Guide: General Evaluator


General Evaluator report: usually 5-6 minutes – check the agenda

Half of your report should be on the quality of the speech evaluations.


1) Ensure that everyone on your team knows their responsibilities.

2) Evaluate and report on the meeting quality and on the evaluations.


The General Evaluator evaluates everything that takes place during the club meeting that is not otherwise evaluated. You evaluate the meeting but, more importantly, all the role holders who haven’t yet been evaluated. Do not evaluate the speeches, only the speech evaluators.

As General Evaluator, you:

  • ensure other evaluators know their tasks and responsibilities
  • take notes during the meeting and report on all club proceedings to evaluate things such as timeliness, enthusiasm, preparation, organization, performance of duties, etc.

Your team

The General Evaluator is responsible for the evaluation team:

  • Speech Evaluators
  • Table Topics Evaluation
  • Grammarian

What should be included in your report

Not necessarily in this order:

  • Overall meeting (20%)
  • Meeting etiquette (5%)
  • Evaluations (50%)
  • Other individual performances (25%)

Role basics

Before the meeting

1) Use easySpeak to see what the confirmed roles are of the meeting.  Confirmed role holders have green ticks against their name. If you don’t know your login, ask the VP Education for your username to reset your password.

2) Check with the Toastmaster to find out whether there are any deviations from the usual meeting format.

3) Contact your team before the meeting to ensure they understand their role.

4) Make sure that the Speech Evaluators have contacted their Speaker to talk over any special requirements.

5) When speaking to the Evaluators, emphasise that evaluations should enhance – or at least preserve – the self-esteem of the Speaker.

For example:

I’ll be the General Evaluator at the next meeting and I am writing to you in that capacity.

I know that you will be evaluating Susan’s speech. I just want to check that you have or will contact her before the meeting to find out whether there’s anything specific she’d like you to look out for in your evaluation.

I’d also like to make sure that you are comfortable with what is expected of a Speech Evaluator. If you’re new to the role, online guide with a downloadable worksheet and report template is at – note that the format of evaluations are intended to enhance – or at least preserve – the self-esteem of the speaker.

Let me know if you have any questions about the role. I’ll check in with you again at the meeting.

6) Create a checklist/worksheet from which you can follow the meeting.

Upon arrival

1) Greet all Evaluators present.

2) Ensure that the Speech Evaluators have the Speaker’s manuals and understand the project objectives and how to evaluate them.

3) If the Speaker hasn’t yet completed CL#5 Planning and Implementation task in the Competent Leadership manual, ask their Evaluator to evaluate them in the CL manual too (page 27).

4) Sit near the back of the room to allow yourself full view of the meeting and its participants.

During the meeting

1) Take notes on everything that happens (or doesn’t but should).

2) Cover each role holder in the meeting except for Speakers and Table Topic Speakers.

3) Cover good and less than desirable examples of preparation, organisation, delivery, enthusiasm, observation and general performance of duties.

4) When called upon, deliver your report – deliver it in third person, do not address individuals directly. That is, deliver your report as if the people you’re talking about weren’t in the room.

What you will gain from this role

Taking on this role improves critical thinking, organizational skills, time management skills, motivational and team-building skills

The general evaluation

Overall meeting (20%)

  • Was the room set up properly?
  • Was everything in its place?
  • Were guests signed in?
  • Is everyone wearing a name badge?
  • Were guests welcomed?
  • Were guests seated by members?
  • Did the meeting start on time?
  • Will the meeting end on time?
  • Briefly comment on additional matters you felt were noteworthy about the meeting.

Meeting etiquette (5%)

  • Did the speakers remain standing at the lectern until the person they called on came up to the lectern and shook their hand?
  • Did those calling on members for various roles lead the applause as the person they called on approached the lectern?

Evaluators (50%) and how to evaluate them

For each Evaluator, did they follow the recommended format? See below:

Recommended format for speech evaluations:

  • introduction
  • 2 commendations
  • 2 recommendations
  • 1 commendation
  • summary

Recommended format for Table Topic evaluations:

  • very brief intro
  • 1+ commendation
  • 1+ recommendation
  • 1+ commendation


  • include an analysis of the speech delivery
  • back up analysis with specific examples
  • spend time on speech content rather than delivery
  • ‘own’ their report (“I thought…”, “I felt…”)
  • end their report on a positive note

Just like a speech evaluation, the general evaluation should neither be a whitewash nor a scathing criticism, but should point out where the club could use some improvement and what we are doing well.

Individual Performances (25%)

Comment on how individuals with roles introduced their role and performed during the meeting. Don’t evaluate Speakers with prepared speeches or Table Topic speakers.

Did the Grammarian and Evaluators:

  • give specific examples
  • give recommendations, not criticism
  • deliver their report in third person
  • end on a positive note to leave the speaker inspired

Table Topics

  • were the topics appropriate?
  • was each topic introduced in 30 secs or less?
  • was the topic stated before a person was called up?
  • were members called on in the appropriate order (an experienced speaker first, members without roles, 1-2 guests)

Member e-mail addresses

To contact members, log in to easySpeak and click on a person’s name to send them a message.

Anything not clear? Contact the VP Education.