“Why did you join Toastmasters?”
Do you remember? Was it to gain communication skills? Or was it to polish your leadership skills? Or was it to network? Or was it something entirely different?
Do you have it written somewhere? If no, then right away take a piece of paper and jot it down, and if your answer is yes, then you have already crossed a major hurdle towards becoming an excellent communicator and great leader.
Toastmasters is a platform where you can learn and grow like nowhere else. You just need to know what you want to learn. You just need to know where you want to see yourself after a while. When I say this, I don’t mean it in a generic sense. You need to know more than just “I want to be a great speaker”. You will have to define “great speaker” in a tangible way.
For example, your reason can be as simple as delivering a 5-7-minute speech without fumbling or making any grammatical errors. Or it can be learning to deliver a 20-40 minutes keynote that inspires the audience. Or it can be learning to motivate your teammates so that they effectively carry out the assigned tasks.
After that, you need to further break down your ultimate aim into achievable targets with proper deadlines. For example, if your ultimate aim is to motivate your teammates, you might first want to learn understanding the motivation level of your teammates; then you might want to learn phrasing sentences in a motivating manner. After that, you might want to learn the use of body language for it and so on.
After that, you need to keep checking periodically if you are able to meet the set deadlines. If not, then you need to tweak the plan a bit to accommodate the additional time you need to complete that target before starting with the other.
Well, enough talks about how you can gain benefits. You must already be wondering how am I going to justify the title? Well, here it goes. You see, senior Toastmasters will give you more than 100 reasons for renewing your membership. Those reasons are true as well. But even if they are true, do they really help you?
You should renew for the goal that you are yet to achieve. This goal can be learning something new or even imparting your knowledge to new Toastmasters. But this goal should be the reason you renew! If you don’t have one such goal or never even thought about it, find one immediately before you renew. That’s your reason to renew.