Maximize Your Toastmasters Journey – Practice Transferable Skills
What are transferable skills? Why do they matter?
Last month, Danny Ly, current club president of Table Talkers, was giving a speech about four core values of Toastmasters International: Integrity, Respect, Service, and Excellence. Danny is a successful young entrepreneur who owns two 7-11 stores. In his speech, he shared a story about how he revealed the core value of “accountability” with his employees.
This month is the half-way point of this Toastmasters year. At the beginning of the year, our vision was to charter 46 new clubs and to inspire more leaders, mentors, and coaches. As the District Director, I want to know what the overall performance of our district is as of this month. How can I hold all district officers accountable for tasks they committed to at the beginning of the year?
Do you see the link between these two stories? Both Danny and I are trying to recognize, learn, and practice the leadership skill of accountability. Accountability is a transferrable skill for Danny at work and for me as the District Director. Any member, not just Danny or me, can learn any transferrable skills at Toastmasters and apply them at work. But why recognize, learn, and practice?
Recognize. Danny recognized that there was a problem with his employees. When things are not getting done at stores, people are pointing fingers at each other instead of being accountable. He recognizes that it is important to add accountability as a core value to his business so that everyone understands and practices it as the culture of the business.
Learn. Like Toastmasters, the 7-11 franchise parent company offers leadership training periodically. So Danny as an owner can learn leadership skills and be successfully in his business.
Practice. Danny has learned that talking to employees one-on-one is a good approach. Through those one-on-one meetings, Danny was able to successfully practice the leadership skill of accountability. This is probably the most challenging step of all three. Because learning leadership skills alone do not guarantee that one will become a successful leader. It’s the practicing that will make a leader become a true leader.
That is to say, it is important for our members to practice communication and leadership skills in addition to just learning about them. And serving in Toastmasters can be challenging but it also serves as a great learning and practicing opportunity.
Are you practicing communication and leadership skills? Do you want to challenge yourself to develop a new set of skills in 2016? The morale of the story is that by setting goals and practicing new skills, you will maximize your Toastmasters journey.