Corporate Clubs in Europe
Did you realize that almost 30% of Toastmasters clubs in the world are Corporate clubs? Most of them are in the USA, that’s for sure, but there is a growing tendency in Europe for companies to understand that their employees would benefit from the skills we learn at Toastmasters.
So here it is a wonderful opportunity for District 59 to boost:
- The number of clubs in the District
- Leadership awards for our Members
- Our visibility in the business world
- Career opportunities for our Members.
Corporate Clubs are not born overnight (even if in Paris, we have a new corporate club which came into existence… almost by itself!) *
But helping to create a Corporate Club can be a most interesting experience for Toastmasters, as well as providing them with a great opportunity for a HPL project.
Here it is a wonderful opportunity for District 59 to boost!
STEP 1: Identifying Target Corporations
To create a Corporate Club, begin by making a list of the companies that you are familiar with (perhaps your own employer, or that of another member). We recommend that you target relatively big companies, since, for a Corporate Club to survive over a long-term, we need to have at least 200 employees on the same site. Then…. once a possible candidate corporation has been identified… Toastmasters need to start thinking like a corporate person! Be business-like in all your contacts with the company, and share ideas with your fellow members.
STEP 2: Set an interview with key players in the Corporations
Make an appointment with decision makers, and make sure that you have a brief presentation prepared, in true Toastmaster style. Leave documents (I will be delighted to send you some!), and aim to leave with a date upon which you will be able to organise a Demo meeting. During your discussion, make sure that you stress advantages to the company of their employees sharpening up their Presentation and Leadership skills.
Don’t stress the “club” aspect: it makes Toastmasters sound like a social opportunity, but rather talk about our wonderful educational programme, the learning approach, the feedback model, leadership and positive attitude. Ask if the Corporation would be willing to finance the club (it is customary to do so), and if they would consider giving a pay rise or a bonus to members who reach Toastmasters Awards. Contact the person you met after a maximum of 2 weeks to see if they have made a decision, or need more information.
STEP 3: Demo Meeting
Make sure you organise a highly professional event: enrol other Toastmasters to help you. Look like the corporation you are going to: young people go to young style corporations… make sure you have understood their demographics, and aim to match them. Make the meeting easy for the corporation contact by sending him or her promotional material to circulate, and have fellow Toastmasters to participate and take on various roles on the day. Print a professional looking programme! And make it fun! (You already know how to do that!)
STEP 4: Keep in touch!
For the Corporate Club to succeed, they must have at least 25 members at all times. You can help them to maintain good membership by remembering to invite them to Officer Training and all Area, Division and District Events. Provide support to the club, up to and after the Chartering process.
Launching a Corporate Club is a wonderful opportunity for you to have a privileged contact with the world of business. You will certainly meet a lot of interesting people and learn a lot yourself! And… you will be conducting great networking.
If you would like a helping hand in organising a Corporate Club, or even a Corporate Summit – an event where you invite several Corporations at the same time – or want to know how to help flagging Corporate Clubs, please don’t hesitate to contact me, Carol BAUSOR, Assistant to District Club Growth Director, in Charge of Corporate Clubs: email@example.com.
Some countries seem to be better than others in creating and running Corporate Clubs: why don’t we work together to share our skills and… get more Corporate Clubs launched in District 59!
* The Paris Club QUAI D’ORSAY was nonetheless helped into existence by Sylvie KLAJMAN and her team. Several people working here attended Toastmasters club meetings, and liked them so much that they decided to set up their own club.
Carol Bausor (CarolToastmasters)
Club Growth Director Assistant for Corporate Clubs