Learning Through Evaluation

Everest Toastmasters Club, established in 2004, is known to have a beeline of membership request. Maintaining 50 members, the club is in a constant dilemma to accept or suggest other clubs. It honestly submits that it cannot provide equal speaking opportunities if it starts accepting all requests. 

Members from Everest Toastmasters Club have opened 90% clubs in Nepal, 100% Division Directors and 75% of Area Directors. It proves that leadership development goes together with communication skills. Recently, members from this club are mentoring other club members to take up leadership roles. 

Guests find it intimidating at Everest Toastmasters Club as the members prepare and execute a near perfect meeting with terrific speakers and role players, vouched by visiting Toastmasters from different countries. Every member takes to heart the core values – Integrity, Respect, Service and Excellence. 

During my visit to interact with the club, I asked members to single out one major reason for joining this club. Majority mentioned ‘Evaluation’ to be the deciding criteria. The club is supposedly known for providing no-nonsense, harsh critique often requesting members to repeat their projects. Yet, the key element members sought was proper, honest, useful, workable feedback that was motivating and encouraging. 

One of my fundamental efforts has been to replicate the evaluation done at Everest across the Division, especially to new clubs. Toastmaster Bhanu Dabadi, member since 1998, graciously accepted to lead the evaluation program. Two half-day workshops in Sep/Oct brought together the best evaluators from each club across 6 Areas. They brainstormed on how evaluation training should be designed and conducted. 

The structure and content is being worked out to be implemented from mid-Nov 2019. I believe this will help new members and old alike, to chisel their evaluation abilities and help members become better communicators and leaders. 

Suman Shakya, DTM 
Division A Director

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