Visiting as a Guest
Does the club meet year round?
Menlo Park Toastmasters Club meetings are held every Tuesday 7:00 PM to 8:30 PM except for Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years Day. However, please keep an eye on the Announcements page in case the meeting is cancelled due to scheduling conflicts at the venue.
Do I have to be invited to attend?
All guests are welcome, alone or with others. There is always a greeter available to greet everyone at the door to make them feel welcome.
What is my role as a guest? Will I be asked to speak? Is there any charge?
A club member will introduce you at the beginning of the meeting and at the end of the meeting you will be given the opportunity to comment if you feel inclined to do so. There is no charge for guests. Sit back and enjoy the meeting.
Do I have to make any commitments as a guest?
All guests are welcome to visit us as often as they wish in order to familiarize themselves with the club, and the program. No commitment is necessary, but returning guests will be encouraged to become a member. Membership is the only way to gain access to all the benefits of Toastmasters International programs and resources.
Do I have to join right away?
You are welcome to visit our club up to four times before applying for membership. Members will answer all your questions and encourage you to make an investment in yourself that you will never regret. When you join our Menlo Park Toastmasters Club, you will join a diverse and vibrant community. Together we succeed supporting each other and achieving new goals.
I attended a meeting as a guest, and felt a little intimidated by the speakers. What do I do?
All members start with different abilities, experiences and comfort levels. However, the primary goal of Toastmasters is not for us to compete against each other, but to improve ourselves. When you invest effort in the program and your personal goals, and practice often, you will soon start seeing improvements. Sooner than you’d think, there will be another guest feeling a little intimidated by you!
Becoming a Member
Do I have to attend every meeting?
We understand that life situations and career may, from time-to-time, interfere with a member’s commitments. We request that if you cannot attend a meeting, you send regrets to the VP Education and arrange for a replacement if you are responsible for a meeting role.
What is the cost?
Club dues are $60.00 for six months in January and June. For new members joining dues are pro-rated from the month they become members. Once you join Toastmasters International, you’ll receive your New Member’s Startup Kit. Membership includes a subscription to “Toastmaster” magazine.
I am not a very good speaker. Can I still join?
Absolutely! That is why Toastmasters was established. We meet people where they are and give them the tools and support to improve their public speaking and leadership skills. You will have the opportunity to complete a curriculum of prepared speeches and leadership projects that will give you confidence, experience and expertise. We are here to support each other, give feedback and have fun in a positive learning environment.
I do not speak English well. Can I still join?
Absolutely! There is no better place to practice your English skills than Toastmasters. Participate in club roles as well as give impromptu and prepared speeches to develop your skills. A mentor will help and guide you through all club activities.
hate speaking in public. I get really nervous. Will that ever change?
Absolutely! With regular participation at club meetings and consistent progress in the Toastmaster’s Program, you can learn to control nervousness and actually use it to improve your performance. You will gain confidence and learn to present in a professional manner.
Are good speakers and leaders that way because they have natural ability, or can it be learned?
While some people do have natural ability, anyone can learn to become a good speaker and leader. Your results will increase exponentially with the amount effort you invest in the program and your goals.
How do I know what to speak about?
After you join Toastmasters, you’ll receive your Competent Communicator Manual with a list of the ten speech categories you need to complete to achieve your Competent Communicator Award.
How can I learn more about the various meeting roles?
There is a handy document entitled “A Toastmaster Wears Many Hats” that is available to download. It provides a wonderful summary of all roles and gives specific tips on how to prepare for each role.
How long will it take me to earn my Competent Communicator award?
There is no set time limit. You set the pace for giving your speeches. But the sooner you start taking on some smaller roles, the more comfortable you’ll feel giving your speeches. Please discuss your goals with your mentor and the Vice President of Education, so that the club can help you meet your goals.
Does Toastmasters have a mentoring guide?
A wonderful overview of member mentoring can be found on the Toastmasters International website by clicking here. Being a mentor not only helps the new member, but it enriches you as an experienced Toastmaster and benefits the club as a whole!