An evening of personal transformations


On Wednesday, 21st June, a warm estival evening coinciding with the summer solstice, Munich Prostmasters gathered to thank the outgoing Officers team and welcome the incoming team.

Dhruba led the audience through our warm-up session, namely Table topics, exploiting the “estival” theme (incidentally, the word of the day which means ‘related to the summer’) inviting members and guests to share their views or experiences related to the summer.
Three speeches filled our program on this estival evening, all somewhat revolving around the topics of personal transformation. Andreas, who completed Project 2 of the Competent Communicator Manual, fulfilled his objectives of “Organize your speech” into a solid structure that presented his professional transformation from civil servant in the German Army to tax specialist in the private sector, as well as his personal journey exploring meditation to increase well-being and focus. His speech was followed by that of Armin Hierstetter, who shared a new aspect of his journey towards becoming an entrepreneur. Armin’s goal was to “Inspire the audience” and we believe he was quite convincing, perhaps sparking some new vocations amongst attendees? Last but certainly not least, we heard the fourth and final part of Mel´s keynote speech to a group of IT consultants. Mel´s natural command of rhetoric and charisma resulted in a speech that was entertaining, inspiring and occasionally thought-provoking. We even learned some fun facts along the way, for instance: Did you know who was the wedding photographer at Larry Ellison´s wedding? Hint: it wasn´t Annie Leibowitz. Read on to find out more…

After the break, our evaluators shared their precious feedback to our speakers. Two of the speakers had asked for honest, almost ‘tough’ feedback. Although they were given some ideas on how to further improve the quality of their speech or delivery, an important suggestion was made by our surprise guest, “Evaluators’ evaluator” Christopher Magyar (a.k.a. as our “Rolls Royce of a Toastmaster”). The suggestion was to take in the ‘constructive feedback’ of course but more importantly to focus on what we do well, something that can truly be seen and appreciated when we look at videos of our own speeches. And remember: “Feedback is the Breakfast of Champions”! Christopher also rightly pointed out that many speakers – prepared or impromptu speeches alike – have perhaps dropped their guard with time-management and the use cringe worthy filler words such as “Ah”, “Um”, “So”, which ought to be dramatically reduced in our next meetings to uphold our standards. Shall we give it a try? We don´t want to antagonize our founding father, we want to make him proud!

We were also happy to see some new faces at our meeting: four guests – or rather two, since we have two new club members! Welcome, Irina and Lorenz! We look forward to hearing your speeches in the near future!

If you are still guessing who was the illustrious photographer at Larry Ellison’s wedding: no, it wasn’t Peter Lindbergh either (but do go see the Lindbergh exhibit at Kunsthalle, it is well worth it!). The answer is… Steve Jobs! Who knew?

We welcome your feedback, comments, ideas and suggestions… drop us a line or a comment!

Here’s wishing all our members and readers a productive, successful, and happy couple of weeks until our next meeting on July 5th. We have another good lineup of speeches you don’t want to miss!

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