What is this?

Mentor in a Box is an education project to develop a video web library, teaching competent leadership skills to mentees of I'll Drink to That Toastmasters.

Inspired by the OpenCourseWare (OCW) Movement, the library will prepare mentees for the basics of competent leadership so they are more engaged during the weekly meetings. Mentees can search for a subject through the blog archive; play, pause and rewind tutorials; and stay up to date of new videos and postings by email.

This is certainly a work in process. So please feel free to subscribe to stay current! If you have questions, comments or would like to contribute to Mentor in a Box, email me @ mentorinabox@gmail.com. Mentor can also be found on YouTube here.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Practice Speech Time

Do you want to practice your speech but don't have a timer?  Don't Sweat!!

This post of Mentor in a Box provides timers for the 3 most common speeches at I'll Drink to That Toastmasters.

-Barroom (Table) Topics Response (30 - 60 seconds)
-Ice Breaker Speech (4 - 6 minutes)
-Standard Speech (5 - 7 minutes)

Each video provides the Green, Yellow and Red lights you would see on the night of the meeting.  Some enhanced features include a 3 second countdown, an audio "ding" when your time has started, and a buzzer for disqualified time.

These videos are a great tool to practice staying within speech time limits; and can be accessed from your computer, I-Pad and even your mobile phone.


Barroom (Table) Topics Response Timer (30 - 60 seconds)

Ice Breaker Speech Timer (4 - 6 minutes)

Standard Speech Timer (5 - 7 minutes)


-CC, Speech 10 Timer for Toastmasters (8 - 10 minutes)
-Evaluation Timer for Toastmasters (1 - 3 minutes)

CC, Speech 10 Timer for Toastmasters (8 - 10 minutes)

Evaluation Timer for Toastmasters (1 - 3 minutes)

Friday, March 23, 2012

How to Build Vocabulary

With words like auspicious, expeditious and ostentatiously used in last night's meeting, I've been inspired to post about how mentees can build their vocabulary and "talk gooder" in future meetings.

This film from Coronet Instructional Films titled "Build Your Vocabulary" is a flash back to 1948, where a man named Mr. Willis aspires to improve his vocabulary.  Reminisce of your days in a classroom watching instructional videos, and gain from this superlative piece of movie magic.

Here now is the film, "Build Your Vocabulary" or what I personally like to call "What you talkin' about Willis?"

Source: Archive.org

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Body Language (ADVANCED TOPIC)

This post will cover a more advanced topic of communication and competent leadership. It is recommended you finish at least 6 speeches from your Competent Communication Manual before reviewing.

A Toastmaster meeting is a laboratory to practice communication and leadership skills. As you become more comfortable with speaking and taking on leadership roles, you will naturally convey this comfort through your body language. However, becoming a student of body language (or nonverbal communication) can bring your leadership skills to a more advanced level.

This post will serve as a launching point for mentees to better understanding the importance of body language.

Even if you’re really comfortable in front of an audience, being aware of some of the movements we make as speakers, and how the audience can interpret this, can be a real asset for purposely conveying your intended message.

Source: CNN

This video from HowCast.com is about conveying a confident presence during a job interview. However, the same concepts can be applied when conveying confidence and compentence during a speech in Toastmasters.

Source: HowCast.com

Shoot for the Moon!  Find speakers you can model some of your body language after during a speech or leadership role.  For example, John F. Kennedy may be a good role model for speeches with 'pomp and circumstance.'  Refer to past speeches for inspiration.

Source: Archive.org

Perhaps you need a role model for a less serious occasion. Your inspiration for body language can come from any source, and can be used to convey any message.
Disclaimer: Viewer Discretion Advised

Source: CBS

What message do you want to convey through body language?

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

How to Write a Speech

Is it your first time writing a speech! Don't Sweat!

The following video created by HowCast.com does a nice job reviewing some of the basics of speech writing:

Source: HowCast.com

Although this video is not specifically about competent leadership skills, it does provide a great starting point to write a great speech; and great leadership takes great speeches.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

How to be Toastmaster

Is it your first time as Toastmaster for an "I'll Drink to That" meeting? Don't sweat!!

How to be Toastmaster provides you with a basic foundation of how to create and run an effective meeting at 'I'll Drink to That' Toastmasters.

This chapter of Mentor in a Box is divided into the following three episodes:

Episode 1: Prepare the Meeting
Episode 2: Transition Statements
Episode 3: Present the Awards

Episode 1: Prepare the Meeting

Episode 2: Transition Statements

Episode 3: Present the Awards

A Bonus Clip is also available for this Chapter to better illustrate how the concepts from the previous episodes work in a meeting from start to finish.

Houston, we have lift off!

The Mentor in a Box blogger page is officially online Wednesday, March 14, 2012.

This page will be a primary source for my mentees to access mentor material.

More posts coming soon!