Toastmasters Tip: Six Keys for a Winning Toastmasters Table Topics Presentation

by Allan Misch and Allan Kaufman

  1. Go for it as often as possible. The more you do Toastmasters Table Topics, the easier it gets and the better you present. So volunteer!
  2. Repeat the topic out loud. This gives your mind a few extra seconds to think of something to say.
  3. Remember Toastmasters Table topics are mini-speeches with an opening, a body, and a closing. Begin your Table Topic with an opening sentence such as: “There are three reasons why I like to vacation in Hawaii.” Think of three reasons. If time is running out and you see the warning signal, say: “Due to a lack of time, I will share the remaining two reasons the next time I get this topic.” End by summarizing what you said. Then turn control back to Toastmasters Table Topics Master. For example, you would say, “Mr. (or Madam) Table Topics Master.”
  4. Personalize your response—even if you need to make up your answer. “This reminds me of what happened to me (or to my brother or my daughter).” or, “I remember when….”
  5. If you know nothing about the topic, do not panic. Just tell what you don’t know about the topic, for example… “What a great topic. I know nothing about the topic. But I will make it a point to study up on the subject just in case I ever get it again. I will research it on the Internet, assuming I can spell it. I may even go to the library. On second thought, why should I bother? Let’s face it. The topic just does not interest me. If it did, I would already know about it. To summarize, I know nothing about ____ and care not to, Mr. Table Topics Master.”
  6. Stay within time. Watch the timing signals. Consider ending just after seeing the warning signal and before the out of time signal.

Follow these six strategies and we guarantee you’ll develop into a dynamic Toastmasters Table Topics speaker and give winning Table Topic presentations.

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©Allan Kaufman and Allan Misch, 2003-2013. All rights reserved. The authors give permission to reproduce this article; disseminate it; publish it in print, electronic form and on a website as long as it is not edited and carries the byline and contact information.

Allan and Allan are members of the Randallstown Network Toastmasters Club. They specialize in rapidly reducing public speaking fear and offer 4 valuable, complimentary videos on “10 Critical Strategies to Make Your Presentation Slides More Memorable” and public speaking tips in their complimentary No Sweat Speaking™ newsletter. Get it at http://www.nosweatspeaking.com.

More in this section: Toastmasters Tip: 14 Steps for Being an Outstanding Toastmaster of the Day | Toastmasters Tip: How to Look Good as a Toastmasters Table Topics Master | Toastmasters Tip: JOG to Win that Toastmasters Evaluation Contest | Toastmasters Tip: Seven Keys to a Successful Toastmasters Evaluation | Toastmasters Tip: Two Powerful Techniques for Introducing a Speaker

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“I was very impressed by Allan's (Kaufman) extensive preparation—he knew exactly how to customize his public speaking seminar for the unique needs of our professional association. Allan led the informative seminar with great enthusiasm and encouraged a high degree of interaction among participants. While we are not sweating our next public speaking opportunity, we enjoyed the seminar so much that we'd like to ask him back to next year's meeting.” — A