Posted by on Feb 9, 2018 in Meetings

Our Sargant at arms Natalie Perzylo got the meeting started on time ran through the housekeeping rules (phones off or on silent) etc and did a great job of warming up the audience for the toastmaster of the day!

Our Toastmaster for the meeting, Deb McAlpine introduced the theme for the meeting, “Survival” Deb mentioned that she had read an article in the “M2 magazine” whilst on an airplane flight on Richard Branson’s, 75 close shaves with death!

Deb, went on to say how the rebel billionaire does a lot of adventurous things like hot air ballooning, skiing surfing, to name but a few, so it’s not surprizing that you would have some close shaves with death but some of the stories are quite quirky, for example at the age of 3 he decided it would be a good idea to go sledging on a “tin tray” and hitting something on his way down, resulting in him going “backside over turkey” and ending up face down in the “lounge” and his mother said, “that’s why he looks like he does today!” Deb, shared many more stories of Richard’s close shaves with death on the “transitions” between roles, helping to make it a great & very enjoyable meeting!

Greg McGeorge was our grammarian of the day tied in to the theme of the day nicely, using Sir Richard Branson’s favourite saying, “screw it, let’s do it!” That saying reflects his can-do attitude, even when people are telling him that it can’t be done!

Getting back to word of the day, Greg thought the obvious choice for the word of the day which tied in to Sir Richard’s business empire was “Virgin” causing some laughter from the audience…. Quickly followed up by “I knew that would happen” and that’s why it won’t be the word of the day! Greg, went on to share the word of the day “Entrepreneur” and along with the official definition of the word, Greg said he preferred Sir Richard’s definition when he is describing himself, “An Entrepreneur is a person that wants to make a difference to people’s lives”

The people with a speaking role today where encouraged to use a few of Sir Richard’s popular sayings, from “Fantabulous” (combination of Fantastic & Fabulous) to Entrepreneur or maybe for our guests within “Table topics” to use “screw it, let’s do it”!

Gary Musson did a great job of introducing our first speaker of the day Mark Smith.

Mark Smith’s icebreaker speech titled “Hey, Derice are you dead, no man I’m not dead yet!”

Mark, combined his speech with a near death experience, or at least that’s what it felt like to him at the time, with the classic 1993 film, “Cool running” a story of the Jamaican Bob sleigh team at the 1988 Calgary winter Olympics crashed just meters from the finish line and “Derice” asked by his team mate, “Hey Derice are you dead?” and he replied “no man I’m not dead but I have to finish the race!” They picked up the bob sleigh and finished the race! They chose not to give up but to finish the race, so remember when you’re feeling “dead” remember what Derice said “I’m not dead I have to finish the race!”

Louise Landess, introduced our second speaker of the day Claire Ruru with her Icebreaker speech on the new pathways program under the leadership & Development programme.

Claire’s speech, titled “Father’s Day surprize goes rouge” was full of humour around her child hood up brining.

Claire shared some great insights from her child hood upbringing, from the time she had finished primary school and had become a petty thief, the lesson I learnt from that was never be a dairy owner. Claire blamed her brother for some anger management issues because he was teasing her and locked her out, resulting in her kicking the door in! Earning herself, a bit of a reputation in her dad’s eyes!

Claire also shared with the audience, how she eventually discovered the joy of backpacking & cycling around a weird & wonderful world! The good news is, Claire is no longer known as the family rouge!

David Pottinger gave Steve Kennelly a humorous introduction on his Ice breaker speech on the new pathways programme, titled “Steve From Accounts”

Steve, reflected back on his original “Icebreaker speech” – “Steve From Accounts” back in 2014, three and a half years ago in a very humorous way!

He mentioned for the most part, nothing has changed. I am still known at work as “Steve from accounts”, I am still an accountant, I am still treasurer, I still do not have a hobby as I spend the majority of my time ferrying my kids around to their hobbies!

Our Table topics master Mark Granville did a great job of keeping on theme!

Our table topics contestants were, Kevin Cusack, Sabine Parry, Louise Green and Michael, a guest visitor at our meeting.

All contestants did a great job!

Speech evaluations:

Roydon Gibbs gave a great evaluation of Mark Smith’s Ice Breaker speech.


Mo Yakubu, did a great job of evaluating Clair Ruru’s Ice Breaker speech.


Grant Beattie also did a great job of evaluating Steve Kennelly’s Ice breaker speech

Table topic evaluator, Courtney Tibbotts did a great job at evaluating the table topic contestants, giving some great feedback & recommendations were necessary.

Our Time keeper Alana Bogart gave some great advice on the importance of the “time” being given by the introducer to the “time keeper” and the difficulty with the “new timer app” of not being able to alter the time after the timer has been started. Also, on the new pathways program some of the times have changed and if this is not accurately communicated to the time keeper, it makes the role very difficult.

Our general evaluator for the day was Terrelle Hegarty who really did excel in this role by giving great evaluations on the remaining roles that hadn’t been evaluated already. Terrelle really takes pride in this role and strives to deliver great feedback!

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