By Kimberly Dueck, DTM
This has been a year like no other! It’s hard to believe we are coming up on a YEAR since we began isolation and our Toastmasters world went entirely online. While we have faced significant challenges, in true Toastmasters fashion, we have not given up! It’s so important to take time to celebrate small wins …. that all add up to big victories!!
I could not be prouder of our District 61 team this year. You have displayed true Leadership, Innovation, Perseverance, and Community Spirit!!!
Moments after the election in April 2020, the district leadership team was already hard at work recruiting their teams, discussing strategy, and creating action plans. The FULL District team was filled AND trained by the end of May 2020.
Area Directors quickly embraced their roles and began engaging with the incoming club executive teams well before July 1 which allowed us to get a running start to the year. We are seeing an increase in area council meetings which is a fantastic way to help clubs collaborate and overcome challenges TOGETHER!
Looking ahead, the district team is already recruiting our successors for “all hands on deck” striving for a strong 2nd half and smooth transition into next year. Are you interested in seeing your career or business grow exponentially? Leadership in Toastmasters WILL help you get there! Contact your Area Director if you are interested to learn more!!
District 61 is constantly finding new ways to support our members! Toastmasters is a great place to try new ideas out in a SAFE environment!! “Strive for progress, not perfection” (unknown)
- Clubs are leveraging new technologies to create a better club meeting experience; i.e. using break-out rooms during breaks to connect with each other and guests or to allow a greater number to participate in table topics.
- The PR team is taking our communications to another level with engaging ads for our events. They are hard at work to improve our district website to enhance our member experience!
- Division D has taken our district online meetings to new heights in collaboration with “value dialogues.” Having smaller group discussions allows for greater collaboration and involvement from participants.
In spite of losing many clubs and members this year, our clubs continue to see guests at meetings and signing up new members! We have seen many great examples of clubs finding new ways to market the new skills we are learning as a result of being online.
Hint: the online world is here to stay long after COVID is gone. We have connected globally more than ever before!! We have seen guests attend our events from all over the world.
We have welcomed several new clubs into the D61 community and many others are in the works! With no geographical barriers, the opportunities to create micro-communities within our Toastmasters community are there! Starting a new club is a great way to create a community of like-minded people who share similar interests!
Isn’t it great now with a click of a button, you see many smiling faces of friends (old and new) on your screen? Having each other during these challenging times is so important!
The number of opportunities to connect with each other has been amazing this year. From the awesome district education and recognition events, to the social events, to the many club meetings happening throughout the week…we are connecting like never before!
I hope to see all of you soon at the Speech contests and the ONLINE Annual Conference!
How about you? What are you grateful for this past year? Take some time to celebrate successes with your club!!