Toastmaster Icebreaker Feedback

Not much feedback during the meeting – a few compliments, but of course that makes it harder to find things to improve. Ah-counter (checking for ‘ah’, ‘um’ and so on) did a very fuzzy report, and I didn’t hear my name. Timekeeper also didn’t report times, and I wasn’t sure if the grammarian was complementing or criticizing. Most of it was a few gems in the individual feedback slips that get handed around after the meeting.

  • The closing was too abrupt. Most of my practice runs were cutting the time close – by the time the meeting was approaching, I was seeing the time go down, and as usual it went faster while I was ‘on stage’ I did say that it was going on the shortest yet (even though time feedback is extremely coarse grained) and should have added one of the extra lines on the book from the ‘cutting room floor’
  • Watching breathing – more specifically, make breaths less obvious. This will take some serious paying attention to even spot.
  • Watch pacing. I think I was using a breath as a pause, and considering that part of the flow. I’m going to have to figure out how to have a pause without just standing there.
  • Some words get clumped together. Back to talking too fast. This was one comment I also during the actual meeting. It’s kind of a known problem – I think faster than I type or talk, so it’s always a challenge to keep myself operating at the speed of the output device.

Of course given the volume of the feedback there were a few outliers as well

  • Needs more organization. Examples please? I had an opening where I stated the five things I was going to talk about, talked about them using the state, restate, example, state suggested by the manual, and then briefly reviewed the topics again. Far more people said I had great organization, so I’m going to have to treat this as an outlier until I get more concrete advice.
  • Missed the intended topic. Really? This wasn’t exactly a book review. I talked about what I am, not just what I do. I suppose you wanted to hear where I work, where I went to school, and what I named my pet fish in the fifth grade?

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