fitted nicely between 5 to 7 minutes!Alana certainly brought humour to our morning. She talked about supermarket shopping which we can all relate to. More than that, she made herself to

Alana certainly brought humour to our morning. She talked about supermarket shopping which we can all relate to. More than that, she made herself to topic of humour. You certainly can’t offend anyone then!

“I am one of those” she repeated throughout her speech—from the person who bangs into person with the trolley, “I am one of those” , to the person that makes the mountain of fruit fall on the floor, “I am one of those”, to fondling soap and doing the sniffer test with laundry soap. And of course, who doesn’t know the experience of waiting in a queue to finalise your shopping (“I am one of those” ) ONLY for the person behind the trolley to run out to get the last minute items- like… the diarrhoea tablets.
Royden Gibbs had the hard task of evaluating her speech because she did such a great, entertaining speech. One thing that he did suggest was to watch for rhythm & pace. Use the Pause Effect. The difference between the gap (like gasping) vs the deliberate action (stop and hold)

Table Topics
Claire Ruru used the Winter Surprises theme to create a murdered Santa Scene… Who, what and how did Santa get knocked over? Six people had to convince us why they were innocent of the crime while at the same time pointing the finger at someone else. That was a great table topic. I loved participating as did Veeja, Courtney, Greg and one of 4 of our guest (sorry, didn’t catch your name).

The Toasty Award went to Alana Bogart with her supermarket speech “I am one of those”
Congrats Alana !! ending this tale of our morning of June 9 2017 on a high note!

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#872 Overcoming Challenges

Posted by on Jun 6, 2017 in Meetings

Greeted by our Sergeant at Arms Mo, there is always a reflective grin when you see the whites of a beaming smile.  Thank you to our visitors Courtney, Gillian, Brooke and David.

Denise was our Toastmaster.  It’s always exciting to see a person step up to the plate, take a swing with the role and smash it out of the ballpark!  To regenerate is to rejuvenate and the passion for our still broken city was woven to connect all the speakers that followed.  The meeting had fantastic flow, great job Denise.

Another first time for a newbie Toastmaster at getting up in front of the crowd was Hayden who amplified the word of the day ‘rejuvenate.’  To make something young or restore to a former state had many in the audience discussing face potions later during the break.  For some of us it was what putty!

Natalie launched into her speech ‘Nothing is What It Seems’ using a stick for a prop.  One must see the big picture whereby a stick defined is two ends separated by a bit in the middle and the reference to rehabilitating a woofie after it ate a meowie.  Or two.  That bit was less ca’s -chy!

Danny the computer door salesman and ‘What is an Ultra Panel?’  Simple, watch the trends, push the limits, be a leader versus a follower and have a sense of humour to name a few.  Most importantly, beg for forgiveness rather than ask for permission.

Roydon’s camp fire story about his role model Charlie had the guest make comment at how engaging it was to be lost in translation.  Or captured by the skill and prowess that Roydon used to captivate us with, “Growing up is not about expecting you to conform to what other people expect of you.”  Roydon took away the ‘toastie’ award of the day.

Table topics lead by David C had robbers; recreating yourself; what old music would you like to see revived; and how would you revive either a pet budgie, dog or horse.  Guest participation was exemplary and the demonstration of doing mouth to mouth on a pet dog certainly had been practiced before.

All the evaluators – Anton; Alannah; Steve; Terrelle and Alanna (GE) shared things that worked and things that could be worked on for the speakers and fellow members doing the introductions.  Add Louise who rattled out the overs and under’s times amplified one of the quotes of the day.

Quotes of the day by Alanna were: “Stop being a hog” referring to those who steal time from others by going overtime; and her “Mark dresses himself at the front a lot” referring to Mark dressing himself a lot at the front.

“Please come back” was echoed in the meeting somewhere.  Just come to a meeting.  It just might

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Awsome 80’s Meeting #872

Posted by on Jun 6, 2017 in Meetings

Kristy Lawler rocked us into action and set the scene for our toe tapping, seat dancing meeting this morning.

Sabine Parry’s Awsome 80’s theme linked our speech marathon meeting with the speakers favourite 80’s song – a very creative way of getting to know our members – and delivered in true 80’s dress style – loved it, thanks Sabine.

Walking on Sunshine Terrelle Hegarty’s “Thesis in 3” gave eye opening stats about the basis of her thesis on the theories of Women in Construction, admitting one of her biggest challenges will be solving her time hog traits when delivering the thesis in real life.

Welcome to the Jungle Mark Glanville’s “Grief is a Serious Business” encouraging us to be aware of the different forms of grief so we can be more prepared when faced with it ourselves or others around us, giving us some serious business stats.

Fairytale in New York Steve Kennelly’s “Power of Attorney” another very informative and valuable need to know topic delivered with humour using a personal experience with his in-laws to get across some cautions & tips about the need to consider having a Power of Attorney.

Leading in with Working Hard for her Money, not sure we were expecting Vivien Cowey’s topic to be “We don’t want to be compared to Accountants” … but another very informative and useful topic explaining the differences between a Bookkeeper and an Accountant, with a clever analogy between doctors and nurses …

Living on a Prayer David Cooper’s “Signs of Life” helping us ensure we get what we want out of life using atleast 1 if not all 3 of the key ingredients LOVE, ACCEPTANCE & FORGIVENESS and the warning signs if these are missing from your life.

Living Doll Rodney Ford’s “Misfits” about how digging through some brain junk which in reality is the valuable talents we’ve pushed aside from our youth, has led him to joining a musical band “Misfits”. Another gem from Rodney’s hidden talent collection surfaced this morning within his 1980’s pride and joy guitar – bring your amp next time!

See you all on Friday 😊

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Meeting 870: Winter Blues

Posted by on Jun 6, 2017 in Meetings

Brent Snow called the meeting to order in a timely fashion and we all settled in to enjoy what promised to be a great way to finish up the week, the xxx meeting of the Boaters Toastmasters Club.

Winter Blues was the theme of this meeting, as decided upon by our toastmaster, Claire Ruru. While the technical definition of Winter Blues relates to depression and a general winter funkiness, Claire determined this meeting would be upbeat and positive, as it soon turned out to be. Throughout the meeting she encouraged us to beat the winter blues by heading to the mountains with both family and toboggin in tow, or up to the Port Hills to enjoy the wonderful walks and incredible views.

Vivien Cowey clearly thought about how to beat the winter blues in her role as grammarian, namely through the giving and receiving of compliments. She encouraged the club to graciously accept a compliment with eye contact and a genuine “thank you”, rather, than as so many of us do, dismiss the compliment through the finding of a fault about their person. She also handed out a sheet containing a multitude of positive and uplifting words, including ‘fantastic’, ‘dynamite’, ‘phenomenal’ and ‘remarkable’.

Brent Ruru introduced our first speaker of the day, Mark Smith, with a barrage of compliments, and a brief story about Mark’s time in Antarctica and the gift of a crystal, which, due to a last-minute bout of cold feet, luckily stayed on the frozen continent, and not with Mark, which therefore avoided him a possible $10,000 fine when he returned to Christchurch.

“Mother’s Day out of Control” by Mark Smith, speech 3 from the Competent Communicators manual. Mark opened his speech with a brief history of Mother’s Day, including its beginnings in the U.S. by Anna Jarvis in 1908. He had obviously done his research as he was able to support the commercialisation of this holiday with statistics such as $1.53 billion annually spent on gifts, $2.6 billion on flowers, $68 million on gift cards and in NZ along, over $50 million on restaurants. Mark told us that after 9 years, and official support of this holiday by Congress, Anna Jarvis began to react against her celebration of mothers due to its blatant commercialization, her response against Mother’s Day was so zealous that she was even arrested in 1948. Mark closed his speech with a recommendation of his own regarding Mother’s Day; namely make Mum a card, celebrate her with words and deeds, give her your time and perhaps most importantly, give her the day off.

Caleb Vercoe introduced speaker number 2, Mark Glanville, very cleverly using sign language, to acknowledge New Zealand sign language week, he even showed us the sign for Donald Trump, which elicited a good laugh from the audience.

“Driving Change” by Mark Glanville, project 8 from the Competent Communicators manual. Mark’s objectives for this speech included the use of effective story-telling and not using notes. The basis of this speech were the highlights of a course he recently participated in through his work; he could share the details of this workshop with us but wasn’t allowed to provide any written material. He used both a Power Point presentation and a whiteboard to support his findings and share this knowledge with us. From this workshop, Mark’s company introduced a “Prompt card for phone enquiry”, thus ensuring key points would be discussed with each potential client, including the use of empathy for each caller and an invitation to come in for a personal discussion about the client’s needs. The initial need for this new initiative came about as there was no single ‘voice’ in regards to telephone inquiries and after the workshop, the “upshot of this change is everyone is now on board.”

Kevin Cusack introduced Helen McLeod with a thorough overview of Helen’s professional qualifications and accomplishments. Kevin then stayed on to play the role of radio interviewer for Helen’s project 2 speech from the Public Relations Manual: Radio Talk Show.

Helen started off with the statistic that one in six people in New Zealand are diagnosed with a mental illness, ranging from moderate to extreme. She then gave a detailed overview of what the Supporting Families program does and how they support New Zealander’s with mental illness and their families; 7 field officers work directly to help, advocate and support. During the Q and A session, Helen responded thoughtfully to Kevin’s questions and answered all three questions easily.

Mark Glanville announced the week’s bulletin notices, including an acknowledgement of Brent Ruru as the president elect, a Toastmasters convention that day and presented Vivian Cowey with her Competent Communicators Manual certificate.

Alan Calder, the table topics master for the day, created two word topics for the day, including Winter Fitness, Winter Driving, Winter Escape and Man Flu. These topics were skilfully spoken about by Deb McAlpine, Alanah Vickery and guests Flavio and David.

John MacVicar evaluated Mark Smith’s speech. He commended Mark on achieving his objectives and his only recommendation with to reduce the use of notes.

Mo Yakubu evaluated Mark Glanville and commended him on his use of props and for achieving his objectives. The only recommendation was for Mark to start to one side rather than directly in front of the power point presentation.

Alana Bogart evaluated Helen McLeod and highlighted that this speech wasn’t about body language but rather about the quality of the delivering and speech content, as on the radio, body language is not a factor. Alana recommended Helen be aware of her use of ‘um’s’, as a number were used throughout the talk show. She congratulated Helen on achieving her speech objectives.

Sandra Chatterton, the table topics evaluator, gave a good synopsis of each speech and also acknowledged the difficulty of the TT speech.

Terrelle Hegarty gave a very speedy breakdown of the mornings time and Danny de Hek as general evaluator, had some recommendations such as ensuring the introduction was present at every speech, nerves and body language and reading from notes. However, overall, his general evaluation was very positive.

Flavio, one of our guests, won the Toastie Award for his table topic speech on Winter Driving.

Claire wrapped up the meeting with a call to cheer away the Winter Blues by spending time with family and friends over delicious home-cooked meals and baking.

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