Wednesday, 11 January 2017 03:07

Expanding Our Horizons in Nashville

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Have you ever found yourself in a situation where the more you work, the less is being accomplished? To maintain and increase our productivity level and expand our horizons, we need to take time to renew, refresh and rejuvenate. We freshen our perspectives and stimulate positive changes. We rejuvenate our relationships by networking and sharing ideas with others.

Two days prior to the Toastmasters International (TI) Convention, all the trios (District Director, Program Quality Director, and Club Growth Director) of 100+ districts from 13 regions (nearly 16,000 clubs in 142 countries) were vigorously trained, by TI staff and International leaders.

In January, midway through the term, all trios from each region travel to a specified Midyear Training location, to assess the progress and strategize the second half of the term, with another region.

This term’s Midyear Training for Founder’s District trio of 5— District Director Siri Payakapan, Program Quality Director (South) Dan Cossack, Program Quality Director (North) Karen Lucas, Club Growth Director (South) Diana Dee and Club Growth Director (North) Chris Collins, TI matched Region 10 (covering Founder’s District and Districts 1, 3, 5, 12, 34, and 52 in Southern California, Arizona, and Mexico) with Region 5 (covering Districts 8, 11, 30, 35, 40, 43, 54, and 63 in Tennessee, Arkansas, Mississippi, Missouri, West Virginia, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Wisconsin, and Michigan).

TI staff and our primary facilitators—International Directors Michael Orsur (Region 10), Magnus Jansson (Region 5), Region Advisors Linda Rhea (Region 10), and Michelle Kabele (Region 5) made sure we all expanded our horizons from the 2-full day interactive sessions on Communication and Conflict, Managing District Goals, District Finance, Succession Planning and Transition Strategies, Ethical Elections, Organization Update, and The Pathways Experience. We connected with and learned from fellow leaders who have been on similar journeys under different sets of circumstances.

My take-away from the Midyear Training was TI’s Training Workbook on Ethical Elections. The list of Board-Identified Competencies for each District leader position—District Director, Program Quality Director, Club Growth Director, Administration Manager, Finance Manager, Public Relations Manager, Division Director, and Area Director can help voting delegates to identify whether a candidate possesses the knowledge, skills and attributes required for a given role. We will send these Competencies out to all voting delegates, prior to the Spring Conference, to encourage elections based on competencies, rather than popularity.

My other take-away from the Midyear Training was District 12’s use of sequential ballots at business meetings. This will save time in determining the required quorum at Spring Conference which starts with a combined Business Meeting, followed by two separate elections for the South and the North.

Yes, we will have three separate Credentials Desks for voting delegates to be verified and given ballots. One for the combined business meeting, a second for the South elections and a third for the North elections.

The two previous Region 10 Midyear trainings were held in Anaheim and San Diego. My last training as a trio has been extra special with the sight of snow drizzling on downtown Nashville while the 45 district leaders were exchanging lessons learned and ideas. I will also treasure the good times we shared, enjoying southern cuisines and live country music together.

The Founder’s District trio will do our best to utilize what we learned to train our 10 division directors and 52 area directors on Saturday, January 21, to expand our personal and leadership horizons together.

Members, I want you to know that we are ready to finish the year strong by collaborating with YOU!

Let’s have more fun while expanding our horizons!

Photo Caption: Sitting row from left: Program Quality Director (North) Karen Lucas, Program Quality Director (South) Dan Cossack, District Director Siri Payakapan, Club Growth Director (South) Diana Dee, and Club Growth Director (North) Chris Collins
Standing row from left: International Director Michael Orsur (Region 10), Member Support Director Darci Maenpa, International Director Magnus Jansson (Region 5), Region 5 Advisor Michelle Kabele, Information Technology Director Sam Farajian, Region 10 Advisor Linda Rhea, and Training and Development Supervisor Kate Rynerson


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Siri Payakapan

Siri is the Founder's District Director for 2016-2017. She has been a member of Toastmasters since 2006. Her theme for this year is 'Expand Your Horizons'.

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