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NEWSLETTER Club News and Events

District: 41 Club Number: 01141787 Club Name: Toastmasters Club of Pune (TMCP) October/2012 INSIDE THIS ISSUE 1 Ralph C. Smedley 2 Presidents Musings 3 An Inspiration 4 Club News 5 New to Toastmasters? 6 Google It

Ralph C. Smedley (February 22, 1878 – September 11, 1965) The founder of Toastmasters International, an international speaking organization with more than 2,35,000 members in 106 countries and more than 12000 clubs

Club Deadlines Membership Renewal Most of TMCP members have renewed their membership for the period of Oct 2012 – March 2013. If you still have not renewed your membership please contact Hon. Treasurer TM Alok Vij. You may write to him at

Every Saturday, Toastmasters Club of Pune provides a platform to many individuals to attain competency in communication & leadership skills. After every successful speech, & evaluation we feel happy & more confident about ourselves. Somewhere in our heart we are grateful to Distinguished Toastmaster Prasad Sovani for starting the Toastmasters movement in Pune. Our serving President ACB Deepa Das and many presidents before her have kept the flag of Toastmasters flying high and helped all members to grow in numerous ways. But have you ever wondered how this movement first started? The late Ralph C. Smedley initiated the Toastmasters movement in the U.S in October 1924. And now it is assisting millions of people the world over.

Toastmasters Club of Pune (TMCP) Executive Committee President: Deepa Das Vice President Education: Gaurav Nagpal Vice President Membership: Angad Singh

President’s Musings Creativity is the origination of a new thing that has value. It is something that is both pleasurable and painful - the pleasure of giving birth and the pain of getting it done. It is indeed a commendable initiative to create this newsletter which will give a roundup of the happenings in the Club to its members and showcase our Club to the guests. Is creativity all about doing something big and different? Not necessarily. Most often, creativity is all about accomplishing the common tasks in an uncommon way. You can infuse creativity into everything you do, be it the small role of a timer or the larger one of winning a world championship. If we can add an iota of creativity into every aspect of our lives, it will become far more interesting and exciting. It is time, therefore, to overcome our inertia and join the ones with the verve to move forward.

Vice President Public Relations: Umesh Agashe Hon. Treasurer: Alok Vij Hon. Secretary: Dhvanika Shah Seargent-atArms: Prasad Sovani

We in Pune are taking a breather after a host of events from club contests to Division conferences. We have seen many initiatives at all levels with quite a few new leaders emerging in the process. The success of all these events was the direct result of many Toastmasters who were curious enough to take on new roles. As Leo Burnett put it, curiosity about life in all its aspects is still the secret of great creative people. Congratulations Umesh for accomplishing this task.

The Man who knows everything

DTM Prasad Sovani The Man who knows everything about everything, that’s how we describe our own DTM Prasad Sovani. Let’s congratulate DTM Prasad Sovani for being elected as Lieutenant Governor Education & Trainings, District 41 for the year 2012-13. I am sure, you are curious to know about DTM Prasad Sovani’s inspiring journey in Toastmasters and how the first Toastmasters Club started in Pune. Let’s hear the inspiring story from DTM Prasad Sovani himself.

DTM Prasad Sovani with World Champion of Public Speaking year 2012 at Orlando, Florida, USA Q: You have taken a keen part in extracurricular activities since your school, college days, & by looking at your profile (on Linked In) it seems that you have used your vocal chords passionately in your career. Tell us how, & when you came to know about Toastmasters? A: I was good in studies but weak in oratory. I had topped the state in Mathematics, and was good in languages as well—I had written poems as early as 14 years of age, and my essays were always liked by my teachers, so I was good in written communication as well but was not so good at verbal communication. Later when I started working I did well in sales as well as sales management. I could handle meetings of about 10 team members, but not larger than that. When I started working in Singapore, I realized the need for excellent communication skills all the more and started looking for opportunities to learn. I was walking along a road one night after dinner at a friend’s place, and saw a banner that said, “Learn Public Speaking, Join Toastmasters Club” outside the community centre right opposite my friend’s home. I noted down the phone number and called the next day. They had a meeting the next Tuesday and I was invited. It was club level speech contest. I was scared I may have to participate in it! But once I went there, I found the folks very friendly and encouraging. There was a contest for the audience about matching results with the judges and I got my first, second, and third winners spot on with that of the judges. That made me realize that it was a fair contest! See how things go! If the contest is judged well, the guests feel like joining! I was short on money but realized that I wanted to join this. I had a limited visa of three months and was hesitant to pay for more than that. I was assigned a mentor on day one and that guy- Gea Ban

Peng mentored me for the rest of my stay in Singapore. He asked me to write my Ice Breaker and fax that to him. (Both of us did not have an e-mail ID then). He invited me for coffee and helped me edit and then asked me to rehearse in front of him 2-3 times. He suggested some jokes in my speech as well. The day of Ice Breaker arrived. I had rehearsed it well in front of a mirror at home and fine tuned the script even timing myself well. The rule in our club was that those on the agenda would not be invited to be Table Topics Speakers, so I was relaxed in that session, but the new Topic Master that day invited me to speak! I was terrified, but I thought, that this might serve as a good warm-up for me. My attempt in Table Topics was mediocre that day, but I had started my journey! The General Evaluator commented that I was the next big thing for the club and wondered why his club never attracted such talent! Imagine hearing these words! I was extremely motivated. Q: How was your first experience of playing the role of Toastmasters of the Day that too in Singapore? A: I did reasonably well in my first project speech and volunteered to be the timer the next meeting, but was shocked when the VPE of my club put me as Toastmaster of the Evening for the next meeting. Again I accepted the challenge thinking, “So what!”. My mentor mentored me and helped me prepare the agenda. He also taught me how to speak with each member (e.g. addressing each one with Toastmaster, Competent Toastmaster etc) and what works with some of them. I dialled 23 numbers that day and got friendly with 23 members! All were very warn when I spoke to them and encouraged me to do better. (e.g. comments such as “I heard you had a great Ice breaker the other day. You are a new find for our club etc.) I did extremely well as Toastmaster of the evening and never looked back since then. Q: Which was the first leadership role you played in Singapore Toastmasters Club A: I delivered one speech every alternate meeting. When it came time for renewal, my company was about to close down and I was not worried about losing job, I was more worried about not completing 10 project speeches to earn my title Competent Toastmaster (equal to current CC) that time. The company closed down with me on Speech # 5, but my friends in Toastmasters helped me with my visa and I managed to stay in Singapore just so that I can complete my CTM. By then the club had elections for the next year and I had been elected as Vice President Membership since I was in sales and marketing. My mentor was the new President and he mentored me on that role as well. When I attended COTP (Club Officers’ Training Programme), I realized that I can be better than the rest and the competitive spirit in my got rekindled

Prasad Sovani, DTM delivering speech in Singapore, year 1996-97

Q: How did you become the first non-Chinese President in Singapore Toastmasters Club? A: My performance as VPM was good and I contested for the post of President. There was actual election and I was the only non-Chinese in my club, but again, my faith in Toastmasters became stronger when I was elected to the post of President. My mentor had mentored me for winning elections. He told me he had mentored the other guy as well, but I learnt better! I remember the election process which was very fair and each of us was asked to speak for 2 minutes and then asked questions about past experience of leadership and then again, asked to answer in one word, what made me better than the other guy! My answer “Performance” stole the show since I had delivered as VPM while the other guy contradicted his statements in that answer! Note: Second part of the interview would be published in next issue of TMCP newsletter.

News from the Club Humorous Speech Contest & Evaluation Contest: Club level humorous speech contest & evaluation contest was held on 25th August 2012. We received stupendous response from Toastmasters of the club. Competitive spirit among Toastmasters can be gauged by the fact that seven Toastmasters attempted to make audience laugh. And eight Toastmasters participated in speech evaluation contest. We are pleased to write that TMCP’s Immediate Past President, TM Beena Mandrekar, won the first prize in Division Level evaluation contest organized on 21st October 2012 (Sunday) at EON IT Park, Kharadi, Pune. She will represent Division I at Resonance 2012 in Kolkata! We congratulate her on winning the championship at division level & wish her all the best for District Level contest. When we asked to her what one change Toastmasters has brought in her life, she said that Toastmasters helped her memorize her speeches & time it.

ACB, CL, Beena Mandrekar at one evaluation

Education Session on Voice Modulation by ACG – Siraj Sayed: In Toastmasters Club of Pune, you not only get a platform to practice & learn the art of public speaking, but also get an opportunity to listen to fabulous speakers & learn from them.

ACG Siraj Sayed delivering education session

Education session on voice modulation was conducted by Mr. Siraj Syed, who is an announcer, broadcaster, compere, and dubbing artist, and has been a disciple of eminent Amin Sayani. Initially a brief education session on topic “Language to be used in speeches” was conducted on 21st July 2012 in a regular TMCP meeting. TMCP experienced a record turnout of 51 for this regular meeting. This was followed by an exclusive 5 hours educational session by Siraj Syed on voice modulation and use of voice in speeches on 8th September 2012.

Finish What You Start: It gives us immense pleasure to write about success stories in Toastmasters Club of Pune. DTM Mohan Karambelkar has achieved two titles, communication track (ACG), & Leadership Track (DTM). We congratulate ACG Mohan Karambelkar on his commendable achievement, & wish him all the best for future projects. Amongst us two more Toastmasters also completed their respective educational titles. TM Gaurav Nagpal completed ACB, ALB in supposedly one of the fastest completion of ACB. And TM Umesh Agashe completed Competent Communication Title. We wish them all the best for completing further advanced communication & leadership titles.

DTM Mohan Kalamberkar

New to Toastmasters?

FAQ 1. What is Toastmasters? Toastmasters is a nonprofits educational organization that operates clubs worldwide for the purpose of helping members improve their communication, public speaking and leadership skills. Through its thousands of member clubs, Toastmasters offers a program of communication and leadership projects designed to help people learn the art of speaking, listening, and thinking. With its Headquarters in California, USA, Toastmasters is making an impact worldwide with over 13500 clubs, in 116 countries.

2. I am afraid of public speaking, but I have realised that this is an essential skill which would take me to next level in my career. Will Toastmasters help me in this regard? Yes, definitely. The number one challenge for developing your public speaking skills is getting an audience. In Toastmasters, you would not only get an audience but you would also receive a constructive feedback from them. If you are looking for a place to enrich your communication skills, & hone your leadership skills then in Toastmasters you would get an opportunity every week to commit some mistakes, learn from them, grow, & at the same time have fun, because we at TMCP believe we grow, when learning is a fun.

3. Toastmasters is all about communication, then why the tag line of Toastmasters says “Where Leaders Are Made”? One skill common across all the leaders is their commanding communication skills. Once you start participating in Toastmasters meetings, presenting speeches, taking up leadership roles, step by step you become better communicator. And remember, as a leader you can have brilliant ideas, but if you can’t get them across, your ideas won’t get you anywhere.

4. How Toastmasters meetings are conducted? We welcome you for TMCP’s next meeting. Attend our next meeting as a guest & gain a firsthand experience of a Toastmasters meeting. We would recommend you to check video of Toastmasters Club Experience to gain an idea of how a Toastmasters meeting is organized.

5. Is it a class room coaching with a structured program? How it works? A Toastmasters meeting is learn by doing program. This is not a class room coaching, instead in Toastmasters we all grow together by evaluating each other’s presentations. Toastmasters is known for its unique process of giving each other a constructive feedback. But it has a structured program which is based on learning’s of more than 8 decades.

6. When and how frequently Toastmasters Club of Pune’s (TMCP) meetings are held? We meet every Saturday evening 5 PM to 7 PM either at Bhartiya Vidya Bhavan School or Symbiosis Law College off S. B. Road. For getting information regarding TMCP’s next meeting, you may write to VP Public Relation CC Umesh Agashe at

7. What are the fees for joining Toastmasters Club of Pune (TMCP)? Fees keep on varying based on US dollar exchange rate. Currently fees are as below Joining Fee:

Rs. 1500

Monthly fee:

Rs. 450

We take fees for next 6 months; this is to ensure that both Club & the member demonstrate commitment. For more information, please write to VP Marketing TM Angad Singh at or TM Vaibhav Mehera at

8. Who can join TMCP meetings? Any person above the age of 18 years can join Toastmasters Club. For juniors, we are thinking of forming Gavel Clubs, work is in progress.

9. As a guest, can I participate in TMCP meetings? Yes, you can not only attend the meeting as a guest, but most probably you will also get a chance to talk in Table Topics, which is an extempore speaking session.

10.Where I can get more information regarding Toastmasters Club’s available in Pune? Please visit our site to get more information regarding Toastmasters clubs available in PUNE.

Google It In this section we would like to inform you relevant content available on internet regarding Public Speaking, Communication, & Leadership. In our first newsletter we would like to highlight one of the website dedicated for speaking & presentation skills. This is Six Minutes by Andrew Dulgan. One of the most popular articles in this web site is Toastmasters Speech Series. This is an excellent feature for both new & seasoned Toastmasters. Objectives of each project from Competent Communicator manual has been discussed in details along with ample examples of speeches for each Project. We are sure; members of Toastmasters Club of Pune would find this site helpful for preparing better speeches in our club. Also, do not forget to read an interview of Ryan Avery, winner of 2012 World Champion of Public Speaking. Please click here to access the interview conducted by Andrew Dulgan.

TMCP Newsletter Oct 2012  

This is a monthly eNewsletter of Toastmasters Club of Pune. The sole purpose of this eNewsletter is to share success stories of fellow Toast...

TMCP Newsletter Oct 2012  

This is a monthly eNewsletter of Toastmasters Club of Pune. The sole purpose of this eNewsletter is to share success stories of fellow Toast...