Friday, June 24, 2005

Neckties and Power Suits II

A person’s name is the nicest one to him. And I happened to have a bad memory when it comes to names. I can’t explain it. Be it the names of glorious babes or plain girl-next-door, the sound just could not stick. The matter turns for the worst when the babes have only dialect names; I am completely hopeless. So you may ask, what is the significance of forgetting names? Nothing profound exactly, just that it gives you a clearer path to knowing and understanding the other person, so that they remember you too. I guess, in part, a person’s name has a lot of do with his ego, respect and attention from others. And who in this world does not have a little ego and crave for respect and attention from others?

The name “Shenton Sng” has stick to my mind, partly because one can easily link it to a locally well-known road comprising of commercial buildings. Maybe I should change my name to “Orchard Ang”, I thought. Other than the name, Shenton Sng had single-handedly changed my perspective of what the Toastmasters Club means to me with a evaluation full of impacts.

For a start, I was never one for formalities and professionalism in any meetings. I was always thinking of funny thoughts and whispering little gossips or remarks, which incidently represents my defiance and my distaste for regimental rules. There are unwritten protocols in Toastmasters according to Shenton, especially for the conducting of a chapter meeting. Protocols exist for a reason – for discipline and club promotion. With certain etiquette being followed, discipline is cultivated, which is the attribute that keeps us on the right track even if our final destination is not in sight. As for promotion of the club, we can use our own conduct as live testimony of its benefits. And it starts with our external presentation – with what we wear, that is. In additional, professionalism and efficiency of our club were be portrayed to the guests, which in turn would have an effect of attracting members.

I always presume personal development in areas such as leaderships and communication skill as my main reason for joining the club. Sub-consciously, this is secondary to the fact that I like listening to the good speakers. Overall, however, I have this attitude that the toastmasters club is some sort of a hobby club specifically for those who like public speaking. And with it being a “hobby”, professionalism and formalities never come into the picture. So Shenton has done some major shake up to my values. From now on, I would be leaning more towards personal development, although, I doubt I will not enjoy any lesser the meetings and the interactions. In fact, my fellow toastmasters and me are already discussing about where to buy neckties. Exciting times are well ahead.

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