Never Say Never

On our last meeting on the 5th of November, our well prepared Toastmaster of the Evening Mariana began her moderation with a quote of Alexander Graham Bell: “Before anything else, preparation is the key to success.” She did a wonderfull job, she knew how to introduce the speakers and put them in the spotlight.

The first speaker Sunder gave his CC#2 speech entitled “#T.W.O”. He started his speech by arousing our curiosity. He told us that he was about to “reveal the mystery of how things got their names.” This topic got his attention in February, when he worked on a project named Phoenix. He thought that the project had been named after the bird, but during a discussion with a colleague, he was told that the project had been actually been named after the city Phoenix, Arizona. Sunder took us in an excursion through the history of names. At the beginning in the military the names were given at random. The British used Rainbow Codes system which randomly combined a color and a noun, thus the name had no connection with the project. On the other hand, the German adopted name codes that reveal the identity of the project (for instance Sea Lions Operation- an operation to attack Britain by sea). He mentioned the use of acronyms (e.g. RADAR, which stands for  RAdio Detection And Ranging) or backronyms (e.g.  USA PATRIOT, which stands for  Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act). At the end, he revealed the significance of his title #T.W.O, which stands for Theme Words Organization.

The second speaker was Prateek, who delivered his CC#3 speech entitled “The $w€€t $¢€nt of Mon€¥”. He shared with us his opinion that money is just a resource, we only have the illusion that money is real. He demystified two misconceptions about money. In his opinion, not “Money is the root of all evil”, but the lack of money is the root of all evil. It might be true, that “Money does not bring happiness”, but without money we are not happy as well. He concluded his speech that what brings unhappiness is not money, but our greed for money.

The third speaker Jürgen delivered an informational speech about milk entitled “Milk – A White Lie?”. He posed two questions:

  • Are the cows we see in milk advertisements really happy?
  • Is the milk product really healthy?

He described how the animals are treated in the milk industry and stated some studies that prove three misconceptions about milk: makes strong bones, prevents osteoporosis and prevents overweight kids. At the end, he told us about other alternatives to milk.

Khushi gave her High Performance Leadership #2 (Presenting the Results) speech entitled “Never Say Never”.


Khushi’s Handout

She started her speech by sharing a personal story: long time ago she took over a leadership position, but in the end she was fired. She told herself,  “I will never take a job as a manager again. My skin is not tough enough, my people skills are not strong enough.” She kept her promise, until she took over the organization of the 90th anniversary.

And the anniversary was a success. Why? Because this time she had the structure of HPL manual, 2 committies and a project she was passionate about [and she is indeed passionate about it!]. When problems occurred, there was two things that helped her:

  • The vision, the core values and the mission statement
  • Respect for everyone

She concluded her speech saying that leading is learning. Take advantage of what Toastmasters is giving you. Never say never.

Word of the Day: Altruism, which means selflessness, acting and behaving in the interest of others and the belief that to do is right and proper. Examples: Shall we assume that people are motivated by altruism or self-interest?
Lesson Learned: “Before anything else, preparation is the key to success.”


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