Speech Contest

Tonight, I chaired a speech contest at one of my local Toastmasters clubs, Reading Speakers. I can’t tell you how impressed I was at the standards of speeches and calibre of people who helped out behind the scenes. I just wish there were more of them! 

There were actually two contests tonight. a speech contest where people spoke for 5-7 minutes on a subject of their own choosing; We had subjects as diverse as ‘Football – Sport or business’ and ‘Continuous Improvement’, and we had an evaluation contest, where a person from another club gave a speech to be evaluated multiple times so that the evaluators can be judged.  How brave do you think you have to be for that! Could you deliver a speech to a 30 strong audience knowing that 5 vof those people are going to stand up and tell you exactly what they thought of it? To give you a critical evaluation of how they perceived your speech?    Most people would be terrified at the prospect, but we had two volunteers for this slot!

How about entering the contest itself? Would you be brave enough to deliver a speech or an evaluation knowing you were being judged and it wasn’t just that ever present ‘feeling’ that you were.

What about helping out behind the scenes? We had visitors from 3 other clubs to help make this thing work, and without them we would have struggled to get things done.

Sooo much work has to get done behind the scenes to make these things happen. If you think it’s brave to enter the contest, have a think about putting it together in the first place and chairing the whole thing or being the chief judge! 

We have a fantastic organisation at Reading Speakers, and one I’m proud to be a part of. EVERYBODY who took part in any capacity this evening has earned my respect by doing instead of just thinking about it.  

What reward do they get for doing this? For the most part, nothing physical (although I did give out a couple of bottles of wine as a personal thank you), but they get the knowledge and satisfaction of a job well done, another fear conquered, another step forward in their personal ambitions to achieve more. They get the immeasurable reward that comes from DOING what they knew they should be doing.  Could you do more? DO you think you should? Do you KNOW you should?

Do it, do something, do it now and tell me what you did. Help me make the world a better place by making yourself a better person.



3 Responses to “Speech Contest”

  1. 1 Jeff.Wang August 20, 2007 at 5:44 am

    Mark (I think you are Mark, right?), I like your “By doing instead of just thinking about it”.
    The reality is that a lot of people have great talents and great idea, but they just don’t have the time to do it. (You know what I mean by this, right?)
    But actually, there is no difference between a person with great thoughts but never put them into practice and a person without any thought.
    It’s something about execution, the hot issue now on Management Science.
    Do you agree?

  2. 2 mbsprogress August 20, 2007 at 10:26 pm

    Absolutely Jeff
    Execution is KEY, the only difference is the terminology, and I’m more of a common sense kind of person than a buzzword type person. Theres been too much focus in the past on learning how to do things, and not enough on actually DOING.
    This seems to be particularly true in sales and management, where more and more training is pushed at people who really should just be doing the things they already know how to, but are being held back from by fear, misunderstanding or just poor personal management (leaving them with a lack of time to do the things they need to.)

  3. 3 mblog123 August 29, 2007 at 10:07 am

    Hi Mark, I am Hazel (mblog123). Thank you for your comment on my blog: Failure is a verb, not a noun.

    On this thing about EXECUTION…. great topic. Just wanna share this with you:

    Great ideas: cheap.
    Knowing what to do with them: priceless.


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About me.

A professional speaker focused on helping people get more out of their day; for themselves and their companies.
I help people get things done by helping them realise that all the knowledge in the world will do absolutely NOTHING for them - if they don’t use it.
I want to change the world, and getting the right people in the right place is only the start. In todays world it is so, so easy to get pulled into doing all the wrong things. I help people figure out what the right and wrong things are and make sure their energies are focused in the right place.
Feel free to comment, or you can contact me by emailing markbell AT mbsprogress DOT com



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