toastmaster of the day (TMOD)

Toastmaster of the Day: Complete Guide (Checklist, Script & Tips)

The Toastmaster of the Day (or Evening) is essentially the Master of Ceremony, i.e. MC, of the entire Toastmaster meeting. Every Toastmaster’s meeting is like a mini-event, and every event needs a great host. By mediating between speakers & role players, setting the tone of the meeting by choosing an entertaining theme and keeping the audience engaged, the Toastmaster of the Day or TMOD is the backbone of every Toastmaster’s meeting.

Importance of a Toastmaster of the Day

To understand the importance of the Toastmaster of the Day, think about the Oscars. If the Oscars did not have a host, it would just be a bunch of people coming on the stage and accepting their awards.

The nominations could play on the screen and the awards and performances could just be announced one-by-one by a guy behind a speaker.

There would be no mediator, no one to hold the entire event together.

The host entertains the crowd and creates a link between the audience and the speakers. The audience becomes familiar with the host because she keeps coming back on to the stage. Soon enough, the audience start to “know” the host better. And this helps add some comfort to an otherwise plainly listed event.

While the speakers are the heroes of the day, a good host provides the necessary break required from the agenda of the event.

Taking the Oscars’ example again, while everyone was mainly interested in who is going to win, in 2014, Ellen Degeneres lightened the mood of the event with her highly entertaining gimmicks of ordering pizza and her infamous selfie which made the Oscar event of that year memorable beyond just the winners.

And it’s the same with the Toastmaster of the day. Not to compare a Toastmaster meeting to the Oscars, but the example can draw a parallel here. See what I’m saying?

ellen's oscar selfie shows how fun and memorable a host can be

A Detailed Toastmaster of the Day Cheat-Sheet

Whether you have played the role of Toastmaster of the Day before or you’re playing the role for the first time, here is the detailed flow of how you can go about the role without missing on aspects of the meeting and being an overall entertaining host who perfectly holds the meeting together.

Before the meeting

Your work as Toastmaster of the Day starts well before the meeting begins. Here’s what you need to do in preparation of your role as the TMOD:

Choosing a theme

Choosing a theme is the fun part of being the Toastmaster of the Day. You get to determine the tone of the meeting based on the theme you pick.

So how do you go about choosing one? Here are 3 points to follow for this:

1. Entertaining

Your theme should be something that allows room for entertainment. You don’t have to have the audience rolling on the floor laughing, but it should delight them in some way.

For example, one meeting I attended had the theme as ‘Horrible Bosses’ where the TMOD spoke about how annoyed he is of his current boss. The humour of the content he used was light & amusing and since most of the audience members could relate to it, they found it highly entertaining.

2. Inclusive

By inclusive I mean your theme should relate to every audience member. So it’s critical you keep your audience in mind when you select your theme.

The theme you pick for an audience which consists of mainly youngsters will be different from a theme that includes a lot of senior citizens. If your audience consists of a mixed age group, choose a topic that is age agnostic.

Related article: The Importance of Knowing Your Audience When Delivering a Speech

3. Relevant

If a holiday is around the corner, or a big news event has broken out recently, you can base your theme around that as you can be sure everyone would know about it.

For example, if a highly anticipated movie is about to be released, you can base your theme around that movie. It’s entertaining, inclusive, relevant and fun!

Side note, try to not choose a very generic theme. Go deeper into the topic to come up with something different.

For instance, instead of choosing a theme such as ‘Pizza’, you can keep your theme titled ‘The Friend at Every Party: Pizza’.

That’s probably not the best example, but you get my point ;).

Here are some theme ideas to inspire your pick:

  1. The Thing About Motivation
  2. NO’vember
  3. Not-So-Scary Halloween
  4. The Cannibalism of Veganism
  5. Millennials: Lazy or Misunderstood?
  6. The Good, Bad & Ugly of Artifical Intelligence
  7.  The Lost Art of Storytelling
  8. Keeping Secrets
  9. Gossip (And Why is it Good For You)
  10. The World of Netflix
  11. Marvel vs DC
  12. The Era of Electric Cars
  13. Are you Investing Yet?
  14. Say NO to Supplements
  15. The Life-Changing Hobby of Blogging
  16. The Death of TV
  17. The Great Inventors
  18. Understated Diseases
  19. What Kills Productivity?
  20. Advertising is Dead
  21. The Greatest Salesman in the World
  22. The Magical World of Mythology
  23. What Rap Teaches Us About Life
  24. Music For the Soul
  25. Food and Food Porn

Now, if you want more broad themes, pick the main keyword from the above options and drop the rest of the title. I just personally prefer to have a unique theme that delves deeper into a said topic. You can check out this article to read an example of a TMOD theme with a twist.

However, if you want broader themes, just pick the bolded keywords from the list of themes instead! It’ll give you a lot more room to play around with.

Reaching out to members

After you’ve chosen your theme, it’s time to start preparing for your content. Since you are going to be mediating the entire meeting, one of your critical roles is to introduce every speaker and role bearer for that meeting.

Now, you could just call on the speakers one-by-one in a simple, boring manner or you could use the introductions as an opportunity to help the audience get to know the speaker a little better. You can also entertain them in the process.

To craft a great introduction, you need details.

Once you have your theme in place, reach out to the Vice President of Education. She is usually the one who prepares the agenda in a Toastmaster’s meeting.

Ask her for the names and contact details of the speakers and role bearers for that meeting. Reach out to them and ask them questions that can help you get information to introduce them. You can ask questions such as:

  • What is their speech title?
  • What is their speech project?
  • What’s their current profession?
  • How long have they been a Toastmaster?
  • Why did they join Toastmasters?
  • Any achievements they have had in Toastmasters or in their professional lives?
  • A question related to the theme.

So for example, if your theme is ‘Horrible Bosses’, you can ask is whether the speaker has had a horrible boss and what was that experience like.

When you’re doing this outreach, don’t forget about the TAG team – Timer, Ah Counter and Grammarian. They are the ones who are going to help you run the meeting and it’s important to give them a proper introduction as well.

A great introduction is important and we tend to underestimate its power. It’s what gets the audience excited about the speaker and makes them (the speakers) feel a little good about themselves.

Related article: How to Introduce a Speaker in Any Setting (And Amaze Your Audience)

Have a copy of the agenda ready before you go up on the stage. It will make it easy for you to follow the meeting’s order and deliver your introductions without forgetting things like the speaker’s name, speech title, speech project, etc.

While you must practice your delivery, it might get a little difficult to remember so many names and titles. So have the agenda handy with you at all times.

A quick note, speak to the Vice President of Education and ask her if there have been any last-minute changes in the agenda. Many times, speakers or role players may back out at the last moment and the organizing committee may have to look for a replacement.

If that’s the case, make that change in your printed meeting agenda. If you do have the time before the meeting begins, quickly find that replacement and ask him the questions that you had asked the role bearers when you had done your outreach before the meeting so you have some material to introduce the speaker.

Your content outside the introductions

While your job is to introduce the speakers and role bearers, you still need to keep the audience engaged. That’s the job of an MC.

When preparing for your role, have some content outside of the introductions which is just between you and the audience.

This content is ideally to be around the theme you have selected and is meant to entertain the audience, change things up from just having speech after speech and keep the entire meeting lively, interactive and engaging.

For example, this one time a TMOD at a meeting I was attending had set the theme as ‘Stories: They Change Things’. In between two speeches, he broke the monotony of the meeting by introducing a quick, interactive game to keep the audience engaged.

He said that he is going to create a story on the spot but would need the audience’s help to do so. He went on to say that he would start the story with a sentence and the next person he points to would have to pick up from that sentence and say a complimenting sentence that would help the story progress.

Then, the audience member sitting next to that person says another sentence in relation to the previous sentence. This goes on and on until each audience member has had a chance to contribute to the overall story.

Because the game is so simple and humorously ridiculous, it made it a lot of fun! People were saying all kinds of crazy stuff which made the audience chuckle.

As a TMOD, your job is to do that, introduce elements in the meeting which make it fun and interactive. That’s what a good host does…and that’s what makes her memorable.

The Role

Introduction

The day is here. You have your material ready. Now is the time to play the role.

A Toastmaster’s meeting usually starts off with the Sergeant At Arms followed by the Presiding Officer followed by you – the Toastmaster of the Day.

When you first come on to the stage, don’t just start off by introducing the speakers and role bearers.

Start off by talking a little on the theme of the day. You can talk about why you chose that particular theme, a story based on the theme, how the theme is relevant to the audience, etc.

For example, let’s say your theme is ‘The Cannibalization of Veganism’, which is talking about how the trend of veganism is taking over; you can start off with talking about how veganism as a concept emerged and why you too are considering going vegan.

Just an example, of course (no one is asking anyone to go vegan)!

Before moving on to the introductions, take a moment to take the guests (people who are not Toastmaster members) through the structure of a Toastmaster’s meeting. Explain to them that a meeting is (usually) divided into 3 parts: The Prepared Speeches, The Table Topics and The Evaluations.

Take them through what these rounds entail. Your introduction could go like this:

“Fellow Toastmasters and dear guests. It is my privilege and pleasure to welcome you all to the [name of club] Toastmaster’s club. For the benefit of the guests, I would like to explain the structure of the meeting. The meeting is divided into three rounds. The first is The Prepared Speech Round where members will be delivering speeches based on the projects and paths that they have chosen. The second part of the session is The Table Topics Round, where members can practice thinking and speaking on their feet. This round is also known as the Impromptu Speech section. Guests are welcome to participate in this round as well. The third and final part is The Evaluation Round in which all the prepared speeches as well as other aspects of the session will be evaluated by the General Evaluator and his / her team.”

(You can skip the above paragraph if the Presiding Officer of that day has already explained the meeting structure.)

Remember, before getting into this, it’s best to start your role by talking a little bit on the theme and providing some sort of story to highlight the importance of the theme you have chosen.

Take a head-count of how many guests are present in the meeting. If there are quite a few guests (about 30% of the audience or more), take a moment to also talk about the history of Toastmasters and what it stands for.

If do want to speak more on the history of the organization, you can check this page out from the Toastmasters International website.

You can also do a quick interactive round with the guests of that meeting. For instance, you could ask the guests in the meeting to raise their hands and ask a few of them their take on veganism.

It’s simple, sticks to the theme and makes it interactive. You also make the guest a little more comfortable as it’s likely that this is their first ever Toastmaster’s meeting.

The TAG team introduction

You then move on to introducing the TAG team – the Timer, Ah Counter & Grammarian.

Start off by stating what these roles are about and why they are important. Keep this part brief as the role players themselves will be talking about what their role entails.

Related article: How to Perform the Role of Timer | Toastmasters

Related article: How To Perform The Role Of Ah Counter | Toastmasters

Related article: How To Perform The Role Of Grammarian | Toastmasters

Your script could go like:

“As the Toastmaster of the Day, it is my duty to introduce the role bearers who will assist me in the running of today’s Session (You can either call the General Evaluator to introduce the TAG team or continue with the below script depending on what procedure your club follows). To keep track of the time spent by each speaker, please help me welcome the Timer for today’s meeting, Toastmaster Raj. (Allow Raj to introduce himself and his role). To track the good and not so good usage of grammar, we have the grammarian of the day, Toastmaster Lee. (Allow Lee to introduce himself and his role). To keep track of the ‘ahs’ and ‘ums’ during the meeting, we have the Ah-Counter of the day, Toastmaster John. (Allow John to introduce himself and his role).”

After you call on each role bearer, allow them to speak a little on their role and their duties. Don’t just read out all the role players at once.

As your introducing them, talk about the details you had asked from each role player before the meeting.

After each of the TAG team members are done with their role introductions, move on to the speakers.

The prepared speeches

toastmaster of the day introducing speakers and role players

When introducing the speaker, talk about the details you have gathered about them in preparation for your role as TMOD.

Talk about their profession, what speech level are they delivering, their journey in Toastmasters, their thoughts on the theme of the meeting – everything we discussed above earlier in this article.

However, be mindful to not keep the introduction too long. A good intro is short but impactful and gets the audience excited for the speaker.

Right before calling out the speaker on stage, ask the evaluator of the speaker to read out the speaker’s speech objectives.

Remember that if two speakers are delivering the same speech level, you do not need to ask the evaluator of the second speech to repeat the speech objectives. You can simply state that the objectives are the same as the previous speaker and move on to introducing the speaker.

Your script could go like this:

“The first speaker for this round will be attempting Level _____ Project ______ from the ____ Path. To evaluate this speech, we have Toastmaster Lee. Lee, I request you to please read out the speech objectives. (Allow the evaluator to read out the speech objectives). (Add a few lines of introduction for the speaker before calling him out). Please put your hands together for Toastmaster John! (Allow the speaker to walk up to the stage. Shake his/her hand and announce the speaker’s name and speech title). (After the first speech is over, go back onto the stage to introduce the next speaker). The Second speaker for this round will be attempting Level _____ Project ______ from the ____ Path. [repeat the same process for all the prepared speeches]”

An example script for the introduction of a speaker could be as stated below. Let’s assume the theme of the day is ‘The Art of Saying No’:

“The first speaker for this round will be attempting Level 1 Project 3 from the ‘Persuasive Influence’ Path. To evaluate this speech, we have Toastmaster Lee. Lee, I request you to please read out the speech objectives. (Allow the evaluator to read out the speech objectives). The first speaker has been a Toastmaster for the past 2 years. I’ve personally seen him deliver several speeches on this very stage and he has grown tremendously as a speaker in his 2 year journey! He is currently a marketing professional and dreams of one day opening his own marketing consultancy firm. When I asked the speaker his thoughts on the ‘Art of Saying No’, he said that saying no has sometimes been one of the hardest things he has to do but it’s always been worth it. Please put your hands together for the very charming and ever-smiling member, Toastmaster John! (Allow the speaker to walk up to the stage. Shake his/her hand and announce the speaker’s name and speech title). John – One in a Million. One in a Million – John.”

Say a few short lines on the speaker, add some personal flavour to it to help the audience relate to the speaker, get the audience excited about the speaker by talking about his/her strengths or improvements and you’ve got yourself a nice introduction.

When you call out the speaker, as she is walking up to the stage to you, shake their hand and announce their name and speech title. Now, there is a certain formula that Toastmasters follows when doing this which is: Speaker name – speech title. Speech title – speaker name. That’s how it is mentioned in the script as well.

To translate that into real terms, if the speaker’s name is John Brown and his speech title is ‘The Perfect Moment’, you as the TMOD will read out the introduction as: “John Brown – The Perfect Moment. The Perfect Moment – John Brown.”

When I first joined Toastmasters, I thought this was just stupid. Why say the name and title twice?

Well, it turns out that the reason that formula came into being is because the first time the name and speech title is said looking at the speaker – to acknowledge the speaker; and the second time it is done facing the audience to ensure that the speaker and the audience both have heard the speaker’s name and speech title.

(Still not sure why this is so important but it’s something the organization just follows. If you do know the real reason for this, do email me!)

One-by-one introduce each speaker. As a speech finishes go back on stage, shake the speaker’s hand and take over the stage from them. Congratulate the speaker on their speech and comment a sentence or two on the speech if you feel like.

It’s hard to prepare for this as you can only comment on a person’s speech once you have heard it. So this is in no way a compulsion.

Also, try and only stick to saying positive stuff about the speech you heard. If you don’t have anything positive to say, it’s best to not say anything as your job is to keep the mood of the meeting light and cheerful.

After the speeches

After the speeches are done, your role as TMOD tones down a bit.

Call on the Timer to provide the timing report for the prepared speeches. (This might be different in different clubs. Some clubs call on the Timer before & after all the prepared speeches, before & after the Table Topics round and finally, before & after the evaluation round to provide the timing guidelines and reports of each of the respective sections. However, some clubs call on the Timer only once at the beginning of the meeting to provide timing guidelines for all three sessions and once at the end to provide the timing report for all three sessions. Check with your club’s executive committee as to what process should you follow.)

You then hand over the stage to the Table Topics Master who will conduct the Table Topics session.

Your script for the same could be:

“To provide us with the challenge for today’s Table Topics round, we have the Table Topics Master who will be conducting the session today. (Add a few lines of introduction for the TTM before calling him out). Please help me in welcoming, the Table Topic Master for the day, Toastmaster Mohammed!”

Related article: How to Best Perform the Role of Table Topics Master in a Toastmasters Meeting?

After the Table Topics round, the stage will be handed back to you and you then have to introduce the General Evaluator to conduct the evaluation session.

Script example:

“The next part of our meeting is an important round of a Toastmaster’s Meeting. In this round, constructive feedback is given to each speaker as well as to the overall meeting conduct so that members can benefit from the experience of evaluators and become better speakers. For this, we have the General Evaluator to conduct the session. (Add a few lines of introduction for the GE before calling her out). I would now like to hand over the session to General Evaluator of the day, Toastmaster Susan.”

Related article: How to Best Perform the Role of General Evaluator in a Toastmasters Meeting?

Make sure you conduct the same kick-ass introduction for the TTM & GE as you did for the speakers and TAG team.

Between the Table Topics and Evaluation section, you can break the usual agenda of the meeting by doing something different such as playing a quick game with the audience, showing some form of media to them like a video that relates to the theme, etc.

For example, this one TMOD had chosen a theme around drinking & driving. Between the Table Topics & Evaluations round, he showed us a video he had made in his advertising firm about people who drink and drive. It was a funny take on a serious topic that added humour to that part of the meeting and provided something different to the audience to enjoy apart from just listening to speeches.

Many times, the club also may hold a break after the Table Topics or Prepared Speeches round. This is again subjective to each club as to when they usually hold the break. You can find this out from the club’s committee and announce the break accordingly.

In the end, just speak a few final words on your theme and of how the meeting was. Try and have some actionable takeaway for the audience. Remember, no matter what role you take, it’s all about adding value. You chose your theme for a reason. So end your session with what the audience can do to benefit from that theme.

For instance, if your theme is around ‘Productivity’, your actionable takeaway to the audience could be that if the next time they feel like they are in a rut, instead of searching for motivation, they can start off with taking small steps towards their goal instead of having big, intimidating tasks in front of them (eg, committing to writing only a paragraph instead of a 3000 word blog article when you don’t feel like writing) which will inspire them to act more.

Anything that they can immediately try or adopt as a mind-set in some way with regard to your theme would be a good takeaway to end with.

Finally, hand the stage over to the Presiding Officer of the day and grab your seat!

A note, you might have to be on stage to announce and/or greet the winners of that day’s meeting along with the Presiding Officer. Again, check with the VPEd if that’s something the TMOD in your club has to be a part of.

You can download the entire Toastmaster of the Day Script & Checklist from here.

Toastmaster of the Day Checklist & Flow

Let me state the flow here for your ease of understanding:

Pre-meeting

  • Choose a theme
  • Reach out to speakers/role bearers for their introduction
  • Create content around the theme
  • Craft your introductions
  • Rehearse
  • Have a print out of the agenda ready with you to take on stage

During the meeting

  • Start by talking on the theme
  • Take an audience headcount
  • Speak a little on Toastmasters’ history (if a lot of the audience consists of guests)
  • Talk about the structure of the meeting
  • Play a quick game or do a round of introductions with the audience
  • Introduce the TAG team
  • Introduce the speakers (remember to ask the evaluator of each speech to read out the speech objectives before the speaker comes on stage)
  • Call on the Timer to read the timing report for the prepared speeches (does not happen in every club)
  • Introduce the Table Topic Master
  • Call on the Timer to read the timing report for the Table Topics (does not happen in every club. This could also be done by the Table Topic Master herself)
  • Call for break
  • Play a quick game or show the audience some form of media like a video (do anything to break the monotony of the meeting)
  • Introduce the General Evaluator
  • Call on the Timer to read the timing report for the evaluations (does not happen in every club. This could also be done by the General Evaluator herself)
  • Closing remarks (provide some final words on the theme and provide a take away for the audience)
  • Prize distribution

Related article: 5 Ways to End Your Speech With Maximum Impact!

Download the Toastmaster of the Day Checklist here.

Tips for Being a Great Toastmaster of the Day

Tips to Being a Great Toastmaster of the Day

Set the theme in advance

As a TMOD, you should pick and finalize a theme at least 5 days before the meeting. This allows the PR team to create a design creative for the meeting around that theme.

More importantly, it allows you more time to gather your introductions and prepare for your role.

Pronunciation

Here’s the thing, people have difficult names. Mine is difficult to pronounce as well.

You never know what letter is silent in some names. So it’s best to ask the speaker what is the correct way to pronounce his/her name.

I know, I know. Proper noun pronunciations don’t matter, right?

But you still don’t want to butcher someone’s name up completely! It’s just safer to ask.

Keep time in mind

While the Toastmaster of the Day is the one who holds the meeting together and entertains the audience, keep time in mind.

Remember, it’s all about the speakers.

So while you are in the spotlight for the most part, don’t stay there for too long. I remember this one TMOD who went on & on about his theme. An audience member literally had to tell him to stop yapping on the theme and carry on with the actual meeting.

You don’t want to be that guy!

Applause

As the TMOD, it’s your job to keep the audience and speakers motivated. So every time you introduce a speaker or role player, lead the applause! For the most part, the audience themselves will start to applaud (Toastmasters LOVE clapping!).

Also, when a speaker comes on stage, shake their hands to hand the stage over to them and shake their hands when you take the stage back from them.

This gives the audience a clear indication that the speech is over and the stage is being handed over to the next speaker. It also just looks better to start and end with a handshake!

Practice

Just because you’re not a speaker doesn’t mean you skip on practicing. Every time you go on stage, even if it’s just for a 1 minute speech, practice.

Related article: How to Deliver a 1 Minute Speech: Tips, Examples, Topics & More

Rehearse your content, your interactions with the audience, your introductions. Keep repeating the flow of the meeting in your head. While you should have the agenda with you when you go on stage, reading from a paper just looks boring.

So, know your content. That happens when you practice. And when you do that, you interact with the audience in a much more impactful manner.

Related article: Surprisingly Simple But Effective Processes to Practicing for a Speech

Have fillers ready

As the host for the meeting, a good Toastmaster of the Day must also be prepared for things that happen beyond the ordinary.

For instance, a speaker’s projector screen is taking time to come on, the voting ballots are being counted slowly, a speaker does not show up to speak.

These are things that you can’t plan for.

As the host, it’s your job to keep the audience entertained and distracted from the technical delays that are holding back or slowing the progress of the meeting.

So, plan for problems in advance. Have some filler ideas ready before you go up on stage. If and when a problem arises, you can use them.

For example, you can have some debate topics ready based on your theme. Or you can call one of the speakers and conduct an impromptu interview with them on stage about their speech.

I remember this one time, I was attending a meeting and the voting ballots were taking really long to be counted. The theme of the meeting was ‘Superheroes’. So, during the delay, the Toastmaster of the Day played it cool and asked the audience a question, “Can Batman really defeat Superman?”

Immediately the audience started murmuring among themselves. The TMOD then asked, who feels the answer is ‘yes’ and who feels the answer is ‘no’ to raise their hands one after the other. He then asked an audience member on each side of the argument to present their points on why they feel the way they do.

It was great! It was simple. It kept the audience engaged and no one even realized the voting ballots took over 10 minutes to be counted.

So, have some filler ideas ready. You never know when you might need one!

Bonus tip: Mentor

When you join Toastmasters, you are (in most cases) assigned a mentor from your club. He/she is usually a more senior member of the club and can guide you with your speeches and roles.

When deciding on your theme and content as the Toastmaster of the Day, run it by your mentor before making anything concrete. Your mentor would have seen more meetings and would probably be in a good place to judge whether or not what you’ve decided will work with this audience or not.

Creative Toastmaster of the Day Ideas

Here are some creative themes and ways to conduct the role of the Toastmaster of the Day a bit differently:

The talk-show

Instead of holding a meeting with a “meaningful” theme, why not rely on improvisation?

The talk-show format relies on you, the TMOD, asking talk-show type questions to the speakers and guests where you treat them as pseudo-celebrities.

I remember seeing the talk show format in my old club where this woman (let’s call her Jade) titles her theme as ‘Morning Tea with Jade’.

The whole idea of the theme was that she would call on the speaker and have a micro talk-show interview with them asking them questions like ‘Why did you join Toastmasters’, ‘Why do you think you are a good speaker’, ‘Name a defining moment in your life’, ‘Who is your favourite audience member’.

The idea is to provoke a response that might be awkward or humorous. It helps keep the entire session entertaining because the audience doesn’t know what to expect!

If you do choose this theme, craft funny questions and try to have different questions for different people to avoid monotony.

Music

If you’re a musician, you can base your entire theme around songs.

You don’t have to be a professional or anything. Even if you know the basics, this can work just fine.

I had attended one meeting where the TMOD was a singer. He started off the meeting with a song and went on to talk about the beauty and importance of music in everyone’s life.

He would then break into song in between speeches and sessions, call on audience members to jam with him. In the end, he sang a super popular song and made the entire audience sing it along with him!

He wasn’t a professional, but he was good! And everyone was highly entertained because the theme was so different. While ‘Music’ as a theme is quite common, the way he conducted the meeting by actually showcasing his musical talent was what made it different and fun.

You can do this with guitars, violins, keyboards as well. Drums might be a little hard though…

Sports

Again, while sports is a common theme, it’s the execution that makes it unique.

This one meeting, the TMOD was a cricket fan. To conduct the meeting, he brought a bat and a sponge ball. Every time after the speech would end, he would hand the bat over to the speaker and bowl a few balls to him. At the end, the speaker with the most number of hits would win a special prize.

Even the Table Topics Master used the ball to conduct her session. Instead of asking audience members to volunteer for Table Topics, she would throw the ball to any member she would want to call up on to the stage!

It was so different to have something like this! You don’t usually expect a pseudo game of cricket to take place in the middle of a Toastmaster’s meeting. But that’s what made it entertaining.

Conclusion

The Toastmaster of the Day is the one that holds the meeting together. A strong TMOD can make a meeting full of bad speeches, entertaining. However, a not-so-good TMOD doesn’t necessarily ruin a meeting of good speakers.

In my experience, the better one is at public speaking overall, the better they are at being a TMOD.

If you’re just starting out with public speaking, I would highly recommend you to check out this course: Acumen Presents: Chris Anderson on Public Speaking on Udemy. The 5 tools of public speaking – connection, narration, explanation, persuasion and revelation – taught here are immensely helpful. 

Being the founder of TED Talks, Chris Anderson provides numerous examples of the best TED speakers to give us a very practical way of overcoming stage fear and delivering a speech that people will remember. His course has helped me personally and I would definitely recommend it to anyone looking to learn public speaking. 

But there is no need to take a course before you actually give this role a shot! The downside is low. If you haven’t been a TMOD yet, I highly urge you to volunteer for this role. It’s a lot of fun and there’s a lot you can learn from it.

Hrideep Barot is the founder and chief writer at Frantically Speaking, a portal to help people learn everything about public speaking. The purpose of franticallyspeaking.com is to showcase the lessons that he has learned (and still learning) from his numerous stage experiences and mentors over all these years.