Vol. 6 New York TMC
New York Toastmasters Club (NYTM) is located at the heart the world’s power centre, Manhattan New York!
The club members meet every week at Midtown Manhattan, about a seven-minute-walk from Grand Central station.
It’s a “Perfect 10 Club” (the club achieved all 10 points to become a President’s Distinguished Club) representing the mighty energy of NYC!
The New York Times wrote an article about NYTM approximately 18 months ago, then the club gained an enormous popularity.
This encouraged so many club members and visitors to attend the meeting every week.
As a result, the meeting room was full to its capacity. A really good turnout indeed… Successful! (Seats are available on a first come-first-served basis. Gee.. some people couldn’t even enter the room!)
The club is at full capacity (up to 50 members), but does have a waiting list for visitors who would like to be a member of the club. You may have to wait until a slot opens up at least three months.
There I could meet a lot of Chinese members who have joined recently.
It was the same as the major TMCs around the world. You can feel their powered movements gaining strength in every corner of the world.
For instance, today at Harvard Kennedy School, the number of Japanese students is falling to below one percent!
There is no lecture about Japan at all.
On the other hand, curriculums on Chinese culture and history are dominant, I heard. The same thing is happening to NYTM, I’m afraid.
Once again, “First Come, First Served!” is the Golden Rule here.
If you would like to attend, I would suggest that you get to the venue early and secure your seat by yourself!
Or, simply stand in the back of the room.
Don’t expect that they will usher you to your seat like most clubs in Japan do.
If you would like to enjoy the meeting, just go early and get your seat It’s as simple as that!
They have soooo many members and guests attending, so they can not welcome everybody with utmost kindness.
Guests’ self-introductions are often omitted due to crucial time management.
You might feel they are businesslike.
However, during the meeting, if the room is very crowded and many are standing,
the President gives up her seat for a guest. Also some officers even go out of the room and let guests and members in.
They put the idea of “Servant Leadership” into practice, which I thought was exemplary.
As for speeches, I thought that speakers and evaluators were using beautiful words and speaking with an extra care.
After the meeting, I asked the club president about it though she was quite busy talking with guests and club members.
She replied to my question:” We try to weave words and craft sentences meticulously.
Text is a word which came from Texture or Textile. Just like weaving textile, the members try to craft speeches beautifully and speak tenderly and with care.”
“Craft words with care”. Their smooth and beautiful languages were not just a coincidence, after all.
Love our own language and speak with care, it seems like our Japanese tradition. Come to think of it, it’s universal.
I asked myself,” Do I speak with care?”
Do you speak English, and Japanese with enough care?
“The contents and mind are crucial in speeches and evaluations ” I often hear that.
Be that as it may, if we could use beautiful words, craft sentences and speak with care, our speeches and evaluations would be even better and sound quite comfortable for listeners.
In summary, what I learned at NYTM, which is the world’s power centre of dynamic Manhattan are the following three things:
– Asian people, especially the Chinese are gaining strength, whereas the Japanese have grown thin on the ground.
– Integrity of the club officers showing “servant leadership” is praiseworthy.
– Speaking with such care for the language is universal: The square one of speaking in public.
Now, if we go to New York, why don’t we all attend NYTM meeting, and take back their dynamism to our clubs in Japan?!