In toastmaster one of the most important part of the meeting is the Evaluations. As any skill is developed and improved by practice and feedback. In Toastmaster the feedback is called the evaluations.
Although evaluations mainly consist of evaluating the speaking capabilities of others, it teaches or enhances the skills we need to learn which is required in all aspects of your life. You will become a more attentive and receptive listener, a more creative and critical thinker, and a more effective and beneficial ally.
ART OF EVALUATING
The purpose as an evaluator is to provided honest reaction in a constructive manned to the person’s effort. Remember when you evaluate, you are simply giving your own reaction to the person’s speaking or leadership efforts. An evaluation is an opinion, nothing more. This opinion should mention the effect on you, what the speaker or leader did well, areas where the speaker or leader could improve, and specific recommendations for improvement.
Keep in mind that you cannot change the person’s behaviour or force the person to accept your ideas and suggested improvements. You shouldn’t hurt their sentiments. Your recommendation should be articulated in a way that they can take it in positive sense. That is the art of evaluations.
Outside the Toastmasters you are required to evaluate persons in all the spheres of life, be it your sub-ordinate, your colleague, your senior on in your house your partner or kids. By evaluating we basically communicate them our way of thinking. But we have to remember that everyone of them have their own behaviour and sentiments. The moment we hurt them, they will not co-operate as a result our leadership skill is hampered. One of the most important characteristics of great leaders is that they can get the work done from you by making you feel happy. This is the art we learn and practice at Evaluations.
BENEFITS OF EVALUATING
In Toastmasters, we evaluate each other in order to gain a benefit. The process of evaluation can benefit the Speaker, the Evaluator, and the club itself. If evaluation is effective and beneficial, it holds benefits for Speakers, their Evaluators, and for the club itself.
Benefits for the Speaker
- provides the feedback needed for learning
- confers specific suggestions for improvement
- recognizes the Speaker’s efforts and accomplishments
- motivates the Speaker to further efforts
- enhances the Speaker’s self-esteem
Benefits for the Evaluator
- provides a vehicle for the Evaluator to help others
- develops a positive, sympathetic attitude in the Evaluator
- cultivates positive relationships between club members
- deepens the Evaluator’s listening skills
- exercises the Evaluator in impromptu speaking
Benefits for the Club
- cultivates in the Club a high degree of excellence in speaking, leading, and serving
- skilled speakers and evaluators then serve as role models for club members
- creates a positive climate in the Club
- club members can take pride in their growth and be inspired to do even better
- with a high degree of satisfaction in the club, members will tend to continue their participation and deepen their commitment.
In the next article we will be looking into the steps and tips of evaluating and delivering evaluations.