What Can I Do at a Contrarians Meeting As a Guest?

At Contrarians, we love guests! In fact, it's fair to say that just about every Contrarians member began as a guest of the club. As our guest, we welcome your attendance and will do everything we can to familiarize you with the Toastmasters program and our club's procedure.

As a guest, we encourage you to:

Arrive before the meeting starts at 6:30 PM so we can greet you and ask you to create a temporary name tag so we can learn your name. The club's Vice President of Membership, Sergeant at Arms, other club officer or member will greet you and orient you in this

Sit among us so you can observe the meeting

Introduce yourself when the presiding club officer or meeting Toastmaster recognizes guests. Don't worry - we won't make you give a speech! You need only give your name at this point

Tell us a little more about yourself, as well as what you liked about the meeting, during the business segment at the end of the meeting. The club President (or other presiding officer) leads this brief interview segment

Tell us even more about yourself and your expectations of Toastmasters after the meeting. The Vice President of Membership and other club officers look forward to speaking with you individually to answer your questions about the program and the club

We even encourage guests to participate in our Table Topics segment. The Table Topics segment is the impromptu-speaking segment - speaking "off the cuff" or "on the fly" - of the meeting. The Table Topics Master asks a question that no one has heard previously, and the respondent must answer the question right away, with no time to prepare; the response is typically one to two minutes. Sound challenging? It is! But extemporaneous speaking (giving an answer "off the top of your head") is a highly coveted speaking skill - think about how many times you must do this in your personal and professional lives - and the Table Topics segment is a favorite among many of our members.

That is why we encourage guests to answer a question, if they so choose. As a guest, you are never obligated to answer. But it is a great "try before you buy" experience. And many of our members, attending first as guests, did just that. Then look what happened: They joined Contrarians.

Contrarians is a club for members only. As such, we have certain practices during the club meeting that are reserved for members only:

Voting: Each meeting, members vote for who they think was the best prepared speaker, the best Table Topics speaker, and the best speech evaluator during the meeting. This vote is for members only. As a guest, please do not use the voting ballot should one be at your seat

Best Table Topics speaker ribbon. As noted above, one of those votes is for the member we think was the best Table Topics speaker. We heartily encourage guests to participate in the Table Topics segment; however, guests are not eligible to be awarded the Best Table Topics ribbon. (Hint: This is another reason why you want to join Contrarians)