Spa Speakers

Getting started as a club officer at Spa Speakers

New member to the committee? Not sure what to do?

Lucky you! The tutorials on this page have been created to help you get acquainted with various aspects of your new role! The content here is meant to support (and not substitute) 1-2-1 handover meetings between you and your predecessors. Ideally these handover meetings should happen soon after the officer elections at the end of April, ideally completed by end of May, and certainly before 30th June!

A lot of the tutorial content is in video format, and not all of them need to be watched by all committee officers, but quite a few do, so please do if you should! Any questions, please get in touch with your predecessor or the Immediate Past President.

Remember: This is not yet a complete set of training resources, and not meant as a substitute for 1-2-1 handover meetings.

Ok, enough chit chat. Lets go!

N.B. Don’t forget to check out your role profile by clicking here! (detailed descriptions for each role linked near end)


0. Make sure you read your Club Leadership Handbook!

Why? At the election you will have been given a physical copy of the Club Leadership Handbook. It tells you everything you need to know about being an effective officer. (And if you haven’t got it, ask for it!)

Who should read it? Every club officer. Every officer role is outlined in the document, alongside all the key responsibilities the committee collectively shares.

If you don’t have a physical copy yet, click button below for a link to a PDF copy; however a physical copy is highly recommended!

Also, it’s worth sharing the following link which outlines what club funds may or may not be used for. Click here to read.


1. Get onto a WhatsApp group

Why? WhatsApp is a really quick and convenient way to communicate with the entire committee without cluttering your email inboxes. As WhatsApp is phone based, messages and their responses are closer to real-time, which is handy for those communications just before a meeting!

Who should be added? everyone on the committee, ideally before your term starts 1st July

N.B. having such a group won’t work well unless every committee member participates in it. If there are holdouts, you may want to reconsider and stick with (cluttered) email boxes!


2. Get access to committee files via Google Drive: video tutorial

Why? To be effective, club officers need to have at their disposal the requisite resources to perform their duties. Having an up to date club calendar, success plan, meeting agenda, minutes, educational information, guidance notes on specific tasks (e.g. running a contest) and other how-to guides stored in one easily accessible place is essential not only to enable you to run the club well, but also enable your successors run a great club too. Spa Speakers use Google Drive to ensure all the cumulative wisdom from previous leaders is easily available for every new generation of officers. In summary: if you are on the committee, you need to get access to our Google drive to perform your role.

Who should read this? everyone on the committee, ideally before your term starts 1st July

Length: <10 mins

click to access Google Drive tutorial
You might be wondering why we use Google Drive rather than Dropbox to store our committee resources. The simple answer is free space! Google offers 15gb, whilst Dropbox offers a measly 2gb. Officers already using Dropbox often have already used up their personal Dropbox allowance, preventing them from accessing club files. No good!

Just because Google is bigger doesn’t necessarily solve the whole problem; when officers already using Google Drive use a signficant proportion of their personal larger 15gb allowance, they have no space left for committee files. In short, we encounter the same issue as with Dropbox.

Luckily there is a way forward: the following procedure resolves these issues.

Read on!

5 steps to getting onto the club Google Drive

  1. All officers need to download the “google backup and sync” software and install it onto their windows or apple mac laptop/desktop from this website: https://www.google.com/drive/download/backup-and-sync/
  2. Use the following account, spaspeakersresources@gmail.com, to configure the software at installation. Please ask the relevant officer from the outgoing committee for the password.
  3. When asked by the software, all users should not select syncing personal files to Google Drive (this will share personal files with the committee, which I think noone wants to do!)
  4. When asked, everyone should select syncing “Toastmasters Committee Resources” to their local computer. This option is what shares the club files onto officers’ computers.
  5. Once the above steps have been done, syncing will initiate, which simply means the files will start downloading onto your PC. As there is 1.6gb+ of data to download, you’ll need to leave your computer on whilst connected to the internet, with the back up and sync software running, for as long as it takes for a complete download of files. This is a one-off process and once done, all subsequent changes to files will sync quickly. (Warning: this process can take a long time, especially if your internet is slow)

That’s it!

When the process is complete, you will be able to amend existing club files by editing the copy now stored on your computer, provided you remain online and ensure the back up and sync software is running on your PC in the background.

Staying online and making sure the backup and sync software is running whilst you edit club files in Google Drive is super important! Make sure you check both things are true before you get editing!

Final notice: if you have a club email address (i.e. you are the treasurer, VPPR, VPE or VPM) instead of using spaspeakersresources@gmail.com as your login to access Google Drive, use your email account instead.

If you need help, please ask the relevant officer in charge of the club Google Drive.


3. Learn to use Club Central: video tutorial

Why watch? The committee will need to submit educational awards, add new members, update member contact details, keep track of progress towards the President’s Distinguished Award, keep the club officer list up-to-date and ensure club contact details and meeting scheduling are always correct. Finally, and importantly, it’s where contact details and member ids for all current members are stored. Club Central is the part of the Toastmaster international website where all the action happens. Find out how to get there and how to use it!

Who should watch this? everyone on the committee, ideally before your term starts 1st July

Length: < 13 mins

click to access Club Central tutorial

Especially important for: VPE, VPM, Treasurer, Secretary

Important: this page only appears at election time!

Please note, this very important screen, which allows you to assign next year’s committee roles, appears when you click on the officer list option in club central after May; so if you are wondering where this screen is because it’s your turn to submit the new officer list, you just have to wait a while before it becomes available! I grabbed this screen because the fact it wasn’t around most of the year confused me. It will appear when the time comes!

 


4. Get access to Spa Speakers’s email accounts: video tutorial

Why watch? dedicated inboxes have been created for committee members to conduct club business relevant to their respective offices. These emails accounts should be used rather than personal inboxes to ensure easy handover of roles between committee members, continuity over Toastmaster terms and to create an air of professionalism around Spa Speakers.

Who should watch this? the VPE, VPM, Treasurer, VPPR

Length: < 10 mins

click to access club email tutorial

5. Learn how to recruit new members: video tutorial

Why watch? To provide a high quality experience for new members joining the club, lots of things need to happen. This video explains all the steps that must be taken to create a first class experience for anyone joining the club!

Who should watch this? everyone on the committee

Length:  30 mins

click to access new member recruitment tutorial

Especially important for: VPM and Treasurer

N.B. VPM: Make sure you update the guest flyer and welcome pack to reflect the new committee members mentioned in the documents and any other details to ensure everything is up-to-date as soon as you are elected.


6. Learn how to manage the spaspeakers.co.uk website: video tutorial

Why watch? How to add and edit pages and posts, how to update the homepage sliders, add images, manage the look and feel of the website and an introduction to some core functionality that makes the site so very cool!

Who should watch this? VPPR or club webmaster

Length:  +1 hr(!)…sorry it’s so long!

click to access website management tutorial

Part 1

Part 2


7. Learn how to manage the Spa Speakers Easy-speak homepage: video tutorial

Why watch? You’ll need to keep our http://toastmasterclub.org/ page up to date with current meeting dates, venue information, accurate training materials and photos that reflect the current membership. This shows you how!

Who should watch this? VPPR or club webmaster

Length:  15 mins

click to access website management tutorial

Part 1

To deepen your knowledge of the system, there are a tonne of resources in the knowledge base section of easy-speak site. You can access it by clicking here. This should be first port of call should you encounter a task you don’t know how to tackle!


8. Setting up the room at regular meetings

Why? It’s important every member of the committee, not just the SAA, knows how to set out the room during regular meetings. This guide should be internalised by the club leaders so they can all support the SAA in making sure the room is set out professionally, and if the SAA is not around, can act as delegate

Who should read this? Everyone at the committee

Length: 5 min read!

click to access room set up tutorial

9. Completing the month-end accounts: video tutorial

Why watch? At the end of each month, the Spa Speakers account will neeed to be brought up to date so that an accurate report on the financial position of the club can be shared with fellow officers at the monthly committee meetings.  Being able to prepare robust accounts that reconcile is also essential because one month before the end of a committee’s term, an independent audit should be conducted by a club member to ensure members’ dues have been used responsibly. These videos show you how!

Who should watch this? Treasurer

Length:  1hr+

click to access month-end accounts tutorial

Before you get going, it’s worth making sure you are aware of what club funds can and cannot be used for. Here is the official guidance from Toastmasters International. click here to read.

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3


10. Plan to achieve the President’s Distinguished Award

Why? Toastmasters International award clubs that are exceptionally well run each year with  the President’s Distinguished Award, and Spa Speakers has achieved this accolade 12 times in the 14 years. We’d like each committee responsible for the club to continue this record and ensure we remain a great place for members to develop their speaking and leadership skills. Click below to find out the basic requirements and some useful tips on what to do to achieve the award.

Who should read this? Everyone at the committee

Length: 5 min read!


Official TMI officer training resources

Click here to access educational resources for incoming officers on TMI here. These are very much overviews and not specific to what you’d do at Spa Speakers. Worth checking out, but more as introduction.

If there is one resource I would definitely recommend all club officer read it’s the “Master Your Meetings” PDF book. It goes through what you should think about to create a quality meeting experience. Definitely one for any committee officer to read!


 Ask if you need help!

When you take on a committee role for the first time it can feel quite overwhelming,  so if you have any questions, please get in touch with your predecessor or the Immediate Past President. Make sure by the end of your 1-2-1 handover you feel comfortable with your new role. Remember, we want you to succeed!

(and if you can recommend how we can improve or add to this set of resources to better prepare new officers, please tell us! Email admin@spaspeakers.co.uk)

Like what you read? Share it with others!