The Carroll County Toastmasters will make an appearance at the Business Employment Resource Center in Westminster on Monday afternoon to share how the nonprofit organization can help job seekers acquire public speaking skills.
The informational question-and-answer session about the club will be hosted by Denise Anderson, vice president of membership for the Carroll County Toastmasters chapter, from 12 to 12:45 p.m. on Jan. 28. She is working on enrollment in the public speaking club after founding her corporate club at Mill Run through Aon Risk Services with fellow colleague Christopher Kornick in July 2017.
“I love Toastmasters, and it’s a great organization to teach communication and leadership skills,” she told the Times this week. “And who better than BERC? They’re looking for work, and employers consistently state that communication skills are the No. 1 skills they seek in new hires.”
Kornick said he joined Toastmasters as a dare to get out of his comfort zone and learn how to comfortably speak in public, and that he believes it will be a useful tool for job seekers at BERC — or anyone looking to build up skills in the workplace.
“The main thing I see BERC benefiting from, is not only being able to communicate and find a job — I was shocked how Toastmasters sets you up for a leadership role — but it led me to so many opportunities,” he told the Times.
“All of a sudden I’m not concerned with speaking in public: I speak at meetings and I’ve been asked to do things I normally wouldn’t be asked to do,” said Kornick. “So they’re giving me room to grow, and I think I’ve grown a lot in my role because of this opportunity. It’s not so much public speaking by itself.
“You learn leadership; you learn interpersonal skills; you learn just to volunteer and be brave,” he said.
Anderson said that has been her experience as well, and the most valuable part of being involved in Toastmasters for her is the confidence she’s been able to acquire.
“Confidence, improved public speaking, but also leadership,” Anderson said. “Along with that, I’m learning to delegate, learning to take command of a membership committee and delegate the work.
“I facilitated it and brought it to fruition,” she said. "I couldn’t have done it by myself — it was the team. And just something small like that gives you the confidence to say: ‘You know what, I’d like to do something else, maybe volunteer at church or volunteer at some kind of charity. … There’s nothing to be afraid of.’ ”
Although Anderson will be speaking at BERC Monday, the Carroll County Toastmasters Club is open to anyone interested in a confidence boost, organization, speech tips and more. Membership is $45 biannually, and she hopes BERC will sponsor memberships for its job seekers.
“I said: 17 years ago I used BERC when I was looking for a job,” she said, “and they invested $3,000 into me 17 years ago so I could get my A-plus and Network-plus certifications. … This is $45 twice a year for automatic feedback; they’re learning their communication skills, leadership skills, so [BERC Business Consultant] Scott [Singleton] says he want to see if BERC will pay for the memberships.”
The club meets from 7 to 8:30 p.m. on the second and fourth Wednesdays of every month at 244 Clifton Blvd., Westminster. Anderson can be reached by phone at 410-916-0907, or email email@example.com for more information on membership.