“I am relatively new to the Toastmasters fraternity. Do you think I will be able to handle this new responsibility?”, I asked Toastmaster Pankaj Pradhanganga, Area A6 Director, in an unsure tone when he offered me the post of Area A6 Secretary in June 2019. He said, “I have faith in you! I think you will do well, Roshan.” Well! That was the end of the conversation, and also my hesitation, and the start of the new journey as the secretary of Area A6 Council for Year 2019/20.
Looking back, being part of the Area Council, which added three new clubs- Bhaktapur Toastmasters Club, Academia Toastmasters Club, and GATE College Toastmasters Club- and was awarded President Distinguished Area, and seeing the new thriving Toastmasters community in all Area A6 clubs, I think accepting the offer to be secretary of A6 was one of the best decisions of last year.
Accepting an offer is a natural and easy step! But what follow- the responsibilities, your commitment to fulfilling those responsibilities as your call of duty, and your mission throughout the term- are challenging and hard. But the joy you receive after the successful installation and progress of the clubs make the feat immense and satisfying.
As the secretary of A6, I had the opportunity to help coordinate and mentor Bhaktapur Toastmasters Club for its few early meetings. I was the first Toastmaster of the Morning for its first official meeting at Club Bagmati. It was a small crowd of very enthusiastic Toastmasters who were eager to learn and explore. The result is apparent now! They have already been awarded President Distinguished Awards for fulfilling all DCP goals within 10 months of establishment.
As a club mentor, I also oversaw Academia Toastmasters Club. From a demo meeting conducted at a small restaurant in Maitighar to regular meetings at Sap Falcha to the virtual Zoom meeting, they have excelled and improved tremendously. I am proud of the fantastic progress Academia Toastmasters is making.
My role as Area A6 secretary is ending in a few days, and I am ready to pass the baton to the new secretary. Also, lots of you are taking different roles in your club, area, and division for the next term. I know, these roles are voluntary. You won’t be paid. But, what you learn in terms of managing people, clubs, and meetings are priceless. You will meet and know lots of talented and motivated individuals, broadening your horizon of network. You will also learn how to manage expectations, and in times, how to go beyond those expectations and make it grand.
Taking a leadership role is not a straight line of success. You will come across many disappointments and deadlines, miscommunications, and misgivings that you can’t ignore. So, if you want to be a successful club leader, stay optimistic and focused, and enjoy the waves as they come.
Roshan Ghimire, Area A6 Secretary, Tourism/Academia Toastmasters Club