Why MBA Students need Toastmasters

RJ Thomas with Dananjaya Hettiarachchi, World Champion in Public Speaking 2014 ToastmastersMBA Students are notoriously busy people. Either they are taking many classes or running a business on the side. In China we also have to learn Chinese language (Mandarin), the Putonghua or common language of the people in the world’s second largest economy. To truly have an advantage after graduating from MBA school, you need to have superior communications skills.

Toastmasters International is the leading organisation worldwide offering structured training through regular meetings in communication and leadership. Many complete only the basic level of Competent Communicator (CC), which is 10 prepared speeches with feedback, to ensure they have a foundation in public speaking and delivering presentations in a confident manner.

MBA students enter the business world with high expectations from their colleagues and hiring managers. You are almost certainly on a fast track to management and eventually CEO with some hard work. However, most business schools do not directly offer training in sales, persuasion or public speaking. Enter the Toastmasters Communications track:

After receiving CC recognition, you can work in the Advanced Communication Series. There are 15 manuals, each containing five speech projects. Many of the manuals are career-oriented. You choose the manuals you want to complete and the skills you want to learn. Working in the advanced manuals, you’ll refine and enhance your speaking skills and become eligible for several awards:

As an MBA student at Ningbo University (NBU) in Zhejiang province, China, I’ve been thrilled by the impact the new Toastmasters club has had in bringing together both foreign and Chinese students on a regular basis for a shared learning experience.

The Business College at NBU has sponsored for chartering of the Toastmasters club. Membership is limited to students, teachers and graduates. Of course guests from other clubs and the community are always welcome. We decided on this to ensure a feeling of fraternity among members. Students get to meet graduates, many of whom have started their own businesses. They have opportunities to practise and prepare for class presentations, oral examination through Table Topics and much more.
MBA students may apply some of theoretical ideas in a practical ways by sharing business ideas or case studies from class. Certainly entrepreneurs do pitches to investors when they start new businesses; on the other hand you may enter sales areas where you need to persuade the audience to your point of view. And when you’re the CEO you need to inspire and lead your team. All in-all is available for an investment of only $36 per 6 months.
What are you waiting for to join?

 

Toast to Toastmasters

Toastmasters International south africaTonight I won two awards at my local Toastmasters meeting. Toastmasters International is a non-profit organisation that helps individuals improve their public speakings. My club is has meetings twice a month at Old Ed’s (next to the Virgin Active) in Houghton, Johannesburg. And tonight I did my 3rd speech. The basic Communications & Leadership program has 10 speeches that teach you the fundamentals of public speaking. I was hoping by now to be on my 5th speech but frequent travels had forced me to postpone some of my speeches.

Anyway I’m going to kill those remaining ones as quickly as possible to move onto advanced topics. Public speaking is considered by many as one of the greatest fears people have. And if you can overcome public speaking you will conquer you inner fear and as Dr Paul Dobransky says that when you do courage you build confidence. In fact he says its scientifically measurable, so if for every 100 points of courage, you actually gain 100 points of confidence which you can use in other areas of your life e.g. approaching women.