On July 1st Joel Heffner blogged about what he termed The Ugly Side of Toastmasters. He began by praising them for being:
“...the best to help you to overcome your fear of public speaking.”
But, then he started sniping about how a speech evaluator might not know enough, and thus miss key points. Then he proclaimed that, instead:
“If you want to become a proficient speaker, find someone who knows how to speak who will help you.”
Well, Toastmasters already does that. Like the Prego sauce slogan says, it’s in there. Each new member is assigned a more experienced member as a mentor by the club’s Vice President Education (see page 16 of When You are the Vice President Education). The mentor provides evaluation feedback to help a speaker improve. Toastmaster magazine repeatedly has discussed this in articles like The Joy of Mentoring, The Magic of Mentoring, and Leadership - the ultimate mentor.
Also, you’d expect an experienced teacher to proofread his copy before posting. There still were a pair of typos (corrections in CAPS):
“After you make ten speeches, you have (ARE) given the title of Competent Communicator.”
“Too often the evaluator simple (SIMPLY) goes by the guidelines set forth by Toastmasters, in their manuals.”