Since the month of August of the past year, our employees had one more reason to anticipate coming to work. Every month, our Bar was the meeting place for our colleagues hoping to become public speaking enthusiasts, led by experienced Toastmasters mentors – Venedict Strisca, Nadejda Mocanu, and Diana Lazar. Every meeting implied that participants got out of their comfort zone a bit more, held more complex speeches, and got better at conveying their ideas to a wide audience. That is impressive, given that most of the attendees have enrolled in such programs for the first time, and considered themselves amateurs in the art of public speaking. What is even more gratifying is the overall 4.5/5 rating of the event offered by its participants. Success!
Over the course of 6 months, our employees worked through specialized theory material and implemented it into practice through diverse public speaking activities – ice-breaking speeches, thematic speeches, impromptu speeches, evaluation of colleagues’ discourses… The result is quite cheerful; most of the participants considered their post-course level as ‘skilled’. However, let’s dwell on their experience a bit further to understand where their progress came from.
We asked our colleagues how they would describe their learning outcome during Speechcraft, and we found out that most of our respondents emerged from the training armed with “tips & tricks” based on theoretical knowledge on the process of public speaking. This was a necessary, albeit static measure that was then implemented in practice – another aspect of the course thoroughly enjoyed by the participants. Public speaking is considered to be one of the top 3 fears that humans have (notice how we used a scary but attention-catching fact, a tip learned from our Speechcraft mentors), so we reasonably expected attendees to experience jitters and be reserved. However, one thing we learned from the course’s feedback is that participants perceived the atmosphere as “friendly” and “perfect to fight demons“, which we believe is the right environment to practice getting your thoughts out to an audience. Lastly, the training’s members noted how the acquired skills and experience from their Speechcraft days will surely be useful in other aspects of life, which once again proves that our course was a success to those present 🙂
As the main focus of our half-year Speechcraft sessions was structuring and delivering speeches, believe us when we say that we have heard a lot of them. Naturally, we were curious about the discourses that stood out in the participants’ minds. Thus, most members mentioned Tudor Lazarenco’s speech on Moldovan traditions, Sergiu Casu’s speech on company rules, and Egor Boaghi’s renditions. Surely, we can learn from them about captivating our audience’s attention and creating a lasting impression 🙂
Our Speechcraft course aimed at developing its members’ overall public speaking and oratory skills, which are evidently useful in daily communication on various levels. Needless to say, that also includes interactions and contacts in the workplace, so we asked our colleagues about the ways their participation influenced the way they communicate at their jobs. Some members mentioned feeling more at ease when offering presentations to clients, noting that “I am not afraid to be myself during the speech“, as well as interacting with co-workers – “I will have to deliver training to my colleagues; this will be very helpful“. Moreover, some participants have mentioned overcoming their moral and physical boundaries by saying “I’ve learned to train my memory to prevail over emotions & nervousness” and “I feel more confident during eye contact“. Lastly, attendees also mentioned increasing their level of spoken English, and important prerequisite at DevelopmentAid.
To summarize DevelopmentAid’s experience with the Speechcraft course, we decide to hear it straight from our public speaking pros – the program’s alumni. As a result, some positive aspects along with areas of improvement have been mentioned, and so, deserve to be transcribed. Most participants described enjoying the inviting atmosphere, plentiful opportunities to practice theory and the mystery of impromptu speeches as memorable & pleasing features of the course. Consequently, attendees mentioned ideas of delivering feedback in a more confidential and professional manner, employing skills in more creative activities (ex. theatrical plays), and increasing the regularity of the course as reasonable improvement directions. Luckily, the most common suggestion was hosting similar initiatives more often, which is a condition we can surely satisfy!
We are proud of our successful alumni and believe that the abilities they’ve gained during this Speechcraft course will serve them well in their professional and personal lives! Meanwhile, we have plenty of ideas in the works and hope that our colleagues will enjoy them just as much – in any case, at least now we know the right way to communicate them to our large audience. Cheers!