BUSAN, South Korea – In an episode of Seinfeld, Jerry Seinfeld once quipped that, “According to most studies, people's number one fear is public speaking. Number two is death. This means to the average person, if you have to go to a funeral, you're better off in the casket than doing the eulogy.” If your one of those people looking to brush up on your public speaking skills, the Busan Toastmasters is what you are looking for.
In 1924, in a Santa Ana, California YMCA, Toastmasters International was established to help people who had a fear of speaking in public and in front of audiences. Since then, it has grown to over 12,500 clubs in 113 countries around the world, including Korea, that gives people a chance to practice and master communication and leadership skills.
In Korea, Fiona Haysom is the first and only Distinguished Toastmaster (DTM), the highest honor to Toastmasters members. To achieve that, it took Haysom four years of dedication and leadership in Toastmasters Clubs in Canada and Korea.
Fewer than 12,000 of Toastmaster's four million past and present members have completed the 40 speeches required for a DTM. Haysom was a leader in the official chartering of the Busan Toastmasters Club and has acted as Club Mentor – shaping the success of the club for the future.
Toastmasters clubs provide a friendly, supportive program to help individuals gain public speaking and leadership skills. The 20 club members of Busan Toastmasters meet two hours per week to present and evaluate three 5-minute speeches.
The success of the program relies on club members taking leadership roles to plan and run club meetings, mentor each other and give each other constructive evaluations. Speech topics and goals vary, sharing information from books or personal life experiences. Each speech is evaluated through an evaluation process: watching for unnecessary words, grammar, vocal variety, speech organization and gestures. Members and guests can also participate in ‘Table Topics’, where an impromptu question is answered in a two minute speech. This empowers members to speak clearly and confidently when they are “put on the spot.”
Toastmasters has been recognized as a successful program for students and professionals to gain important communication and leadership skills to apply in the workplace, and in their personal lives.
“It is a terrific challenge to move out of ones comfort zone, achieving – but also making mistakes – and learning how to recover and move on,” says Fiona Haysom, after receiving recognition as a Distinguished Toastmaster on April 21, 2010.
Right here in Busan, the Toastmasters Club can train you to be a confident public speaker and a professional leader. Guests are invited to join the meetings, which are every Wednesday at 8:00 p.m. in the Biology Building (room 109) at Pusan National University.
For more information, you can contact Monika Goforth, Busan Toastmaster Executive Officer at email@example.com
Visit http://busan.freetoasthost.cc for more information.