August 31, 2018
[28:17] In this episode we speak on a more serious note – the topic of Mental Health. Our guest is Mona Cooley, family support advocate and founder of Cool Family Solutions, Calgary, Canada. She is also a Distinguished Toastmaster, Past District 42 Governor and regular guest on Toastcaster.
Mona has taken leadership in her community with respect to Mental Health. Not only is she a subject matter expert, her family has also struggled with it. Mental Health is everywhere and it affects people young and old and from all walks of life. All you have to do is turn on the news – people are stricken with anxiety, depression and death by suicide has gone out of control. Kate Spade, Anthony Bourdain, Rick Genest (Zombie Boy) are just a few who have taken their lives.
Mona says families are struggling and don’t know what to do adding that things can and are being done – and one way is through having honest conversations. In this podcast, Mona talks about this serious subject, shares some of her stories including one that saved a life and offers some thoughts on what people can do.
Our conversation with Mona is timely. According to a recent article in the Guardian (U.K.) Lady Gaga, had cast her friend Genest in her Born This Way video and wrote on Twitter. ”The suicide…is beyond devastating. We have to work harder to change the culture, bring mental health to the forefront and erase the stigma that we can’t talk about it. If you are suffering, call a friend or family today. We must save each other.”
You can reach Mona at Cool Family Solutions.com. There you can also find a great resource page.
August 14, 2018
[28:46] In the 100th episode of Toastcaster, we have a look back to our humble beginnings; some discoveries and lessons learned over 100 episodes. We also invite back Mona Cooley, Founder, Cool Family Solutions, Past Toastmasters District 42 Governor from Calgary, AB and first guest for the inaugural episode 1 recorded back in 2006 when podcasting was in its infancy and its technology still crude.
We hear how the podcast started as a High Performance Leadership Project (HPL) for Toastmasters. And with 100 episodes, over 220,000 downloads and 2,000,000 feed hits later, the podcast now serves as a resource not only for the Toastmasters Community, but for anyone who wants to build their confidence and improve both their communication and leadership skills.
We also hear how both Toastcaster Host Greg Gazin and Mona were excited yet nervous about taking on the project; some of the things they’ve learned about podcasting, the interview process and things they learned about themselves. You’ll hear why the audio format is good and get an insight on Greg’s vision for the podcast and what you can forward to in the future as the podcast evolves.
As you listen, you’ll pick up a few tips and tricks about preparing and conducting interviews, especially the importance of asking the right questions, finding focus and preparing for nervous guests.
And finally, thanks to you, all our listeners for tuning in for every episode and to all the suggestions and feedback you’ve given us. We hope you continue to enjoy the Toastcaster Podcast.
July 31, 2018
[31:08] In this episode we see a little switch as host Greg Gazin takes the other side of the mic and interviewed by guest host Ryan Levesque co-host of the Toastmasters Podcast. Motivated by reading the book, Ryan takes the host chair and gets Greg to come clean to finally speak in detail about his 1st book, Corey OutSMARTs the Butterflies.
Greg shares with Ryan a little about what his book is about and how he stumbled upon the idea and what and who inspired him to take on the project which lead him to find a new passion - writing for a young readers. Ryan gets Greg to pull back the the curtain to talk about his shy humble beginnings (long before he joined Toastmasters) but also what he learned about his journey, the writing process, the illustrations and what he’d do differently the next time. You’ll also here how it’s changed him and what people of all ages can learn or take away from reading the book including a glimpse into the book’s SMART model (not the one you’re thinking about).
Ryan also give his take on the book and how he feels it can help his young daughter.
There’s also a book give-away, but you’ll have to listen to the podcast to find out more.
Categories: Public Speaking, Confidence, Youth Leadership, ESL
May 1, 2018
[30:59] Presentations and speeches way to long? Too short? In this episode Greg speaks with Freddi Dogterom DTM, AS from Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada who offers up some serious lessons on crafting your speech or presentation. She also shares insights and practical takeaways on the perils, pain and passion of editing, in particular when timing is of the essence - one way, building your speech like LEGO.
Freddi is a Distinguished Toastmaster, Accredited Speaker (AS) and professional speaker for more than 20 years delivering keynotes, workshops, professional development and train the trainer sessions. She also has over 30 years experience helping people build their lives, careers and retirement futures.
January 31, 2018
[10:49] For whatever reason, over 80% of New Year's resolutions fail within the 1st two weeks of February. Perhaps we're going about this all wrong. In this episode your host Greg Gazin shares a personal journey that shows perhaps why we might be more successful if we create visions rather that resolutions.
November 30, 2017
[22:32] Impromptu speaking is a great skill to have and you never know where it can be useful. In Toastmasters the practice of this type of speaking is called Table Topics. In this episode we speak with Blaine Zuk, ACG, ALB , who took home top honours at the District 99 Table Topics Contest held recently in Prince Albert, Saskatchewan, Canada.
Zuk, a nine-year member of Dawnbreakers Toastmasters in Edmonton, has MBA and PMP designations and is a Project Manager and Change Manager in the healthcare informatics field. He grew up and currently lives on a farm, bringing stories of his work and life experience into his speeches
He shares with us his experience competing in the contest, talks about the Table Topics competition question and his thought process on how he went about answering it. He also gives us some insight on impromptu speaking and tips on how you can do better at Table Topics at your club, work or in any social situation.
July 29, 2017
[20:38] Julia Ewing joins Greg to share some communication nuggets with the audience focussing on delivering your message - whether it be good news, bad news or just information. Julia hails from Saskatoon, Canada where's she's both a community developement professional and business educator, holding an undergraduate degree in human ecology, with a masters in business.
Julia attended Greg's educational on Podcasting and Podcast Interviews at a recent District 99 Toastmasters Convention in Edmonton. Her name was selected from over 60 people who were willing to offer Greg feedback on his session in exchange for the possibility of an exclusive one-on-one opportunty to be either a guest or a co-host on an upcoming show. This is Julia's podcast debut.
June 30, 2017
[19:01] Using a Juice Box as metaphor for Toastmasters Club Officers is the brainchild of Rebecca Cuthbertson Hulst, ACS, ALB. Rebecca has been a Toastmaster since Jan 2014 and just finishing her year as Area Director for District 99, D29 in Edmonton, Canada
Rebecca is also a Registered Collaborative Family Lawyer, a Mediator, and a lawyer for children.
When I stumbled across her speech "Juice Box," delivered in a form of a toast, there was no doubt that she would have to share this and tell her story behind it on our podcast. You’ll have to listen in to find out more.
May 31, 2017
[18:41] Sometimes employers do not know or are unaware of the value of Toastmasters or any other Leadership and Communications training for their employees. Other times they may stress the need without really explaining their full value.
In this episode Greg speaks with Marc Haine
, DTM, a former District 42 PRM, keynote speaker, corporate trainer and business consultant specializing in the Hospitality industry.
Marc developed resource materials that can be shared with employers to help them understand using real-world tie-ins what’s in it for everyone and why their teams should embrace training - more specifically, Toastmasters.
May 19, 2017
[31:07] When Toastmasters Districts experience tremendous growth, approaching 300 clubs, they get a little too big to manage, often resulting in reduced quality of service to the members, so around that time, Toastmasters International encourages Districts to consider Reformation, i.e. splitting into two or more Districts.
In this episode we speak with Toastmasters Past International Director Ken Tanner, DTM from Edmonton, Canada, a Toastmasters since 1975, who chaired the D42 Reformation committee and oversaw the reformation of D42 into D42 and D99 starting with the idea phase in 2014 to completion July 2016 and beyond.
Ken shares with us how the process of this huge undertaking works and why it’s necessary. He illustrates the benefits to members, enlightening us with many of the tasks that need to be done, who is involved, what they need to do and how everyone is affected by them.
Of course, as a Toastmaster Ken also shares some of the skills necessary to complete the project, but also what communication and leadership skills can be gained and what he learned from participating and leading this high performance project. Ken can be reached at Ken.Tanner@d99tm.org
April 30, 2017
[27:22] Mike Raffety, DTM, PID is very active on both the Official Toastmasters Facebook page and LinkedIn group answering many Toastmasters related questions. So we reached out to Mike in Chicago and asked him to give us his take on the Toastmasters Club Myths in the Toastmasters International April 2017 Leader Letter as well as a few other club, contest and speech myths he covered in a 2015 blog post at MikeRaffety.com. Even experienced Toastmasters may be surprised about some things many thought to be true, are simply not.
April 1, 2017
[07:08] In this episode Greg tells the story of the origin of April Fool's Day. Greg was recently the Toastmaster of the Day at his home club, New Entrepreneurs and the theme was April Fool's Day. After researching the topic, Greg perhaps over-prepared his opening remarks and although a little lengthy, they were well received by the members.
As a result, when Greg went home, he expanded on what he had said and wrote an article that was published at Troy Media. Then he decided to make a podcast of the article which is what you'll hear. Enjoy.
March 19, 2017
[29:15] In this episode we speak with Naomi Takeuchi, DTM, PDG, President and CEO 1000 Cranes, LLC. Naomi shares with us some of her Toastmaster travel adventures, visiting and speaking at clubs around the world and offering some insight, tips and encouragement to check out clubs, conferences or even have lunch and connect with other Toastmasters at their travel destinations.
Naomi is a consultant to non-profits and leadership development trainer who recently moved from Charlotte, North Carolina to Santa Rosa, California. She travels extensively for both personal travel and business and over the years visiting places like Australia, Canada, China, India, UK, Qatar and also New Zealand, where she is now also a dual member, creating an international network of colleagues and friends through Toastmasters. In fact, the title of this episode is inspired by her contribution, “Your International Network Awaits!” in the book Heart of a Toastmaster (page 51), an anthology of stories curated by Sheryl Roush.
February 28, 2017
[08:03] As Toastmasters we often use USB sticks with other people's computers or often they use ours. No surprise, there is always a threat of viruses and other nasties. The truth is some are impossible to detect or eradicate while the conmputer is active. This is where FixMeStick comes in. Created in Montreal, Canada, it's a self-propelled virus removal system that runs from a thumb drive independant of your PCs or Mac's OS. It's a must have for all computer users. Listen to hear more.
January 31, 2017
[19:26] Toastcaster Podcast is celebrating its 10th Anniversary. In this episode Greg grabs the mic and takes an impromptu journey back a decade to its humble beginnings starting from the pilot episode featuring then District 42 Governor Mona Cooley, DTM.
What started as an idea in 2006 for an HPL (High Performance Leadership) project has blossomed into 77 episodes, almost 200K downloads and 1.5M feed hits and counting.
You'll hear how Toastcaster was conceived and get highlights from a number of the episodes and some of the people Greg has interviewed.
Greg will also share what he's learned from this process and how it's changed him and how he now looks at podcasting.
A huge thanks to all those that helped make it happen and for all the listeners for tuning in.
Happy Birthday Toastcaster Podcast
October 31, 2016
[26:51] We accumulate all kinds of digital stuff but Visual Productivity expert and regular guest Kevin Achtzener tells us once and awhile we need to do a content audit. Even though content is King as some say and drive space is cheap these days, we need to review our digital clutter. Perhaps it's outdated, no longer relevant or represents who we are. And as Toastmasters as we progress, some of the old content no longer reflects our skill level. Kevin shares his experience and gives us tips and tricks as to what you can do with your content for yourself and your Toastmasters Club. You may be amazed that sometimes you can re-purpose it rather than delete it.
September 29, 2016
[19:15] In this episode we speak to Toastmasters International Immediate Past President Jim Kokocki, DTM, from New Brunswick, Canada. We learn a little about his Toastmasters journey including his year as President, an insight on leadership and maybe a sneak peek at his Keynote and Plenary session he'll be presenting at the inaugural Fall Conference for the newly created District 99 to be held in Sherwood Park, Alberta, Canada. Oct 21-22, 2016. If you are interested in attending, check out the D99tm.org Fall 2016 Conference Page.
August 30, 2016
[30:05] Privacy is something we may not think about as a concern when it comes to Toastmasters. Our guest is Jean Eaton of Information Managers a practical privacy coach and expert in many disciplines including Privacy Management and Legislation. As a former Toastmaster Jean explains what privacy means and offers up some best practices,valuable tips and shares what Clubs and club leaders can do to prevent a breach. Listeners can also download her 10 Key Steps to Prevent a Privacy Breach.
August 19, 2016
[42:40] This episode we learn about the Art of Competing with Russ Dantu, 6x District Speech Contest winner & 2015 WCPS Finalist and Lance Miller, 9x District winner and 2005 World Champion of Public Speaking. Lance coached Russ for last year's event. You'll hear them share that experience, competing tips and give us a glimpse of The Art of Competing, their new and already popular CD, which can be found at LanceMillerSpeaks.com or RussDantu.com.
July 21, 2016
[27:32] Russ Dantu, District 42, Calgary, Canada continues his journey to the World Championship of Public Speaking semi-final and then on to the finals in Las Vegas. He takes us through his experience after winning at District and on to the finals and all his exciting trials and tribulations along the way. This is a continuation of Episode 57.
July 9, 2016
[22:26] Rick Lauber is the Best Selling Author of Caregiver's Guide for Canadians, The Successful Caregiver’s Guide (USA) and a contributor in two Chicken Soup for the Soul books. A former Toastmaster with New Entrepreneurs in Edmonton Canada, Rick shares why he joined Toastmasters, how it helped him and how it can help budding authors. He also offers a few tips on using your Toastmaster skills to help promote your book. Rick can be reached at RickLauber.com.
June 13, 2016
[27:46] Ummo App is your personalized speech coach & crutch-word finder developed at Harvard University. Greg speaks with two of its developers from Dehli, India and the Bay Area in California, Anshul Bhagi and Sam Li who tell us what the app's about; how they developed it and how IBM's Watson plays a role. They also tell us how you can use it to analyze and improve your speaking skills and share how Boston Toastmasters have been involved and what the future has in store for the app.
May 30, 2016
[07:13] Smartphones & Tablets have 10x the bacteria of your toilet seat. Whoosh! Dragon's Den approved is a cool product that not only cleans, it disinfects and safe enough to spray in your mouth. In this episode, Greg puts Whoosh! to the test. You can also read the review at CanoeTech Blog. (Photos courtesy Whoosh!)
May 14, 2016
[07:43] The Toastmaster Magazine is a valuable resource both in print and tablet versions. In this episode Greg gives us a little reminder as to why it's a good idea to check out either or both on a regular basis and let you in on a secret as to how the Official Toastmasters Podcast and on occasion Toastcaster get subjects for podcast interviews.