Why “getting better in public speaking” should be your new year’s resolution

The whole concept of speaking in public sounds scary and stressful. It implies you should get in front of a group of people and speak as smoothly as you can for a reasonable time. You should not speak too long, not too short. Your speech should not be too boring, nor too dramatic. You should be credible, authentic, maybe even humorous or charismatic to get the attention of the audience and your message across. This sounds even more nerve-racking and incredibly demanding. But it should not be that difficult to become a great communicator considering that if you were born with the ability to speak, you have already a sufficient basis for public speaking 🙂



Because isn’t public speaking something we perform every day? When you ask someone where is the nearest bus stop, when you enter the doctor’s waiting room and you ask people there who was the last one, when you say “thank you” to the shop assistant, or when you speak with your colleague at the lunch break, this is all public speaking.

Public speaking is just another word for communication. And communication is the backbone of our lives. You must communicate your ideas, you must communicate to get your job, your future wife or husband, your food at the restaurant…Especially in the working world, public speaking is a fundamental skill to have and to polish. It can have an enormous impact on your career path and your level of success in your business field.communication

Like with all human skills, some people become great speakers with ease, some people need to practice a little bit more. But there is no doubt that we all should improve our communication competences.  It does not limit only to speaking, communication is also about listening, about sharing a message that interests others, about voice variety, body language etc.

If the lines “improving communication skills” resonate with you, this year 2017 is the best one to start working on it 🙂 When looking back to events in 2016, one can observe that after a quite turbulent and surprising year, communication, leadership and dialogues will play even more vital role than before.

Now the question is how to improve.

A one-sentence resolution “I want to get better at public speaking” is promising but there is a considerable risk that your goal stays on the paper. What matters more than a goal / resolution, is your daily habit.


You may start small. For instance by saying:

  • I will watch a movie and then summarize its content in 3 sentences to my friend
  • I will use the first opportunity to give a company presentation
  • I will listen actively to my colleague
  • I will stop using repetitive or redundant words and think more before saying something

Or you can put even more effort into your practice and be active in Toastmasters club, debate association, impromptu sessions, comedy stand-ups, theatre classes, presentation skills seminars, whatever appeals to you. Related to Toastmasters club, you may consider these habits:

  • I will attend meetings regularly and always take some role
  • I will deliver at least 1 prepared speech in a month
  • I will volunteer for improvisations on every meeting

It’s up to you which strategy you will choose to improve your communication skills. Important is what you do on a regular basis.

For the new year 2017 – may your habits help to boost your skills 🙂



Best of the best from July till September

The nostalgic autumn is here and it’s the best time to recall our nice memories from the summer. Although there was summer holiday and officially no school, we learned so many inspiring things that it would be a shame not to share them with more people. A great point about Toastmasters is that one can learn a lot and one can teach others a lot as well:)

Best of the best ideas from our speeches

  • The best way to show your interest is to pay attention (The essence of presence by Mirec)
  • It is the present where you shape your destiny (The essence of presence by Mirec)


  • Sometimes the more you do, the less you achieve. Ask yourself a question – am I investing in the right opportunities? Distinguish the vital opportunities from too many trivial activities. (The Art of Essentialism by Veronika)


  • Sometimes it is not the world you have to change, but only your point of view (The Point of View by Eva).


  • People living in primitive society used to talk a lot about food, because they had lack of it. Now we talk a lot about sex – what does this imply? (Just do it by Robo)just-do-it


One of the regular activities of Toastmasters clubs is to organize a club contest. This time we organized a contest in humorous speeches and improvisations (or in Toastmasters’s jargon – table topics).

Two brave and really advanced speakers Peter and Robo delivered their hilarious speeches that filled the room with wonderful atmosphere and made everyone laugh! One would never assumed that speeches with names as “Death” and “Get your facts” could be full of quality jokes and remarks:)

The whole meeting was smoothly moderated by Bruno and his quick-witted comments enhanced the overall entertaining evening. After the session of prepared speeches and interview with the contestants followed the “sweat-causing” part – improvisations, when six people did not know the topic in advance and they had to come up with a coherent short speech.

We had a good time on positive vibes and we are proud that Peter and Robo will represent our club in the bigger contest taking place in Zilina in October. Let’s see how they will do and keep our fingers crossed for them:) Stay tuned for the next big news!

Huge congrats!


Hilarious winners – Robo as the Best Table Topics Speaker, Peter as the Best Speaker and Bruno the moderator:)


Table Topics contestants

Toastmasters Bratislava clubbin’

One of the goals of incumbent club officers is to support the club culture. It means that we would like to enable the TMBA members and fans to get to know each other better. Being a Toastmaster does not have to limit to activities such as attending regular TM meetings or contests. That’ s why we sometimes go for drinks or tea after the meeting or we organize a totally different activity from speaking.

The very first “offsite” activity or simply named “TMBA clubbing” was shooting 🙂


Laser warriors in action

Some food for thought – one of the basic rule in this game to follow is this one: “Lasers only go where you aim them…” Aim well and don’t be afraid to shoot:) Like in laser game, your shots are unlimited, but your time is not.


Speak Up!

…at the Public Speaking Contest – Toastmasters

23. February 2013 (Saturday)

in Bratislava, Slovakia

Venue: Auditorium of the University of Economics

This is the 4th year this incredible contest will be held – giving everybody, who wants to speak in front of the audience, to do so. No matter if you are a born speaker or a beginner. Here, you can try for yourself if you can deliver a speech that engages the audience.

Check out more

Máme tvoju prácu! Ak ju chceš dones životopis na Národné Dni Kariéry!

Členovia našich klubov predstavia výhody Toastmasters a predvedú ukážkové stretnutie klubu 8. marca 2012 (štvrtok) od 13:30 do 15:00 pre návštevníkov veľtrhu práce Národné Dni Kariéry.

V dňoch 8. – 9. marca sa v Bratislave už po sedemnásty raz uskutoční najväčší veľtrh práce zameraný na študentov a absolventov vysokých škôl, Národné Dni Kariéry (NDK). Organizátor podujatia, AIESEC, sa po úspešnom nultom ročníku rozhodol usporiadať ďalší ročník podujatia aj v metropole východu, a to 22. marca v Hoteli Centrum v Košiciach.

„Tohtoročný projekt sa nesie sloganom Máme tvoju prácu! Ak ju chceš prines svoj životopis na NDK! V dnešnej dobe je pre mladého človeka náročné nájsť si prácu po ukončení štúdia, keďže konkurencia je vysoká a na trhu práce výrazne prevláda dopyt nad ponukou. Projekt Národné Dni Kariéry dáva účastníkom príležitosť dostať sa do kontaktu so zamestnávateľmi a spraviť prvý krok – priniesť svoj životopis. Mladý človek má jedinečnú šancu zistiť, aká je aktuálna ponuka práce na trhu a začať svoju cestu za úspešnou kariérou,“ hovorí Stela Beslerová, projektová manažérka podujatia.

NDK sa koná pod záštitou Ministerstva práce, sociálnych vecí a rodiny a primátora mesta Košice. Odborným garantom sprievodného programu podujatia je líder na trhu v poskytovaní personálnych služieb v strednej a východnej Európe, spoločnosť Trenkwalder. Branislav Holík, Hiring Manager Trenkwalder hovorí:

„NDK je podujatie venované predovšetkým študentom a absolventom VŠ, ktorí sú vo všeobecnosti významnou a veľmi zaujímavou súčasťou pracovného trhu. Je to akási kontinuálna skupina, ktorá sa každý rok v tom istom čase na trhu práce objavuje v podobe nových čerstvých absolventov, ktorí sú, alebo by mali byť pripravení prežiť v praxi. Našou úlohou je týmto ľuďom odovzdávať všetky potrebné vedomosti, zručnosti a rozvíjať ich kvality na to, aby jedného dňa mohli oni vychovať novú „kontinuálnu skupinu“.“

Podujatie ponúka firmám priamy kontakt s potencionálnymi zamestnancami. Ide o aktívnych a ambicióznych ľudí so zameraním na ekonómiu, manažment, marketing alebo IT. Spoločnostiam sa tak ponúka príležitosť osloviť talentovaných študentov a interaktívne prezentovať svoju spoločnosť.

Účastníci majú unikátnu príležitosť stretnúť sa s predstaviteľmi spoločností, nájsť si prácu a získať informácie o budúcom zamestnávateľovi, kontakty na personalistov či nadviazanie spolupráce so spoločnosťami v oblasti stáží a diplomových prác. K získaniu odborných vedomostí im pomáha sprievodný program. Novinkou tohto ročníka je rozdelenie programu do štyroch blokov pripravovaných v spolupráci so spoločnosťami v odboroch ekonómia, marketing, IT a technológia. V jednotlivých blokoch budú účastníci okrem odborných prednášok súčasťou riešenia prípadových štúdií, priamo pod vedením odborníkov z praxe. V rámci NDK 2012 sa predstaví aj alternatívna kariérna cesta „Rozbehni sa!“. Účastníkom sa predstavia 10 podnikatelia, ktorí sa rozbiehali už počas školy a začínali s „holou riťou”, úplne od nuly.

Kvalita, tradícia a prestížne slovenské spoločnosti sú tu aj pre Vás. Ponúka ich najväčší veľtrh práce pre mladých na Slovensku.

Viac informácií na: www.ndk.sk

Založenie klubu „Slovenskí Toastmasters“ v Bratislave

„Slovenskí Toastmasters“ je druhým klubom tohto druhu na Slovensku. Celosvetovo existuje viac ako 12.500 klubov v 113 krajinách združujúcich viac ako 250.000 členov.

Možnosť rozvoja komunikačných zručností v slovenskom jazyku

„Toastmasters Bratislava“ bol prvým klubom na Slovensku, ktorý ponúkal svojim členom rozvoj komunikačných a vodcovských zručností, komunikácia  v ňom prebieha v angličtine.

Na základe ohlasov členova a priaznivcov Toastmasters bola vytvorená možnosť zdokonaľovať svoje komunikačné, prezentačné a vodcovské zručnosti aj v slovenskom jazyku. Preto založenie druhého klubu, tentoraz v slovenčine bolo logickým krokom.

Klub „Slovenskí Toastmasters“, sa od začiatku teší veľkej priazni členov i prichádzajúcich hostí. Obidva kluby sú súčasťou medzinárodnej organizácie Toastmasters International, ktorá od svojho skromného vzniku v roku 1924 dodnes vzrástla na viac než 12 500 klubov s približne 260 000 členmi v 113 krajinách sveta.

Členovia a hostia klubu Slovenskí Toastmasters sa stretávajú pravidelne každý párny týždeň vo štvrtok o 19:00 hod. v kaviarni Coffee&Co. na Panónskej ceste 17 v bratislavskej Petržalke, v budove City University.

Bližšie informácie nájdete na http://slovenski.toastmasters.sk


Area D1 Spring Conference Programme

Preparations are in hand for a wonderful Spring Area Conference, to be held this Saturday, 9th April, registration from 1.00 p.m. onwards at the Radisson Blu Beke Hotel, Terez krt. 43 in Budapest. With over 85 expected to attend the Conference itself and 40 to the buffet it promises to be a remarkable event.


Tickets for the Conference itself will be on sale on the day, price 3000 HUF.

Olga Durakova givea s workshop on “Online marketing for Toastmasters Clubs”. Olga is President of the Bratislava Toastmasters Club



A key feature of the day will be four workshops on various aspects of public speaking and club management. We have already featured those offered by Charlie LaFond (Vienna), Imre Remenyi (Vienna) and Mary Murphy (Budapest). Here we take a look at the workshop to be offered by Olga Durakova on Online marketing for Toastmasters Clubs. With elections for Club Officers upcoming, this is an opportunity for those of you considering a leadership role to gain some insight into what this involves. Olga is a fantastic speaker and an experienced Club Officer. Bratislava is tipped to outstrip all other European clubs in the Distinguished Club Programme, so Olga clearly knows a thing or two about getting things moving and getting people motivated.


In addition to contestants from Vienna, our contest master, Leopold Ziegler (Vienna) and our keynote speaker, Christian Biever (Vienna), we are pleased to announce that we are expecting a large party of members from Bratislava. This will be a wonderful occasion and a great opportunity to forge new links of cooperation between Clubs in our Area.

Results of the 2nd Informal Central European Speech Contest

On Saturday we have once again shown that it is possible to create a friendly and positive learning environment while still achieving excellent results. You should see all the performers on the stage, taking control over their fears and sharing with us their ideas and opinions.

While still being impressed by the quality of the whole event that certainly reflected the hard work put into preparation of the venue, we only can thank to all the participants – contestants, judges, support team, not to forget our precious audience.

Special thanks goes to all the participants that had to travel for hours just be a part of the wonderful gathering. Toastmasters Zagreb, Wiener Toastmasters Rhetorik Klub, Vienna Speakers ClubVienna Toastmasters Club 551Budapest Toastmasters, Morgan Stanley Toastmasters Club (Budapest).

For those who would love to see at least a part of the happening, feel free to follow up on the presentation prepared by one of our most active members – Robo Horváth. You can watch it here…
YouTube Preview Image

Evaluation Contest Winners

Target Speaker – Kubo Grznárik (Toastmasters Bratislava)
1st place Katka Kovalčíková (Toastmasters Bratislava)
2nd place Leo Ziegler (Wiener Toastmasters Rhetorik Klub)
3rd place Michal Uličný (Toastmasters Bratislava)

Table Topics Contest Winners

1st place Oľga Duráková (Toastmasters Bratislava)
2nd place Martin Huba (Toastmasters Bratislava)
3rd place Kubo Grznarik (Toastmasters Bratislava)

International Speech Contest Winners

1st place Katka Kovalčíková (Toastmasters Bratislava)
2nd place Michal Uličný (Toastmasters Bratislava)
3rd place Hans Peterson (Budapest Toastmasters)

Toastmasters take part in HR conference in Bratislava

Our founder, Klaus Hammer will present the idea of Toastmasters to HR audience for the first time in history on Slovak grounds.

With the presentation titled “Peer coaching = Training 2.0 / The future of employee development” he will present the idea of mutual people development within organizations and its  potential application to business world and companies’ training and development programs.

Peer coaching is an effective and cost-efficient way to enable employees develop their skills and abilities and help the gain most of their potential.  It is based on creating positive and supportive environment where people are motivating each other to step out of their comfort zone and explore and their hidden qualities. It is proven that people driven by their self-motivation and willinges to learn and develop are the pillars of successful organizations.

The presentation will be held on February 17, 2011 at 09:15 in the HR&Management conference in Incheba Expo Bratislava. More details on http://www.hrmanagement.sk/program

2nd Informal Central European Speech Contest

Toastmasters Bratislava is happy to announce the II. Informal Central European Speech Contest that will be held on Saturday, 26th February 2011, starting at 13:00. The venue for this contest is set at “Klub Valčík” on Pokolibská street 1 in Bratislava. (Map here)

All Toastmasters club in Central Europe are invited to send their best speakers to compete in three main categories:

  • International Speech Contest – prepared 5-7 minute presentations
  • Evaluation Contest – the art of giving proper feedback
  • Table Topics Contest – impromptu speeches on a topic that the speaker gets to know only seconds before the actual performance

Important details

You can find more information on the last year’s contest in this article