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23. A New Series: My Personal Journey in Public Speaking: 10. My Journey in Serving Others - Mentors

One of the requirements in achieving the Advanced Leader Silver (ALS) qualification is to be a MENTOR to a CLUB for a season (min of 6 months).

Being part of the Division W Council at that time, I was given the opportunity to mentor a NEW CLUB in the Division. Working together with another Mentor really helped me as I was very busy with a newborn son at that time. I managed to commit to and attend one meeting out of two meetings a month.

As a Mentor, I was given the opportunity to observe how the new club was run and took every opportunity I had to either be a General Evaluator or another form of Evaluator, either for Project Speeches or Table Topics.

Every chance I got, I decided to inspire the members by commenting on the club meeting atmosphere, what they have done well, areas where they could have done better and how they can be agents of change, to encourage others whom attend their club meetings.

  • As General Evaluator, I took the opportunity to compliment the role players whom have shown confidence, whom have shown initiative and whom have shown willingness to learn.

  • As Speech Evaluator, I made sure I took extra time to give tips and share best practices, both during my evaluation and informally during refreshments, to the speech givers themselves as well as other new members.

  • As Table Topic Evaluator, I decided to share general tips that I learnt over the years on basic stuff like overcoming mental blocks, how to get ready when you are not ready, and cooking up material within ten seconds.

Overall, my half year plus journey as a Mentor gave me much learnings. As much as I hoped I encouraged and taught the members of the new club, I definitely gained a lot of insight and personal growth from my time as their mentor.

Some ways being a Mentor has helped me include:

  1. Feeling grateful to Toastmasters and the New Club for the opportunity to serve

  2. Realising that being a teacher does not mean that you only teach, but that you also learn from your students

  3. Realising that being an encourager does not mean that you only encourage, but you in turn get encouraged by those you encouraged

  4. Realising that helping others does not mean that you are a better person, but as you do, you do get better as a person

Questions to consider:

Are you currently a mentor in Toastmasters?

Are you a mentor in work life?

Are you a mentor in your personal relationships?

Do you have a mentor?

What could being a mentor do for you?

What could having a mentor do for you?

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